In the state of Florida, Property Tax levies have increased an astounding 99% between 2000 and 2007. We are facing a situation in which people are either being taxed out of or locked in their homes. The existing Save Our Homes amendment has created huge inequities among taxpayers with local taxing authorities increasing the burden on non-homestead properties.
This year our legislature enacted a statutory " Roll-Back and Cap" of property tax collections that has already been signed into law by the Governor. They also voted to place a Constitutional Amendment on the Jan. 29th. statewide ballot that, among other things, creates a new " Super homestead exemption " worth up to $195,000 of a home's value.
The " roll-back and cap " provides an overall cap limiting what goverments can collect from property taxes. It requires a local goverment to collect the same amount of revenue it did in the previous year ( adjusted for new construction and statewide personal income growth).
The " roll-back and cap " will apply to and protect all classes of properties from big, unpredictable year-to-year property tax increases. This includes vacation homes, commercial property and rental property.
The " super homestead exemption " will exempt a larger amount than the current $25.000 exemption. It will exempt 75% of the first $200,000 of a homes value, and 15% of the next $300.000. The maximum homestead exemption would be $195,000 - compared to the current $25,000 exemption. 94% of all homestead property in Florida is valued at $500,000 or less. This amendment would cut property taxes by about 70% for the owner of a new mediam priced home.
These reforms represent the beginning of meaningful property tax reform in Florida and would help the real estate industry by eliminating much of the uncertainty in the real estate market.