Each year, January 1 through March 1, the Miami-Dade Property Appraiser’s office allows homeowners to file for Homestead Exemption. This valuable deduction is only for a homeowner’s primary residence and once you file, it automatically renews each year. The exemption provides a $25,000 in assessed value for all taxing authorities and another $25,000 to all tax authorities (except the School Board).
Homestead Exemption also provides an additional valuable benefit of capping the annual increase of an assessed value to 3 percent or the Consumer Price Index (CPI), whichever is lower. Over a few years, this can save a homeowner a ton of money. Just looking at 2021 where some property values increased by more than 20 percent, those Homestead Exempt properties will only see an increase in their property taxes of 1.7 percent (the 2021 CPI rate). And, just like bank interest, capping each year can have a compounding and impressive effect on your tax saving over the years.
If you are already a Florida homeowner, you might have turned 65 during 2021. If so, don’t forget to take advantage of the Senior Citizen Exemption! Savings vary based on your personal situation, but they can be significant. Further, if you are 65+ and lived in the same home for more than 25 years, you would be eligible for a Long-Term Resident Senior Citizen Exemption.
If you are deployed military, have a disability, are a disabled first responder, are a widow/widower, you have some property tax exemptions you can file for as well.
There are even more savings for homeowners in Florida who want to upsize, downsize or just move within the State. Known as portability, property owners with Homestead Exemption and an accumulated SOH Cap can apply to transfer (or “Port”) the SOH Cap value (up to $500,000) to a new homestead property. This application is known as the “Transfer of Homestead Assessment Difference”, and the annual deadline to file for this benefit and any other property tax exemption is March 1st.
Portability allows you to bring the years of accumulated property tax savings along with you (at least a percentage thereof) and it is meant to provide Floridians the freedom to choose the best housing for their situation without losing the tax standing they have earned over the years of being in Florida.