By: Brendan Lynch
Over the last month, all 67 Property Appraisers in Florida have finalized their 2018 valuations for property taxes. Truth in Millage (TRIM) notices will be sent out to all property owners, so these notices have either been received or will be waiting in your mailbox soon (the valuations can also be found online by the end of August). The TRIM notices are sent to the mailing address on record at the Property Appraiser’s offices, so pay attention if that address is a registered agent or some other less often used address. These TRIM notices show the property tax assessments and market values for 2018, as well as estimated property taxes for this tax year. Property owners have only 25 days from the mailing of the TRIM notice to review the valuation and challenge the valuation (market or assessed) on the property.
Annually, we advise all property owners to carefully review their TRIM notices as soon as they are received. We have seen some stabilization in value over the last couple of years, but property values – particularly in certain strata such as multifamily and hotel – continue to creep up. As with prior years, we recommend that property owners pay close attention to both your assessed values and market values. While assessed values are capped at 10% for non-homestead properties and 3% for homesteaded properties, there is no such limitation on the increase in market values. In other words, your property’s market value can increase significantly, which impacts the taxes you pay for the school board (usually between 40-50% of your total taxes).
This is also the last year for the 10% non-homestead cap, unless it is extended in November as part of the Constitutional Amendment slate on the ballot. Amendment 2 would make permanent the 10% cap on non-homestead parcels that has been in place since 2009.
Lowndes has a Property Tax Group that can help with all your property tax questions, from initial review of the valuations on the TRIM notice through official challenges at the Value Adjustment Board (VAB), as well as filing a civil suit challenging an adverse decision by the VAB. We also deal extensively with various property tax exemption approvals and denials.