Homesteading in Florida

Homesteading in Florida

Permanent Residents (as described below), receive great tax benefits including the Homestead Exemption. For those who may be new to the area, this exemption takes a significant amount off of the taxable value of your home, lowering your annual property taxes. 

Whether you’ve purchased your first home or you’ve sold and purchased a new home, it is important to remember to apply for homestead exemption shortly after the sale is complete. The process is quite simple and, in Sarasota County, the process can be completed on-line.


The Process

To complete a new application, you can go to your county appraiser website and search for “Homestead Exemption.” If you are a Sarasota County resident, you can visit the Sarasota County Property Appraiser website or click this link to be directed to the application. 

The application will require the following information:

Proof of Permanent Residency

To get this exemption you will need to prove that you are a permanent resident, and complete the application. Note that the application may vary from county to county. Florida statutes has 10 requirements to prove permanent residency, including (source: Online Sunshine):

  1. A formal declaration of domicile by the applicant recorded in the public records of the county in which the exemption is being sought.
  2. Evidence of the location where the applicant’s dependent children are registered for school.
  3. The place of employment of the applicant. (If applicable)
  4. The previous permanent residency by the applicant in a state other than Florida or in another country and the date non-Florida residency was terminated.
  5. Proof of voter registration in this state with the voter information card address of the applicant, or other official correspondence from the supervisor of elections providing proof of voter registration, matching the address of the physical location where the exemption is being sought.
  6. A valid Florida driver license issued under s. 322.18 or a valid Florida identification card issued under s. 322.051 and evidence of relinquishment of driver licenses from any other states.
  7. Issuance of a Florida license tag on any motor vehicle owned by the applicant.
  8. The address as listed on federal income tax returns filed by the applicant.
  9. The location where the applicant’s bank statements and checking accounts are registered.
  10. Proof of payment for utilities at the property for which permanent residency is being claimed.

You will be asked to supply the following documentation to prove residency:

  • Valid Florida Driver License or valid Florida Identification card. 
  • Vehicle registration (if vehicle owner).
  • Voter registration (if registered voter). 
  • Permanent Resident Alien Card (if applicable)


Personal Information

As well as offering information about residency, you will be required to supply your personal information and documentation, including:

  • Date of birth
  • Social Security Number (if you are married, you will also be required to provide your spouse's SSN)
  • Date you purchased the property
  • Date you occupied the property
  • Address of previous residence
  • Address of other property owned
  • Telephone number
  • Employment information (if applicable)
  • Mailing address listed in last IRS tax return

If you have any questions about the Homestead Exemption application, visit your county’s appraiser websites below:

If you should need any assistance or have questions about the Homestead Exemption process, email me at angie@gulfsidemtg.com.