The homestead exemption
in Florida declares that every person who owns and resides on real property in Florida on January 1 and makes the property his or her permanent residence is eligible to receive a homestead exemption up to $50,000. The first $25,000 applies to all property taxes, including school district taxes.
The homestead exemption in Florida may also refer to different types of homestead exemptions under Florida law:
Florida's homestead exemption providing an exemption from forced sale before and at death are among the most protective in the United States as it provides "no limit" to the value of certain real property that can be protected from creditors. The property tax exemption clause of Article VI renders property tax-free to the extent of certain dollar amounts in the value of the homestead.
Florida's debtor protection homestead provision is one of the broadest in the United States. The value of the property that can be protected is unlimited, so long as the property occupies no more than ½ acre within a municipality, or 160 acres outside of a municipality. The provision is written into the Florida Constitution, Article X, section 4, so it cannot be removed without a constitutional amendment.
Because of the scope of the protection afforded, persons from other states with heavy debts or large court judgments against them have been known to purchase expensive estates in Florida.
One event that can drastically affect the value of a homestead is municipal incorporation. If a 160 acre non-municipal homestead is on land that is later incorporated into a municipality, the homestead will be grandfathered in and remain protected for the owner and his heirs. However, for any future purchasers of all or part of the property, the protected land will drop to the ½ acre allowed within a municipality.
The homestead exemption offers virtually absolute protection from forced sale to meet the demands of creditors, except for certain special circumstances.
One unique feature of Florida's homestead exemption is that it attaches to proceeds from the sale of a home, if the homeowner intends to use those proceeds to establish a new Florida homestead within a reasonable time.
The Florida homestead exemption is only available to US citizens, permanent resident aliens, or others who are legally able to form the intent to remain permanently under immigration laws.
The preceding is for informational purposes only. Please note it is not complete. See full and complete Florida statutes for homestead and exemptions for additional information.