Property Appraisal

How is property appraised?

The Property Appraiser’s Office is required by Florida Statutes to visit and review every property within the county at least once every five years. Every property is to be appraised every year at Just Value, also known as Fair Market Value. Values change due to changes in market conditions, based on supply and demand. There are three approaches to value which are utilized in estimating Just Value or Fair Market Value. The Sales Comparison Approach is the most frequently used. This approach to value best reflects the actions of the market participants and the current economic conditions. The Cost and Income Approaches to value are also used, depending on the type of property being appraised. The Just Value of your property should not exceed what the property could reasonably be expected to bring in the open market if offered for sale.

How will I know the value that has been placed on my property?

Each August you will receive a Notice of Proposed Property Taxes, as required by law. This is an important piece of information. When you receive it in the mail, it will say “DO NOT PAY – This is not a bill.” Please review this information carefully. It will give you the assessed value of your property, any exemptions, and the taxable value of your property for the upcoming year. It will also show you the proposed taxes for the upcoming year as set by the taxing authorities, as well as the dates for their public hearings to discuss their budgets.

What if I think my market value is too high?

If you believe the market value of your property is too high or if you believe you should have received an exemption that does not show, you should contact the Property Appraiser’s office at once. The matter can be discussed and probably be resolved at that time. If you still feel your value is too high, you can file a petition with the Value Adjustment Board.

Can I get a homestead exemption if I rent a home or lot?

No. you must own the property on which you make an application. If you own a mobile home, but not the land on which it sits, you would not qualify for the homestead exemption. You would be required to purchase an annual mobile home decal through the Tax Collector’s office.

What if I own the mobile home and the land?

You could then qualify for homestead exemption. Even if you did not qualify for homestead exemption, you are required by Florida Statutes to purchase real property (RP) stickers for the mobile home. The mobile home would then be assessed as part of the real estate on the tax rolls.

Tangible Personal Property (TPP)

What is Tangible Personal Property (TPP)?

Tangible Personal Property is everything that is not real estate (land, buildings and improvements). It includes furniture, fixtures, tools, computer equipment, machinery, office equipment, supplies, leasehold improvements, leased equipment, signage, and any other equipment used in a business. Furniture and fixtures used in a rental unit (condo, apt, house) are taxable.

Who must file a return?

Any business owner or self-employed contractor owning tangible personal property on January 1st must file a return each year as required by Florida Statutes 193.052 and 193.062. Property owners that loan, lease or rent tangible property to others must also report such property. Rental Unit Owners: Furniture and fixtures in rental condominiums and apartments must be reported.

Why must a return be filed?

Florida Statutes require that all TPP be reported to the Property Appraiser’s Office annually. It is the duty of the Property Appraiser to assess all tangible personal property in Gadsden County. To facilitate this process, return forms are mailed to all taxpayers determined by this office to have property to report. If you receive a return form and feel that the form does not apply to you, return it with an explanation so that we can properly review your situation and, if necessary, remove you from the TPP roll. All forms should be returned.

Must an exempt organization file a return?

Yes, Florida Statute 193.057 requires that all personal property be reported each year to the Property Appraiser’s Office. Although an ad valorem tax exemption application is submitted by March 1, and all qualifications are met under Chapter 196 of the Florida Statutes, the Property Appraiser must still determine a value of the assets. You should remember to include all leased equipment in the appropriate section of the return.

What if I receive more than one tax return?

You may have property at more than one location. If you have more than one location, the assets of each should be listed separately on the appropriate return.

Is there a minimum value that I do not have to report?

No. If you are required to file there is no minimum value. A tangible return must be filed on all assets by April 1. If, however, the taxes amount to less than $10.00, you will not receive a tax bill.

What if I have no assets to report? Do I still have to file a return?

If you feel you do not have anything to report, fill out items 1 through 9a on the return and attach an explanation as to why nothing was reported. However, most businesses will have some reportable assets like furniture, and basic office equipment. If you have received a waiver letter and you have not added property that would cause the total value to exceed $25,000, you are not required to file a return. If the location of your business has changed, or if there has been a change in ownership, you must file a return.

How can I obtain the TPP return form?

Return forms are mailed in early January to all property owners of record. If you do not receive a return form at that time, please contact our office. Failure to receive a return form does not relieve you of the obligation to file. You can download the DR-405 Tangible Personal Property Tax Return from our website under the Forms tab.

What about old equipment that is fully depreciated and no longer on my books?

All property in your possession on January 1 must be reported even if fully depreciated on the books for accounting purposes. As prescribed by state law governing the ad valorem appraisal process, tangible personal property is allowed depreciation over time but as long as it is being used in an income-producing venture, it never depreciates to a zero value. Additionally, property that has been expensed under IRS Section 179 must be reported.

Am I required to report supplies used in my business?

Yes. All supplies used in the business, but not for sale to the public, should be reported. Examples are office supplies, tools and dyes, restaurant supplies, brochures and other consumables.

Do I have to report assets that I lease, rent, of borrow from some one else?

Yes. There is a section on the page two of return form specifically for such items. These assets are normally assessed to their owner, unless capitalized by the lessee, however, you should list the name, address and other required information of the person or firm from whom you lease the equipment.

If I rent my furnished home or condo for a period during the year, do I have to file a tangible property return?

Yes. You should report household furnishings such as furniture, window treatments, fans, art work, bedding, and appliances (excluding refrigerator, dishwasher, water heater and range/oven).

What happens if I do not file my tangible property return?

The Property Appraiser’s office is required to place an assessed value on all tangible personal property regardless of whether or not a tax return is filed (FLORIDA STATUTE 193.073). In the absence of owner input, we will be forced to estimate a value based on the best available information. Additionally, per statute, a penalty of 25% will be applied for failure to file and you waive your right to a Value Adjustment Board appeal.