Property Tax Exemptions


Homestead Exemption

If you own property that you are using as your permanent residence as of January 1, you may be eligible for significant tax savings by filing for Homestead Exemption.

A Homestead Exemption can:

  • Reduce the assessed value of your home by up to $50,000
  • Provide a tax savings of approximately $750 annually on average.
    (This amount will vary from city to city due to differing tax / millage rates.)

Homeowners applying for this exemption must:

  • Own and occupy their Lake County home as their permanent residence as of January 1.
  • Submit an application no later than March 1 of the year you wish the exemption to begin.

Homeowners who owned and occupied their residence after January 1 are encouraged to pre-file an application for the next tax year.

Homeowners can apply online, by mail, or in person at one of our two office locations.

File online now! It's QUICK and EASY!

File by Mail

If you choose not to file online, completing your application at home using our fillable PDF form, and returning it by mail, can save you travel time and money.

Click here for the Homestead Instructions and Application

File in Person

If you choose not to file online or by mail, you may file in person at one of our two office locations. Please read the section below on required documentation. You must bring no less than two forms of Florida residency when filing in person.

Required Documentation for Homestead Exemption

All applications must include no less than two (2) forms of Florida residency identification as listed below for each resident. By law, the social security number of the applicant and the applicant’s spouse must be provided; even if the spouse is not listed on the property title or does not live on the property. Non-citizens must provide a copy of their Permanent Residence Card (Green Card).

Forms of Florida residency identification are:

  1. Florida Driver’s License or ID card
  2. Florida Vehicle Registration
  3. Lake County Voter’s Registration
  4. Recorded Affidavit of Florida Resident Click here for the form

Trusts

If title to the property is held in a trust, a copy of the trust agreement may be requested after application is received.

Transfer of Homestead Exemption from an Existing Home

If you currently receive a Homestead Exemption for property you own and occupy as your permanent residence in Lake County, and you have moved to a new home in Lake County as your permanent residence, you must complete a new Homestead Exemption Application listing the new home address as your permanent residence. Homestead exemption DOES NOT automatically transfer. Our staff will take care of removing the former exemption and applying a new exemption for the appropriate tax year. You may qualify for even more savings with Homestead Portability; be sure to read the following.

Portability

You may be entitled to additional tax savings with Homestead Portability; also known as Save Our Homes Portability. Portability allows you to transfer up to $500,000 of existing Save Our Homes benefit from one Homestead to another Homestead anywhere in the state of Florida. To be eligible, you must have a “portability” benefit, complete the Save Our Homes Portability Application, and include it with your Homestead Exemption application. If you are unsure whether or not you have a “Portability” benefit amount to transfer to the new residence, please contact us at 352-253-2150 and a representative will gladly assist with determining your Portability status.

Portability Application - Transfer of Homestead Assessment Difference
Click here for Portability Frequently Asked Questions


$500 Widow/Widower Exemption

The widow/widowers exemption reduces the assessed value of your property by $500. This provides a tax savings of approximately $10 annually. Any widow/widower who owns property and is a permanent Florida resident may file for this exemption. If the individual remarries, they are no longer eligible. If they were divorced prior to the death, they are not considered a widow/widower. Applicant must submit a copy of the death certificate along with an application.

You may apply in person or by mail. Application must be submitted by March 1 of the year you wish the exemption to begin.

Click here for the application.

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$500 Disability Exemption

The disability exemption reduces the assessed value of your property by $500. This provides a tax savings of approximately $10 annually. Applicants must submit an application along with a statement of disability from one licensed, Florida physician on the state required Form DR-416 or a letter from Social Security stating you are disabled.

You may apply in person or by mail. Application must be submitted by March 1 of the year you wish the exemption to begin.

Click here for form DR-416

Click here for the application

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Limited Income Senior Exemption

If you are a permanent Lake County resident with a Homestead Exemption and you are 65 years of age or older as of January 1 in the year you file for this exemption; and your adjusted gross household income does not exceed $27,994 (this amount to be adjusted annually by the Florida Department of Revenue), you may qualify for an additional exemption of up to $50,000. The exemption amount varies by taxing authority. To apply, an application along with Proof of Income must be submitted.

You may apply in person at one of our two office locations or by mail during the application filing period of January 2 and March 1. If applying by mail, send your application along with the required documentation.

Lake County Property Appraiser
Attn: Exemptions Dept.
320 W. Main St. Suite A
Tavares, FL 32778-3814

Required Documentation

State law requires that copies of any federal income tax returns, any wage and earnings statements (W-2 forms), and any other documents (such as income worksheets) for each member of the household be provided to the Property Appraiser. The Property Appraiser cannot grant the exemption without the required documentation.

Household Income Documentation

The following household income documentation must be provided on or before June 1 for each household member (where applicable):

If you file a Federal Income Tax Return

  • Copy of federal income tax return(s) for the previous year (the one filed by April 15 of the current year) for each household member who files an income tax return - Form 1040, 1040A, or 1040EZ

If you do not file a Federal Income Tax Return

  • Copies of all wage earnings statements from the previous year for each member of the household including: W-2, RRB-1042S, SSA-1042S, 1099, 1099A, RRB-1099, and SSA-1099, if any

It is not required to provide income documentation at the time you apply, but must be provided on or before June 1.

Click Here For the Limited Income Senior Frequently Asked Questions Page
Click Here for the Application

Attention Seniors With 25 Year Residency

If you have resided in your home for 25 years or more, you may qualify for an additional exemption!

In November 2012, Florida voters approved a constitutional amendment called Amendment 11 which, if adopted by a taxing authority, would exempt the assessed value of your home if you have resided in the property no less than 25 year and if the Just Value of the property is less than $250,000. Lake County has adopted this additional exemption. The exemption applies to the Lake County General millage rate only. This exemption will not be applied to the school board or other taxing authority millage rates.

To be eligible for the additional 25 year exemption, a homeowner must:

  • Have or qualify for Homestead Exemption
  • Be 65 years of age or older as of January 1.
  • Have a total adjusted gross household income that does not exceed $27,994 (this amount to be adjusted annually by the Florida Department of Revenue)
  • Applied for and qualified for the existing Limited Income Senior Exemption
  • Live in your property for 25 continuous years or more
  • The Total Just Value of the property does not exceed $250,000

If you believe you qualify for this exemption, contact our office at 352-253-2154. Back to top

Military/Veterans Exemptions

$5000 Service Connected Disability Exemption

Applicant must submit a letter from the Veterans Administration stating the percentage of service connected disability (10% or more) along with an application, by March 1 of the year you wish the exemption to begin.

You may apply in person or by mail. Click here for the application.

$5000 Service Connected Surviving Spouse Disability Exemption

Applicant must be a spouse of a deceased Service Connected Disabled Veteran who was married for 5 years or more. You must submit a letter from the Veterans Administration stating the percentage of service connected disability (10% or more) of the deceased spouse along with a copy of the marriage license and spouse's death certificate.

Application must be submitted by March 1 of the year you wish the exemption to begin.

You may apply in person or by mail. Click here for the application.

Combat Related Disability Exemption

Applicants must pre-qualify for Homestead exemption, be 65 years of age as of January 1, be an honorably discharged veteran and have a "combat related disability" from the Veterans Administration. You must submit an application, a copy of your DD214, proof of age, copy of rating letter from the Veteran’s Administration, along with evidence of the combat related disability.

Application must be submitted by March 1 of the year you wish the exemption to begin.

You may apply in person or by mail. Click here for the application.

Service-Connected Total and Permanent Disability Exemption

Any honorably discharged veteran with a service-connected total and permanent disability, surviving spouses of qualifying veterans and spouses of Florida resident veterans who died from service-connected causes while on active duty as a member of the United States Armed Forces are entitled to an exemption on real estate used and owned as a homestead less any portion used for commercial purposes.

To be eligible for this exemption, the applicant must own, occupy and have been a permanent resident of this state as of January 1st of the tax year for which the exemption is being claimed.

If filing for the first time, the applicant must provide a letter from the United States Government or United States Department of Veterans Affairs as proof of service-connected total and permanent disability or the death of the spouse while on active duty.

Please note - Under certain circumstances, the benefit of the exemption may carry over to the veteran's spouse in the event of the veteran's death. Please contact our office, for additional information, at 352-253-2154.

You may apply in person or by mail. Click here for the application.

Deployed Service Member Property Tax Exemption

Applicants must currently receive a Homestead exemption, be deployed during the preceding calendar year on active duty outside the continental United States, Alaska, or Hawaii in support of Operation Noble Eagle, Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation New Dawn or Operation Odyssey Dawn. Applicant must submit the Deployed Military Exemption Application along with copies of deployed orders listing deployment dates and the deployment travel voucher or copy of the DD214 showing deployment dates.

You may apply in person or by mail. Click here for the application.

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Total and Permanent Disability Exemption

(Non Service-connected)

  1. Any real estate used and owned as a Homestead, less any portion thereof used for commercial purposes by any quadriplegic shall be exempt from taxation.
  2. Any real estate used and owned as a Homestead, less any portion thereof used for commercial purposes, by a paraplegic, hemiplegic or other totally and permanently disabled person, as defined in Section 196.012(10), Florida Statutes, who must use a wheelchair for mobility or who is legally blind, shall be exempt from taxation.*

*Persons entitled to the exemption under number two (2) above, must be a permanent resident of the state of Florida as of January 1st of the year of application. Also, the prior year gross income of all persons residing in or upon the homestead shall not exceed the amount of income, set forth in section 196.101(4), Florida Statutes, adjusted annually by the percentage change of the average cost of living index issued by the United States Department of Labor. Gross income shall include United States Department of Veterans Affairs benefits and any social security benefits paid to the person. A notarized, statement of gross income must accompany the application. Refer to form DR-501A. The 2013 gross income limit is $27,289.

Please note: If filing for the first time for either exemption, the applicant must provide certifications from (2) professionally unrelated, licensed Florida physicians OR (1) letter from the United States Department of Veterans Affairs and (1) certification from a professionally unrelated, licensed Florida physician. Refer to form DR-416.

You may apply in person or by mail:

Click here for the application

Click here for the DR-501A

Click here for the DR-416


Religious / Charitable / Institutional / Organizational Exemptions

Various exemptions are provided for under Florida Statute 196 for religious, charitable, institutional and organizational uses.

PLEASE NOTE: THESE EXEMPTIONS ARE NOT AUTOMATICALLY APPLIED TO PROPERTIES WHICH MAY QUALIFY. ORGANIZATIONS, INCLUDING CHURCHES, MUST FILE AN APPLICATION WITH THE PROPERTY APPRAISER; EVEN IF THE ORGANIZATION HAS A 501 C (3) STATUS WITH THE IRS. FAILURE TO FILE FOR THIS EXEMPTION WILL CONSTITUTE A WAIVER OF THE EXEMPTION FOR THE CURRENT TAX YEAR.

  • Religious - Must be used for religious purposes
  • Charitable - Must provide charitable services that if interrupted could result in public funds being allocated to cover the service
  • Educational - Must be used for educational purposes as provided under 196.012 (5)

Organizational exemptions may be applied for if the property is owned and used predominantly or exclusively by exempt organizations as of January 1st in the year of application. Timely applications will be accepted between January 2nd and March 1st. You may apply by mail or in person. If you missed the March 1st filing deadline, contact our office immediately so that we may advise you on how to request a review of a late application.

Click here for the application

For more information, please contact our office at (352) 253-2154 to speak with an exemptions specialist.

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