Contrary to common belief, the Property Appraiser does not determine the amount of taxes each property owner pays. The Property Appraiser and staff are statutorily charged with placing fair market values on each property in Flagler County . These values are then used by the taxing authorities (including the County Commission, School Board, St. Johns River Water Management district, local municipalities and others) as a base for setting the millage rate. The millage rates provide for the total taxes needed by all authorities. Subsequently, taxes go up or down as a result of millage rates set by the taxing authorities.
Setting just values requires a thorough knowledge of the marketplace. Real estate values fluctuate due to many factors. Economic conditions, property use, size and condition of improvements to the site are examples of factors affecting value. All of the factors are reflected by selling prices throughout the county. It is important to remember that the Property Appraiser does not create the market, but places values in response to market changes.
The Property Appraiser is also responsible for administering exemptions. The most widely used exemption is Florida's Homestead Exemption allowing a $50,000 exemption to be deducted from the assessed value for taxes of a qualified primary residence. To qualify, the owner must establish Flagler County as his/her legal domicile. This may be achieved though providing a Florida driver's license, vehicle registration and voter's registration reflecting the domicile of record's address. Once established, the exemption is automatically renewed each year. Property owners are required to inform the Property Appraiser of any change in residency or marital status so that the exemption may be reviewed. Exemptions of $500 are extended to widows, widowers, and the disabled upon application. Low income seniors are exempted $50,000 from county and certain city values. Disabled veterans are exempted $5,000 and veterans who have attained the age of 65 and have a combat related injury are exempted based upon their percentage of disability. Active service members who are deployed in an approved war zone may be exempted for the time served. Anyone who is totally disabled can be entirely exempted from property taxes if their income does not exceed the limits set by Florida law. Veterans with total and permanent service connected disabilities and non-profit religious organizations may also qualify for total tax exemption.
ALL PERSONS OR ORGANIZATIONS SEEKING EXEMPTIONS MUST FILE ON OR BEFORE MARCH 1st OF THE YEAR IN WHICH THEY SEEK TO RECEIVE THE EXEMPTION.