Real Estate & Tangible Taxes
AD VALOREM taxes based on value of real property are collected on an annual basis beginning on November 1st for the tax year January through December. The office of the Property Appraiser establishes the value of your property and the Board of County Commissioners and other levying bodies set the millage rates. Non ad valorem assessments are levied on a unit basis, rather than based on value.
Using these values and allowing for exemptions, the tax roll is completed by the Property Appraiser and he passes the certified tax roll to the Tax collector. The Tax Collector merges the non ad valorem assessments into the certified tax roll and mails the tax notice/receipt to the owner's last record of address, as it appears on the tax roll.
However it is the responsibility of each taxpayer to see that the taxes are paid and that a tax bill is received. In the cases where the property owner pays through an escrow account, the mortgage company, meeting criteria established by the Tax Collector, can request and be sent the tax bill, and the owner will receive a copy of the bill of information.
PAYMENT OF REAL ESTATE TAXES
Tax statements are mailed out by November 1st of each year with the following discounts in effect for early payment:
- 4% if paid in November
- 3% if paid in December
- 2% if paid in January
- 1% if paid in February
- The gross amount due in March
Taxes become delinquent April 1st of each year, at which time a 3% penalty is added to the bill. Advertising costs are also added before the tax certificate sale.
ALTERNATIVE PAYMENT PLAN FOR REAL ESTATE TAXES
The law allows taxpayers to pay their taxes on an installment plan, if they so choose and if their estimated tax due is more than $100. In order to participate in this plan, an application must be returned to the tax collectors office prior to May 1st, and the first payment must be made no later than July 1st.
DELINQUENT PAYMENT POLICY
Taxes become delinquent April 1st. The Sumter County Tax Collector’s Office will only accept cash or certified funds for Delinquent Taxes. If April 1st falls on a weekend or Holiday (observed by the Tax Collector’s Office) then checks will be accepted on the first business day following April 1st. Payment of Real Estate or Tangible Taxes will be cancelled if a check is returned for insufficient funds. The tax payer will be notified by certified mail of cancelled payment. If a check is returned for any other reason than insufficient funds, it will then be determined if the payment should be cancelled. If the payment falls into another month and the discount rate changes the tax payer will be responsible for the difference in discount or fees.
DELINQUENT PROPERTY TAXES
Real Estate taxes become delinquent on April 1st of every each. Checks are not accepted for delinquent taxes. After real estate taxes have become delinquent, they are advertised and collection cost is added to the delinquent Tax Bill. On or before June 1st, the Tax Collector must conduct a tax certificate sale on each unpaid parcel of property. The sale itself is operated on a competitive bid basis with interest bids beginning at 18% and progressing downward, as a Dutch Auction. When a certificate is sold against a piece of property, the successful bidder pays the delinquent taxes on that property and then holds a certificate which is a receipt and which also constitutes a first lien against the property.
To redeem the certificate, the owner of property must pay to the tax collector all delinquent taxes plus accrued interest, penalties, and advertising. The Tax Collector will then reimburse the certificate holder all moneys due and the property will once again be free and clear of that tax lien.
If the purchaser of the certificate holds that certificate until April 1st, two years from the year of the certificate and the property owner does not redeem it, then the certificate holder may file a tax deed application with the Tax Collector. The property owner is then notified of this auction and, if the owner still does not pay the taxes the property will be auctioned off by the Clerk of the Circuit Court to the highest bidder, at a public sale at the courthouse.
TANGIBLE PERSONAL PROPERTY TAXES
This is a tax levied against the furniture and equipment of a business and attachments of a mobile home. After the assessed value is determined by the property appraiser and millage rates set by the taxing authorities, the tangible tax roll is then certified and delivered to the Tax Collector for collection. Tax statements are mailed on November 1st of each year.
Taxes are delinquent April 1. If taxes are not paid, warrants are issued for additional penalties, interest and advertising are added to total due. The Tax Collector may levy/seize and sell personal property as required by law through a court order.
These taxes are collected for distribution to
- Local Government
- County Government
- School Board
- Southwest Florida Water Management District