Reverse Mortgage Reminder: Pay Your Property Tax

Tis the season to pay your property taxes…even if you have a Reverse Mortgage.  Property taxes and insurance are the homeowner’s responsibility in a Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM), a.k.a. Reverse Mortgage. The FHA’s Reverse Mortgage is for homeowners 62 or older and allows them to withdraw funds from the equity in their primary residence in a fixed monthly amount or a line of credit or a combination of both. A Reverse Mortgage can be the right thing in the right circumstances.  Sometimes a Reverse Mortgage can be the best solution to help an older person live more comfortably—able to afford medicine, food, and basic living expenses—however, it is not right for everyone.  There are positives and negatives which the homeowner needs to know and understand, for instance: Even if your lender is sending you a monthly mortgage payment, it is up to you to pay taxes and insurance on the property.    Read More

Four Good Things About Your Property Tax Bill

Receiving your tax bill is good news…paying it may be a different story.  The good thing (1) about receiving your property tax bill is that it means you are wealthy enough to own real estate.  The other good thing (2) about receiving your tax bill is that it means no one has taken that property from you.  Your property tax bill is the official notice that you still own what you think you own. Did you receive a property tax bill?  If your answer is “No” that could mean one of three things: You do not own real estate. Something is going on with your real estate. Your tax bill is stuck in the mail. Property owners are held to know that the taxes are due and payable annually according to Florida statutes.  That is one of your duties as a homeowner or landowner.  If you did not receive your tax bill (or notice) in November, that is your Constructive Notice that something is going on with the ownership title to your property. Another good thing (3) about your property tax bill is that you have a while to pay it, though it goes up with each month you wait.  […] Read More

Property Taxes on a Reverse Mortgage

Yes, you have to pay property tax on a Reverse Mortgage, and insurance too. A Reverse Mortgage (Home Equity Conversion Mortgage or HECM) is for homeowners 62 or older and allows them to withdraw funds from the equity in their primary residence in a fixed monthly amount or a line of credit or a combination of both.  But the homeowner is still responsible to pay for taxes and insurance on the property. Reverse Mortgages are not right for everyone.  There are positives and negatives, but sometimes they are the best solution to help an older person live more comfortably—able to afford medicine, food, and basic living expenses.  Even if you have a Reverse Mortgage and enjoy receiving a monthly mortgage income (instead of an expense), you still have to pay your taxes and insurance.   Read More

Have You Filed Your Homestead

Do you have a new primary residence?  Have you filed for your homestead tax exemption?  The deadline is coming up on March 1, 2015.  For your convenience you can file online at the St. Johns County Property Appraiser website at www.sjcpa.us.  Otherwise all location offices are open Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Main Office 4030 Lewis Speedway Suite 203 St. Augustine, Florida 32084   Ponte Vedra Annex 5430 Palm Valley Road Ponte Vedra, Florida 32082   Julington Creek Annex 725 Flora Branch Road St. Johns, Florida 32259   Read More

Where Is My Homestead Exemption?

Once there was an elephant who could remember where he put everything.  He knew where his spectacles were and where he had set the TV remote.  He could even find his car keys at all times, though it was very difficult for him to drive a car, given the fact that he was an elephant. Now the elephant had a son who was always very good to him.  So the father elephant decided to go ahead and deed his house over to his good son.  This seemed like a fine plan at the time; the father and son got along very well and the father wanted the son to have the house immediately upon his death.  However, when the elephants received their tax bill for the property that year, the amount due was quite a bit more.  The father elephant who could find everything was alarmed to see that the homestead exemption missing was from the tax bill. Where could it have gone?  The elephants looked under the table, in the couch cushions, and behind the refrigerator, but they could not find the homestead exemption anywhere. Finally the father elephant realized what he had done.  By putting his house in […] Read More

What Happened to My Homestead?

Once upon a time there was a father who owned a lovely plot of land where he had lived for years and years.  He maintained a good and healthy lifestyle full of fresh air and plenty of vegetables, but still the father knew that he would not live forever, and so he decided to do a little estate planning.  He wanted his son to inherit everything, so he went ahead and put everything in his son’s name, including the land on which he lived, that way his son would have it all and not have to wait for probate.  The only problem was, when the father received his property tax bill, it was a lot higher than what he was used to paying. By putting his primary residence in his son’s name, the father was trying to make inheritance easier and faster for his son, but in doing so, he had given up his own homestead exemption on his property taxes. Competent legal counsel can help you review all your estate planning choices and their consequences so you can make informed decisions.  An attorney can also help you ensure your will is properly executed so that your assets will be […] Read More

Rejoice! Your Property Tax Bill Is Here

The good thing about receiving your property tax bill is that it means you are wealthy enough to own real estate and that no one has taken that property from you.  Of course the bad thing is that you have to pay the tax bill if you wish to continue that status. November is the month known for Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and property taxes.  If you think you own property and did not receive a tax bill (or notice) recently, that is your Constructive Notice that something is going on with the ownership title to your property.  (It does not mean taxes were not owed.) Someone else may have paid the tax bill in hopes of eventually gaining your property.  Adverse Possession (or squatters’ rights) takes Actual, Hostile, Open, Notorious, Exclusive and Continuous occupation of the property.  The squatter has to change the tax bill to their name and pay it.  While Common Law requires twenty years to obtain Adverse Possession, in Florida it only takes seven. If you did not receive a property tax bill and think you should have, consult an attorney to investigate, or you can go online to the property appraiser’s office for more information.  In […] Read More

Property Tax Bill is Good News

Did you get a proposed property tax bill recently?  That is good news.  It means you have real estate and that according to the County, that asset still belongs to you.  Your property tax bill is notice to you that you still own what you think you own. If think you own property and do not receive a tax bill (or notice) in November, that is your Constructive Notice that something is going on with the ownership title to your property.  Consult an attorney to investigate, or you can go online to the property appraiser’s office for more information.  In St. Johns County, the link is http://www.sjctax.us/propertytax.aspx. Receiving the tax bill is good news…paying it may be a different story. Read More

Reverse Mortgage & Your Property Tax Bill

It is November, did you pay your tax bill?  Even if you have a Reverse Mortgage, you have to keep paying your Taxes and Insurance on the property.  Do not panic, your property tax bill is not due till late March, but the earlier you pay it the less it costs. If you have a Reverse Mortgage and have not received a tax bill, contact your attorney or your county tax appraiser’s office.  In St. Johns County, the link is http://www.sjctax.us/PropertyTax.aspx.   Read More