The Property Appraiser is required by law to determine how your mobile home (also known as a manufactured home) will be classified for property tax purposes. That classification is based upon whether or not it is located on land owned by the mobile home owner or on land owned by another (such as a mobile home park).
A mobile home permanently affixed to land owned by the home's owner must have a one-time "RP" (Real Property) series sticker affixed to the home. In cases where the land is not owned by the home owner, an annual "MH" (Mobile Home) series sticker is required.
Any mobile home classified as tangible personal property are appraised for value as of January 1 using standard appraisal practices. An appraiser will visit the site, measure the attachments, and assign a square foot rate for each type of attachment.
For example, a screened enclosure will have a square foot rate different from a carport or cabana. That is because the cost of building and installing such attachments to the mobile home would vary by type. Once the replacement costs are determined, the amount is depreciated based upon the age and condition of the mobile home or its attachments.
Visit customer service for the Property Appraiser's Office on the 1ST Floor of 560 So. Commerce Avenue (the Government Center Building) in downtown Sebring. Bring with you both the deed to the land and the title to the mobile home. The staff will complete a DR402 form which declares the mobile home to be real property.
This form should be taken to the Tax Collector's tag office. With it, you may purchase an "RP" sticker which is valid for as long as you own both the mobile home and the land.
This sticker must be purchased each year during the month of December from the Tax Collector's offices. The prior year's "MH" sticker is valid until December 31st.
In part, it does. The "MH" sticker only covers the mobile home itself. It does not cover any attachments or air conditioning units.
Highlands County does not require tax returns to be filed for mobile homes. The Property Appraiser's Office goes out to measure and assess mobile homes and attachments to insure uniformity in value.
If you own both the land and mobile home, have a "RP" sticker affixed to the home, and it is your primary residence, you may apply for homestead exemption. This exemption will reduce your taxable value by $25,000 -- approximately $500 in tax savings. The exemption must be applied for before March 1.
Yes, widow or widowers exemption (if you have not remarried) and disability exemption (if you are permanently disabled). Each will reduce taxable value by $500. These exemptions must be applied for between January 1 and March 1.