(239) 390-8000 ~ 21500 Three Oaks Parkway, Estero, Florida 33928

FAQ: Property Tax

Commonly Asked Questions

What is ad valorem?

A tax based upon the assessed value of property, used interchangeably with “property tax”; derived from a Latin phrase meaning, “according to worth.”   Property taxes are determined by multiplying the rate of taxation expressed in mills (0.001) times the non-exempt value of property or taxable value.

What is a mill (also known as millage rate)?

A mill, as used with ad valorem taxes, is the rate that expresses the dollars of tax per one thousand dollars of taxable property value. (1/1000 of a dollar)

Who determines the millage rate?

These rates are determined by the authority having jurisdiction over a particular area, such as the county, School Board, water districts, fire districts, etc.

What is a ‘rolled-back rate’?

The rolled-back rate is the millage rate calculated by using current taxable property values and the prior year budgeted revenue made by the governing authority.  The intent is to provide the authority “just enough property tax revenue to operate next year if they rolled-back to last year’s budget”.

How is the taxable value determined?

The taxable value is the assessed value of the property minus the amount of any applicable exemption, such as Homestead Exemptions.  Additional information on this can be found at the Lee County Property Appraiser’s website (www.leepa.org)

What does the TRIM notice mean?

TRIM means Truth in Millage and was enacted in 1980 after Governor Bob Graham ordered the Department of Revenue to enforce full market value assessment of property in Florida and to discount inaccurate tax assessment rolls.  This process is governed by Florida Statute 200.

This TRIM notice of proposed taxes is mailed to taxpayers the first week of August each year.  This notice is very important.  You will recognize it by the “DO NOT PAY – THIS IS NOT A BILL” statement on the envelope and document.

The TRIM Notice tells you the taxable value of your property and provides information on proposed millage rates and taxes as estimated by each taxing authority which serves you and your area (example:  county, School Board, water districts, fire districts, etc.).  It also tells you when and where these authorities will hold public meetings to discuss tentative budgets and set your final millage rates.

More information can be found on the Lee County Property Appraiser’s website (www.leepa.org) and a helpful guide on TRIM notices can be linked by going to http://www.leepa.org/faq/pdf/trimguide.pdf

Tax Talk & FAQ (pdf)

We want to hear our residents, visitors and business owner’s questions.

Please call our administration offices at 239.390.8000 with comments, questions or concerns.