The City of Cape Coral (as with all of Florida) has no personal income tax. Sales tax is 6 percent, and there are no taxes on personal services. The corporate income tax rate is 5.5 percent and is assessed on gross receipts and not on existing inventory. (NOTE: These numbers are subject to change at any time and are not guarantees).

The city has a total real estate property tax, which includes county, school, miscellaneous taxes, that averages just under 21 per $1,000 of assessed value. That means that the taxes on a $100,000 property would be about $1,800 per year (90% of the assessed value times the millage rate). Florida has a Homestead Exemption law that allows eligible homeowners to deduct $50,000 from the assessed value prior to computation of taxes due. As of 2011 the millage rate for Ft. Myers is 21.8371, Lehigh Acres is 17.7396, Fort Myers Beach is 17.0374 and Sanibel is 17.0092. Again, please remember that these are not hard and fast numbers, just basics! Different property types, locations, etc. can have different millage rates.

Cape Coral also is one of only three cities in Florida that does not have public services taxes. This results in considerable savings for residents. The public service tax charged by other cities can range up to 10 percent and is based on consumption of electricity, water, telecommunications, and bottled or metered gas.

Schools levy their own taxes, which vary depending on the district. The Lee County Assessors Web site at: www.leepa.org has specific has a tax calculator which will estimate property taxes based on the cost of the property.  

Annual Tax Increase Cap

Another tax benefit unique to Florida is our annual tax increase cap, called "Save Our Homes (SOH)". According to the Lee County Property Appraiser: "SOH places a limitation of 3% on annual assessment increases on homestead exempt property. For all property first granted homestead exemption in the prior year, that year’s assessed value will be the base value for the implementation of "Save Our Homes". Thereafter, the assessed value will not increase more than 3% or the percentage change in the Consumer Price Index, whichever is less. The property’s market value may differ from SOH assessed value. SOH assessed value will never be greater than market value."

This benefit, spearheaded state-wide by Lee County's own property appraiser, is designed to protect our residents on fixed incomes from the negative affect of rapidly rising home values. While you still benefit from increased equity in the home, you are guaranteed that your assessment value will not increase by more than 3% a year. Note, however, that this is not a cap on tax rates, but the assessed value of the homesteaded property.  

Homestead Exemption

Florida provides a valuable tax benefit for residents whose primary residence is in Florida: the first $50,000 of value in the home is not taxed!

According to the Lee County Property Appraiser: To qualify you must:

"A. have title to  the residence;

B. reside thereon;

C. be a Florida resident (A., B. & C. all as of January 1st of the year of application); and

D. apply (in person or by mail via a downloaded application from our website) by March 1st ...

Florida residency is established by holding Florida driver's license, Florida vehicle tag(s), Florida voter registration number(s) or declaration of domicile, Social Security numbers and a recorded deed."

Additional tax benefits are available for widows and widowers, and seniors 65 and over in certain Lee County cities.