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Old 03-16-2017, 06:09 AM   #1
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Boat tax info?

Is there a website I can look for tax info broken down state by state? I am mainly interested in the yearly personal property tax.
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Old 03-16-2017, 06:39 AM   #2
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Boat tax info?

I cannot speak to all states, but in Virginia personal property tax is levied at the city/county level so it can very widely in a given state. For example: In Virginia Beach the rate is one millionth of a cent per $100 value making the effective tax rate 0. In Portsmouth, VA it is $0.50 per $100 value.
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Old 03-16-2017, 07:03 AM   #3
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South Carolinas tax is similar. The state sets the rate but the counties set a "millage rate" which is a fraction of the state's rate. This makes the tax on a given boat (or car, truck, airplane, etc.) different in each county.

The advantage of this system (for the county, not for you) is, if they decide they need more money, they can raise the millage rate and no elected officials get blamed for raising the tax rate.

I'm a bit curious why you would ask this question because you will be taxed according to where you live or where you use the boat.

Some states (MD for one) have no personal property tax. The difference is, at least in MD, you pay a pretty hefty sales tax on the boat. 5% when I lived there. But, you only pay it once, not every year.
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Old 03-16-2017, 07:33 AM   #4
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Short answer to your question is, no. There is not any one site that will give you all the answers. The only thing you can do is go through the official sites for each state you are considering, to get the details for each one.

(And, as just one data point, Florida has no personal property tax.)
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Old 03-16-2017, 07:36 AM   #5
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There are ways to avoid or reduce your boat tax. Ask John Kerry. Best to get a good CPA and do what he says.
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Old 03-16-2017, 08:21 AM   #6
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I am trying to do some research as to where to retire to in future, hence the question. Was under impression the property tax is a big deal. But according to info above maybe I was mistaken? How about in Tampa area? How much would I be paying for property tax?
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Old 03-16-2017, 08:29 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by p38 View Post
I am trying to do some research as to where to retire to in future, hence the question. Was under impression the property tax is a big deal. But according to info above maybe I was mistaken? How about in Tampa area? How much would I be paying for property tax?
There is no personal property tax in FL. There is no state income tax in FL. There is no longer an intangible tax in FL. You will find the tax structure of FL hard to beat.
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Old 03-16-2017, 08:38 AM   #8
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I am trying to do some research as to where to retire to in future, hence the question. Was under impression the property tax is a big deal. But according to info above maybe I was mistaken? How about in Tampa area? How much would I be paying for property tax?
Florida is supposed to be good for low taxes but I think the sales tax is on the high side. The idea is to tax the tourists, rather than the residents.

When I retired, a lot of friends suggested that I move here or there because the taxes were low. I figured that after working hard for 40 or more years, I'm not going to live out the rest of my life holed up in some dinky town because the taxes were low, I figured I would live where I could enjoy the results of my hard work.

Taxes aren't everything. There are many websites that compare the cost of living in different states and cities. Saving a few hundred dollars in boat taxes shouldn't be your reason for retiring to a particular state, living where you want to live should be the reason.
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Old 03-16-2017, 08:55 AM   #9
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Yes, there are ways to reduce boat tax. Hard to find a specific site on what the personal property tax on boats, is, but there are ones on vehicles. But best to check the state you're interested in, as some have maximums and/or sliding scales.

You can also lease a boat and often will affect tax rates. Let your imagination run on that one.
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Old 03-16-2017, 09:17 AM   #10
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Are you referring to Property Tax or taxes paid on a boat? NH and RI don't tax boats, beyond the cost of registration. NH has no income tax, however it does have a tax on investment income. NH has a large property tax rate as a result of no sales or income taxes.
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Old 03-16-2017, 09:24 AM   #11
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Actually, there is a site with state by state info.

State Boating Information Home - Government Affairs - BoatUS

It's not exhaustive, but a good starting point.
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Old 03-16-2017, 09:43 AM   #12
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I'm with the OP on this; it is an understandable concern for people either shopping for a boat or even if you have one and planning to move to a different state. Trawlerfests even hold seminars on the complexities of taxation. I've heard some great loopers that keep moving their boat from state-to-state every 90 days or so to avoid the evil tax man; not hard to do when you're actually doing the loop, but some day you might want to settle down.
For example if the OP has a boat in Chicago valued at $200k and he decides to retire in Florida and keep his boat there permanently, isnt it true he'd have to pay the 6% tax on his boat to the tune of $12,000.00...?
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Old 03-16-2017, 11:34 AM   #13
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Florida does not charge sales tax on a boat brought to Florida that has been owned and registered somewhere else for at least 180 days. If you buy a boat here and intend to keep it here, then the tax in most counties is 6% with a maximum of $18,000 no matter what you paid for the boat. Almost all states will give a sales tax credit for the tax paid in another state. Registration fees for a 65 foot documented vessel are around $250 for two years.
There are no personal property taxes in Florida for boats.
As a side note if you buy a boat in Florida and you are a non-resident you can keep it here for up to 180 days with no sales tax due Florida.
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Old 03-16-2017, 12:03 PM   #14
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I would suggest thinking of where you'd like to live regardless of taxes and then studying the tax structures of the states you're considering. You need to look at the entire tax picture, not just the boat. But then you need to look at all costs of living, not just taxes. There's not going to be some simple form to check and know which is right for you.

As you're talking retirement, also look at services for retired and seniors. You will at some point need medical care and other services. Look at transportation, including public. Look at climate and your preferences and tolerances, even within a single state.

The pages Twisted referred to don't show property taxes.

Whether property taxes exist or not is a state matter. The amount is a local matter.
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Old 03-16-2017, 12:59 PM   #15
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Florida does not charge sales tax on a boat brought to Florida that has been owned and registered somewhere else for at least 180 days. If you buy a boat here and intend to keep it here, then the tax in most counties is 6% with a maximum of $18,000 no matter what you paid for the boat. Almost all states will give a sales tax credit for the tax paid in another state. Registration fees for a 65 foot documented vessel are around $250 for two years.
There are no personal property taxes in Florida for boats.
As a side note if you buy a boat in Florida and you are a non-resident you can keep it here for up to 180 days with no sales tax due Florida.
Thanks brokerguy and can i follow up on this line of thought?: if the boat is bought and registered in RI where they have no sales tax, then i move it down to Florida and decide to stay there forever, would there be no sales tax? in this case, i would then only have to pay the $250 to get it registered in FLA?
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Old 03-16-2017, 01:14 PM   #16
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Thanks brokerguy and can i follow up on this line of thought?: if the boat is bought and registered in RI where they have no sales tax, then i move it down to Florida and decide to stay there forever, would there be no sales tax? in this case, i would then only have to pay the $250 to get it registered in FLA?
Wifey B: True if you stayed in RI the 180 days. Now, most states do not work that way and you get penalized coming from a no sales tax state because you don't get credit for paying because you didn't pay. Every state different. Too many states. Or not enough. Which. I don't know. I vote South Florida secedes from Florida. The new state of Paradise.
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Old 03-16-2017, 04:56 PM   #17
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p38

Illinois has no property tax on boats. Nor state income tax on retirement income. Under certain situations it is an excellent state as a tax situs.

Others have pointed out you need to look at the whole tax picture before making a decision about your legal residence. If it is just keeping the boat somewhere that is different. An important issue is making sure you don't qualify for a new sales tax charge (usually you would get a credit for any tax already paid.) Maryland is a good example of this.

Most of the worst tax states (boating) are on the west coast.
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Old 03-16-2017, 06:09 PM   #18
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Thank you guys! Yeah of course property tax is just one item on my list, not the only one. Thanks for the info! Florida is shaping up more and more clear now
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Old 03-16-2017, 06:21 PM   #19
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Thank you guys! Yeah of course property tax is just one item on my list, not the only one. Thanks for the info! Florida is shaping up more and more clear now
Wifey B: Sorry, Florida full and allowing no immigration from the US.
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Old 03-16-2017, 06:52 PM   #20
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Don't forget to factor in the cost of insurance. Places like Florida and the gulf coast are much higher than most other states. 2-3K$ per year is the norm for a larger trawler, and the slip fees are very high in many parts of south FL. You're gonna pay for that hot sunshine! Ben
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