Massive Cut to Florida's Business Rent Tax
Florida Realtors has been consistently advocating for a reduction of the state sales tax rate (currently 5.5%) charged for the rental, lease, or license to use real property, known as the Business Rent Tax (BRT). Prior to this advocacy effort, the state sales tax rate was 6% on all commercial leases.
During the 2021 session, the Legislature passed the most significant cut to this tax yet, decreasing it from 5.5% down to 2%.
Rate reduction provided by SB 50
The 2021 BRT cut was part of Senate Bill 50, which requires out-of-state retailers to collect and remit sales taxes on purchases made by Floridians, producing an estimated $1 billion a year in revenue. This new revenue will initially be used to replenish Florida's Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund.
Once replenished, the revenue will then be used to reduce the BRT from 5.5% to 2%, saving commercial tenants an estimated $1.23 billion annually.
The bill was signed into law on April 19, 2021. It is effective starting July 1, 2021, with the BRT reduction occurring once the trust fund is replenished.