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NAIOP pushing to get rid of sales tax on commercial leases in FL

Did you know that here in Florida, a person or company who rents a commercial property must pay sales tax on their lease? If you're a business owner who is currently renting commercial property, chances are you do. But for those who aren't, or are considering renting real estate, sales tax on leases is something you not only want to consider but plan for down the road.

At present time, our state is the only one in the nation that charges tenants sales tax for renting commercial property. According to the Florida Department of Revenue, tenants pay this sales tax in exchange "for the right to use or occupy" the commercial property they are leasing. The tax is due when rent is due and is reported to the Florida Department of Revenue.

But even though this is the way of things here in Florida, there are some who believe that tenants of commercial properties should not have to pay sales tax on their leases. Groups like the National Association for Industrial and Office Parks plans to address what to do about the sales tax, perhaps as soon as next year. The top goal is to eliminate the sales tax though Lee McNeil, who is in charge of the associations Orlando chapter, says they will settle for at least a reduction in the tax.

Whether you're looking for commercial space to rent or have been doing so for a while, the prospect of lifting the sales tax on commercial leases may sound like a very good idea. It's worth pointing out though that a change like this may not come easily as lawmakers in our state will need to weigh the pros and cons of eliminating the tax. In the end, it may end up being a good idea we have to wait quite some time to see before it comes to fruition.

Sources: The Orlando Sentinel, "Lee McNeil: Real-estate association seeks to change sales-tax mix," Mary Shanklin, May 31, 2015

The Florida Department of Revenue, "Sales and Use Tax on Commercial Real Property Rentals," Accessed June 5, 2015

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