Beaufort County Government & Tax
Beaufort County (Taxes, Assessments, Sales, Legal website: http://sc-beaufort-county.governmax.com/svc/
Beaufort County Main Website: https://beaufortcountysc.gov/
All residential and commercial property in Beaufort County is taxed at a 6% assessment rate. An exception is an owner-occupied legal residence which may qualify for the 4% Special Assessment Ratio. If you occupy your property and it is your legal residence, you may be eligible for the 4% Special Assessment Ratio.
Most folks moving from another state will likely find taxes in South Carolina to be slightly (or, in some cases, significantly) more advantageous. Below find some helpful information and corresponding links regarding local and state taxes. Of course, please consult a financial advisor, certified public accountant, or tax attorney before making any major decisions or if you require professional advice or clarification. The content listed here is for general informational purposes only and is not all-inclusive.
Beaufort County separates taxes into two categories: Personal and Real.
Personal Property is defined by the county as “All things other than real estate which have value such as cars, trucks, boats, motorcycles and airplanes and items used in a business such as furniture, fixtures and equipment.” Personal property taxes are assessed yearly and must be paid, in full, to the county prior to you registering applicable property with SC DMV. With few exceptions, the County does not offer discounts on personal property taxes. For FAQ about personal property taxes in Beaufort County: Beaufort County Auditor
Real Property is defined by the county as “All land and the buildings, structures or improvement on the land.” There are several factors that determine the rate at which your real property is taxed, including your age and whether the property is your primary residence.
SC Tax Relief/Legal Residence Discount (aka the 4% Exemption)
This discounted tax rate on real property is available strictly to full-time South Carolina residents and is applied only on their primary residence. Second homes, rental and/or investment properties are taxed at 6%. It is important to note that you MUST apply for the 4% exemption as the county will not automatically tax at this rate. Click the link above for the application.
South Carolina’s Homestead Exemption “is a complete exemption of taxes on the first $50,000 in Fair Market Value of your Legal Residence for homeowners over age 65, totally and permanently disabled, or legally blind.” You must apply for this exemption in-person at the Beaufort County Auditor’s Office. For more information, please call 843-255-2500 or visit the Auditor’s webpage.
For a comprehensive overview of taxes in the State of South Carolina, read over this publication produced by the Department of Revenue: Moving to South Carolina: A Tax Guide for New Residents
Specific forms and information for individual taxpayers and South Carolina businesses can be accessed by visiting the South Carolina Department of Revenue’s website.