Pineland Marina offers inside and outside Dry Stack Slips for monthly or annual storage of your boat.
Indoor, out of the harsh Florida weather storage provides a great means of protection for your boating investment.
Though not well known outside this state, Florida is the only state to separately charge sales tax on commercial real estate rent. It becomes clear that most storage rental businesses will not qualify as a bailment (assuming they even wanted to).
So, the issue of bailment essentially comes down to a choice by the business owner of what degree of custody and control do they want to accept. Additionally, if you are renting movable storage units, you need to be aware of the applicable surtax.
As indicated above, a particular storage business that is notified of a sales and use tax audit might not have any questions about how it has treated the actual storage charges. FLORIDA COMMERCIAL PROPERTY OWNERS GET BLINDSIDED BY SALES TAX, published December 31, 2011, by James Sutton, CPA, Esq. FL GOV SCOTT CALLS FOR PHASE OUT OF COMMERCIAL RENT SALES TAX, published January 29, 2014, by James Sutton, CPA, Esq. FL TAX – VOLUNTARY DISCLOSURE CAN BE THE PERFECT SOLUTION, published October 5, 2012, by Jerry Donnini, Esq.
Pirates Cove Marina is pleased to offer the following dry storage rates in addition to its current Annual rates. Our new M20 Tenant Floor Machinewill keep all of our concrete floors clean, which in turn will keep your vessel even cleaner while being stored. Subscribe to our newsletter to be the first to hear about exciting new products and specials! When you return, ramp out, drive through our flush station, return the boat and trailer to the fenced lot and be on your way. This means businesses that have commercial property leases will be subject to Florida sales tax. This tax can apply to offices, warehouses, and other parcels of real property for other uses.

Per the rule, a safe deposit box is a bailment (because the bank has one key and the customer another and both are necessary for access to the box) but an airport locker is not a bailment (because the renter has the key and sole access to the stored property). For those instances where a customer has an access code and the lone key to the storage space used, there clearly doesn't appear to be the required transfer of possession or level of custody required for a bailment. This uncertainty of the proper tax treatment can also become an issue if the storage space is not real property but is instead a movable container which holds customer property and involves customer notice before the customer can get access to the property. This would mean that the business must remit tax to the landlord and then take a credit for tax paid when reporting tax collected from its customers. But, the auditor is going to look for every possible issue that might involve unreported tax.
Having dealt with new and experienced auditors from all over the state, we can tell you that the issue of bailments is not even taught to auditors. You will reduce the wear and tear on your vehicle by eliminating the need to tow your boat for long distances. Often the contractual language involved will not try to hide the fact that a bailment is not intended as the business might not want to risk the potential liability associated with custody and control of a customer's property. But, if the storage unit is moved to another county for any number of reasons, then the corresponding surtax will need to be properly reported for allocation purposes to the applicable county. This applies to the movable storage units noted above as they typically will charge a separately for storing the unit on their property rather than at the customer's location.
And, in many instances, the auditor is authorized to get the tax from either the business or the customer if it wasn't paid. So you have to either be informed enough to know about bailments yourself or hire someone to represent you who is.
In such a case, one would be hard pressed to argue that the arrangement was a non-taxable bailment. Again, as noted above, the business can address the issue in the contract with the customer to specifically disclaim a bailment.
If you live anywhere near the water in Florida, then you have probably seen the boat storage facilities that place boat in storage off the ground, often stack up several boats high. Use tax can be due from the business owner who is moving the units unless the unit was used in the original delivery county for more than six months.

This is just one of the many strange quirks in Florida sales and use tax law and we can assist you with any questions you might have. As the Florida Department of Revenue (FDOR) has been auditing a number storage facilities recently, this issue is becoming more important.
For all intentions with the FDOR, the State seems perfectly willing to accept that the transaction is subject to sales tax to receive their associated revenue in those cases where there isn't a bailment.
But, this is not the case if the billing includes the otherwise nontaxable services into a lump sum. You pull the boat up to the storage facility and a special type of forklift picks up the boat and transports it into a dry dock storage bin.
But, as noted above, the lack of use tax being due does not change the fact that each rental payment is its own sales transaction so that surtax will be due based on where the unit is located at the time of payment. Add in the fact that the State has been more likely in recent audits to included exhibits for as little as $50 and less likely to waive penalties, this means it is more important than ever to know your sales tax rights to protest your business and not be overcharged by an overzealous or inexperienced auditor who comes knocking. If you never ask about what rights you have, you'll never know when an auditor is trying tax you unjurstly.
Our free initial consultation can help you address those issues so you can at least feel comfortable in knowing the rights you do have when the audit starts. When the customer wants access to the boat, the storage company uses the forklift to haul the boat back to the water.
Even if the customer were allowed temporary access to the boat, it would only with the consent and oversight of the storage company. Like the safety deposit box example above, this is a clear case of bailment because the boat storage facility assumes complete possession and control of the boat at all times.

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