Tangible personal property

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Tangible personal property is mainly a tax term which is used to describe personal property that can be felt or touched, and can be physically relocated. For example: cars, furniture, jewelry, household goods and appliances, business equipment. In many states, tangible personal property is subject to ad valorem property taxes in addition to property taxes applied to land and structures. These taxes are levied mostly by local governments, but they are regulated at the state level.

New Mexico Statutes define tangible personal property as “tangible property other than real property having a physical existence, including but not limited to supplies, equipment, materials and printed materials.”

Tangible personal property contrasts from real property (or real estate), in the sense that real property is immovable and is permanently attached to a single location.

See also: intangible property

[Last updated in August of 2021 by the Wex Definitions Team]