January 2010


African-Marinated Mahi Mahi With Sadza    

 

 
Marinade:
1 Tbsp. lemon
1 tsp. ginger
2 Tbsp. peanut butter*
1/4 c. tomato juice
1 Tbsp. garlic, chopped
1 tsp. curry powder
hot chili peppers to taste
Sadza:
1 c. cornmeal, finely ground
4 c. cold water or chicken stock
1 tsp. Garlic
1 tsp. Cumin
 
Blend marinade ingredients and marinate the Mahi Mahi for 24 hours. Broil.For Sadza: Mix the cornmeal with the remaining ingredients in a sauce pan. Heat the mixture while whisking continuously. Cook until cornmeal is soft and mixture is thick–approximately 10-20 minutes.
 
 
 
 

What Property Qualifies for 1031 Treatment?

To qualify for a tax deferred exchange under IRC §1031 both the relinquished and the replacement properties must be held by the Exchanger for investment purposes or for “productive use in their trade or business”. The Exchanger’s purpose and intent in holding the property, rather than the type of property, is the critical issue. The use of the property by the other parties to the exchange (buyer and/or seller) is irrelevant. The following are examples of qualifying properties:

Bare land Farmer’s farm

Commercial rental Residential rental

Industrial property Doctor’s own office

30-year leasehold interest Percentage interest in investment property

Under IRC §1031 the following properties do not qualify for exchange purposes:

1)     Stock in trade or other property held primarily for sale (Note: this includes property held by a developer or other dealers in property);

2) Securities or other evidences of indebtedness or interest;

3) Stocks, bonds, or notes;

4) Certificates of trust or beneficial interests;

5) Interests in a partnership (Note: the partnership can elect out of partnership status under IRC §761(a));

6) Choses in action (this is a right to receive money or other personal property by judicial proceeding).

It is important to note that the intent by the Exchanger to hold the property for personal use will prevent the property from qualifying for exchange treatment. Therefore, second homes will not qualify for tax deferred exchange treatment unless the taxpayer changes how they treat or use the second home. For example, a taxpayer could “convert” their second home to a valid exchange property and establish this intent by properly renting the property and holding it as a legitimate rental property. See Rev. Rul. 57-244, 1957-1 C.B. 247. However, the taxpayer cannot just simply rent the taxpayer’s residence and expect it to automatically qualify for exchange treatment. Bolaris v. C.I.R., 776 F.2d 1428 (9th Cir. 1985). Many taxpayers own vacation homes, which are rented out during the time when the taxpayer is not using the home. Even though under IRC §280A a vacation home may have a portion of its deductions disallowed if it is used for personal purposes under the “14-day rule”, an Exchanger can argue that if the vacation home is partially used in a trade or business (renting it), the vacation home should be eligible for tax deferred exchange treatment upon it sale. However, there may need to be a bifurcation of uses as is also required for a home office use in a personal residence. Rev. Rul. 82-26, 1982-1 C.B. 115.

In many instances taxpayers use a part of their personal residence for a home office for business purposes. In this case when the taxpayer sells the personal residence, the transaction must be split such that the portion used for business purposes is treated separately for tax purposes from the portion used for a personal residence. Rev. Rul. 82-26, 1982-1 C.B. 115. The taxpayer could then qualify the entire transfer for tax-free treatment; the business portion could qualify for a tax deferred exchange under IRC §1031 and the personal residence portion could qualify for a tax-free sale under IRC §121 provided the transaction otherwise met the exemption requirements of IRC §121. Naturally, consultation with a tax advisor is important whenever a taxpayer changes how they intend to hold property.

1031 Do’s and Don’ts

DO advanced planning for the exchange. Talk to your accountant, attorney, broker, lender and Qualified Intermediary.

DO NOT miss your identification and exchange deadlines. Failure to identify within the 45 day identification period or failure to acquire replacement property within the 180 day exchange period will disqualify the entire exchange. Reputable Qualified Intermediaries will not act on backdated or late identifications.

DO keep in mind these three basic rules to qualify for complete tax deferral:

Use all proceeds from the relinquished property for purchasing the replacement property.

Make sure the debt on the replacement property is equal to or greater than the debt on the relinquished property. (Exception: A reduction in debt can be offset with additional cash; however, a reduction in equity cannot be offset by increasing debt.)

Receive only “like-kind” replacement property.

 DO NOT plan to sell and invest the proceeds in property you already own. Funds applied toward property already owned purchase “goods and services,” not “like-kind” property.

 DO attempt to sell before you purchase. Occasionally Exchangers find the ideal replacement property before a buyer is found for the relinquished property. If this situation occurs, a reverse exchange (buying before selling) may be necessary. While the IRS has recently provided guidance for reverse exchanges in Revenue Procedure 2000-37, Exchangers should be aware that reverse exchanges are considered a more aggressive exchange variation because some other entity must hold title to either the Exchanger’s relinquished or replacement property for up to 180 days pending the completion of the exchange transaction.

DO NOT  dissolve partnerships or change the manner of holding title during the exchange. A change in the Exchanger’s legal relationship with the property may jeopardize the exchange.

Obama Administration Announces Financial Incentives and Uniform Process for Short Sales National Association of REALTORS® Government Affairs Division 500 New Jersey Avenue, NW, Washington DC, 20001 REALTOR® is a registered collective membership mark which may be used only by real estate professionals who are members of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® and subscribe to its strict Code of Ethics

 Responding to the call of the National Association of REALTORS®, on May 14, 2009, the Obama Administration announced incentives and uniform procedures for short sales under its new Foreclosure Alternatives Program (FAP). For borrowers who are unable to retain their home under the Making Home Affordable Loan Modification Program, the servicer may consider a short sale or, if that is not successful, a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure. Participating servicers must comply with program requirements so long as they do not conflict with contractual agreements with investors.

Borrowers (Homeowners). Borrowers/homeowners qualify under the FAP if they meet minimum eligibility requirements for the Home Affordable Modification program but don’t qualify for a modification or do not successfully complete the three month trial period. Before proceeding with a foreclosure, servicers must determine if a short sale is appropriate.

Incentives. Incentives include: (1) $1,000 for servicers for successful completion of a short sale or deed-in-lieu of foreclosure; (2) $1,500 for borrowers/homeowners to help with relocation expenses; and (3) up to $1,000 toward the cost of paying junior lien holders to release their liens (one dollar from the government for every $2 paid by the investors to the second lien holders).

Standardized Documents. The program will include streamlined and standardized documents, including a Short Sale Agreement and an Offer Acceptance Letter. The goal is to minimize complexity and increase use of the short sale option.

Property Valuation by Appraisal or BPO. Servicers will independently establish both property value and minimum acceptable net return, in accordance with investor requirements. The price may be determined based on an appraisal or one or more broker price opinions (BPOs), issued no more than 120 days before the date of the short sale agreement.

Timeline. In the Short Sale Agreement, servicers must give borrowers/homeowners at least 90 days to market and sell the property, or up to one year, depending on market conditions. Property must be listed with a licensed real estate professional with experience in the neighborhood. No foreclosure may take place during the marketing period (at least 90 days) specified in the Short Sale Agreement.

Commissions. The Short Sale Agreement must specify the reasonable and customary real estate commissions and costs that may be deducted from the sales price. The servicer must agree not to negotiate a lower commission after an offer has been received.

No Borrower Fees. Servicers may not charge fees to borrowers/homeowners for participating in the FAP.

Program Expiration. The program is in effect through 2012.

Deed-in-Lieu of Foreclosure Option. Servicers have the option to require the borrower/homeowner to agree to deed the property to the servicer in exchange for a release from the debt if the property does not sell within the time allowed in the Short Sale Agreement (plus any extensions).

First-Time Home Buyer Tax Credit

 

$8,000 Home Buyer Tax Credit at a Glance

 

The tax credit is for first-time home buyers only.

The tax credit does not have to be repaid.

The tax credit is equal to 10 percent of the home’s purchase price up to a maximum of $8,000.

The credit is available for homes purchased on or after January 1, 2009 and before December 1, 2009.

Single taxpayers with incomes up to $75,000 and married couples with incomes up to $150,000 qualify for the

full tax credit.

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