Resolving a Family Dispute Over Inherited Property – Keeping or Selling – With a Trust Loan, in Conjunction With Prop 19

New Benefits Provided to Families by Proposition 19

Unlike prior years, Proposition 19 now gives every CA homeowner an exclusion from reassessment; available in every county – in other words, 100% statewide. This particular change now enables California residents to purchase a more expensive home, in any county, rather than a more inexpensive home to keep the tax relief benefits of the base year transfer.

If a more expensive primary residence is purchased, there is now a rather complex formula to minimize base year value. Moreover, Proposition 19 now increases the number of times an exclusion from reassessment, or rather certain exclusions,  may be used by homeowners over age 55, up to three times in a lifetime.

Generally this option revolves around a common family or sibling conflict that typically has beneficiaries insisting on selling their inherited property shares strictly for as much cash as they get – which they finally realize their co-beneficiary sibling buying them out can provide, dispensing with a realtor’s 6% commission, closing costs, legal costs, and processing fees. plus all sorts of annoying, ancillary charges.

While the beneficiary buying them all out gets to retain the family home, generally with the help of an estate & trust lender, and often with an estate attorney watching over their shoulder, it becomes obvious tight away to all concerned that this trust loan / Prop 19 buyout solution furnishes a win-win formula for everyone. The trust lender funds the trust and provides “equalized distribution” so every sibling who is selling their shares receives an equal amount.

Paying Trust Expenses

For beneficiaries, when a trustee passes away, there is often not enough cash or “liquidity” in an estate or in a trust to pay debts an initial trustee owed, such as attorney fees, medical bills, mortgage and personal loan debt, and other financial obligations. A trust loan can help resolve these debts.

Helping Families Avoid Property Tax Reassessment

Many attorneys as well as trust lenders truly believe that a loan to an irrevocable trust is the safest, most secure and most beneficial option available to beneficiaries – to keep their inherited home at a low base rate, or walk off with a good deal of cash from selling their property shares.   Depending on which way they chose to go.
One or more family members, beneficiaries, retaining an inherited family home, buying out siblings that want to sell their inherited property, discover quickly enough that this is a viable option. But the siblings who want to keep their family home have to take great pains to avoid triggering reassessment.

Even with a parent-child transfer, using a parent-to-child exclusion (from property reassessment) – when inheriting property while keeping a low property tax base – how do you know for sure you’re not paying more property tax than you should be paying? 

New homeowners have to consult with their attorney and trust lender, or CPA, to make sure they are taking the correct steps right from the beginning of the buyout process, to retain the low property tax base their parents had, thanks to CA Proposition 13, avoiding fair market (i.e., current) property tax reassessment.  It’s a good thing there is new access for homeowners to “CA State Board of Equalization” & “Property Taxpayers’ Bill of Rights”

Without loans to irrevocable trusts, this type of property transfer would be seen as a sibling-to-sibling transfer and would trigger current property reassessment, the outcome being a huge tax hike! Beneficiaries keeping an inherited home through this sort of solution ends up saving on average $6,200 in yearly property taxes.

Borrowing against an irrevocable trust ensures that the process moves directly through the estate and locks in a low property tax rate – with the ability to keep parents property taxes, keeping property at a low base rate through the parent-child transfer and parent-to-child exclusion.

Inheriting Your Parents’ California Home with a Low Property Tax Base

Inheriting Your Parents' California Home with a Low Property Tax Base

Inheriting Your Parents’ California Home with a Low Property Tax Base

Let’s face it – Proposition 19 isn’t Proposition 58… However, we can still make use of favorable property tax relief benefits under Prop 19, such as inheriting CA property taxes; as long as we abide by the new rules & regs.  Under California’s Prop 13, the County Assessor’s office is not allowed to increase the appraised value of property except by 2% max. Unless there is a “change in ownership”. Even if the valuation of your home goes up.

Maintaining a Watchful Eye on Your Local County Tax Assessor

As the Albertson & Davidson law firm blog illustrates in an example – “If you bought a house in 1995 for $100,000, but that home is now worth $2,000,000; the county tax assessor is not allowed to value your home at $2 million for real property tax purposes. Instead, the value is limited to $100,000, plus a small percentage equal to the consumer price index or 2%, whichever is less…

….as such, the real property probably has an appraised value of around $125,000. The real property tax is approximately 1% of the property’s appraised value. In this example, the real property tax on a house valued at $125,000 is $1,250. Whereas, the real property tax on a house valued at $2 million is $20,000. Proposition 13 effectively saves the real property owner around $18,750 in tax ($20,000 – $1,250). That’s a huge savings… etc.”

Protecting Your Family From Property Tax Reassessment 

In fact, if the original purchase of your inherited home goes back three or four generations, back to your grandparents, or even great grandparents – the tax hike could crippling. Even for an affluent family with higher than average cash flow.  Sure, if you’re on the 1% list, you can absorb this kind of tax hike… But how many people do you know on that list? Are you on that list?

Probably not, as we’re talking about roughly 1% of the public… maybe 2% to 3% of all homeowners in California. And of course this depends on geographical locale – what neighborhood your home is in. If you’re in Santa Barbara, or Santa Cruz, or San Jose, or in the Hollywood Hills, or in Santa Monica or Beverly Hills… you’re likely to be able to weather that type of tax hit.

It sounds complicated, but in fact it’s actually pretty simple.  When someone passes away, say your parents, and the property is transferred as an inheritance to their grown child-beneficiary, the home retains a low valuation, as long as you avoid triggering property reassessment at “fair market” or current rates, by a “change in ownership”… with the help of an estate attorney and a trust lender – through a parent-to-child exclusion… inheriting CA property taxes from parents; avoiding CA property tax reassessment… and saving your family tens if not hundreds of thousands of dollars, now and in the coming years ahead!

Proposition 13 and Proposition 19 will still enable you to retain your parent’s low original tax rate with a valuation of the property’s original low valuation. However, if you don’t do this correctly, your local friendly local County Tax Assessor will reassess the property forward to its’ current value, and inheriting CA property taxes from your parents, at their low base rate, will no longer be possible. 

Getting Financing & Guidance from a Reliable CA Trust Lender

No matter where you live or what your particulars are… If you’re set on keeping an inherited home from your parents, you have to file a parent-to-child exclusion document. In fact, the best way to make sure you do not trigger property reassessment and run into this sort of financial pit-hole, is to work with a reliable trust lender, specializing in loans to trusts and estates – like Commercial Loan Corporation in Newport Beach, where you can get all the help you’ll need to make sure everything goes properly and smoothly…

So you can safely and securely buyout your siblings; and retain sole ownership of your inherited family home – if indeed that’s what you want to do.  Either way, at least you’ll know what your options are, to keep yourself and your family informed and secure… keeping your  most valuable asset – your home – protected!  This is precisely why eligible California homeowners are moving quickly on new CA property tax relief opportunities

Plus, your trust lender and estate attorney (for good measure) will make sure Proposition 19 works perfectly in conjunction with an irrevocable trust loan to result in minimizing reassessment and establishing a low property tax base. Likewise, most Californians agree, without reservation, that Time is Ripe to Become Better Acquainted With the Parent to Child Property Tax Transfer

The #1 Win-Win Property Tax Solution for CA Families  

Everyone wins with an irrevocable trust loan beneficiary buyout solution… and that’s not just marketing-talk. Your co-beneficiaries will end up selling out to a beneficiary intent on keeping the family home, and walking off with an extra $14,000 to $15,000 as opposed to using a realtor to accomplish the same type of property sale.

Also, if your parents are deceased, and the family home is transferred from a grandparent to a grandchild, then the grandchild can access the same exclusion as the Proposition 19 parent-child exclusion.

If you’re an average middle class or even upper middle class homeowner, and not a member of the 1% high net worth club – you’re probably going to want to take advantage of an exclusion from reassessment.  Plus, you’re going to want to be able to access your right to keep a low property tax base by avoiding property tax reassessment, to be able to transfer parents property taxes with a property tax transfer — to keep parents property taxes through a parent-child transfer… ultimately inheriting property taxes from parents.

However, there are some pitfalls you need to look out for… The parent-child exclusion has to be filed with the County Tax Assessor inside of three years from your decedent parent’s passing. If you miss this critical deadline you’ll be hit with a “supplemental assessment” that will impose a higher property tax hit on you that includes all the years you did not request a parent-to-child exclusion. Again… it’s always that fine print you need to be aware of!

Whatever happens, if you are set to receive house or other real property from your parent, be sure that your parent-to-child exclusion form gets filed properly and on time. If you miss the deadline, and don’t complete this form correctly, the ramifications can be financially crippling. So be careful!

Claim for Reassessment Exclusion

Loans to trusts and Proposition 19

Loans to trusts and Proposition 19

As we all now know, new tax law in California, impacting the parent-to-child exclusion and grandparent-to-grandchild exclusion to legally avoid property tax reassessment, became active 2/06/21.  The “base year value transfer provision” went into affect 4/01/22. The State Board of Equalization (BOE), along with the CA Assessors’ Association, established seven new forms for County Tax Assessors…

Forms to deal with new property tax laws:

1) BOE-19P, Claim for Reassessment Exclusion for Transfer Between Parent and Child Occurring on or After Feb 16, 2021

2) BOE-19G, Claim for Reassessment Exclusion for Transfer Between Grandparent and Grandchild Occurring on or After Feb 16, 2021

3) BOE-19B, Claim for Transfer, Base Year Value to Replacement Primary Residence for Persons at Least Age 55 Years

4) BOE-19C, Certification of Value by Assessor for Base Year Value Transfer
  
5) BOE-19D, Claim for Transfer, Base Year Value to Replacement Primary Residence for Severely Disabled Persons

6) BOE-19DC, Certificate of Disability

7) BOE-19V Claim for Transfer of Base Year Value to Replacement Primary Residence for Victims of Wildfire or Other Natural Disaster

Remaining excluded from property reassessment

The transfer of what lawyers and trust lenders now call a “principal residence” or “primary residence” between a parent and child can be excluded from property reassessment… Meaning reassessment which would increase property taxes significantly – if the fair market value, meaning current valuation, of an inherited “family home” on the date of transfer – is less than the “sum of the factored base year value” plus $1,000,000.

So if the current or “fair market” value of an inherited family home (on the date it’s transferred) goes over the sum of the “factored base year value” plus $1,000,000 – the amount that is over this sum amount will always be added onto the so-called factored base year value.  Unless these new Prop 19 tax laws are repealed. But for now, that is the way things are. 

And with the help of a good trust lender and estate attorney… we can  make good use of the popular Proposition 58 property tax breaks, transferring property taxes in California under Proposition 19; taking full advantage of the useful (albeit now-limited) CA property tax transfer, in order to transfer parents property taxes to legally avoid property tax reassessment when inheriting property taxes through a parent-child transfer or parent to child property tax transfer, otherwise known as a California parent to child exclusion from property tax reassessment – to retain inherited property, and at the same time keep parents property taxes intact.                 

Deadline to Submit Documentation

The form “Claim for Reassessment Exclusion for Transfer Between Parent and Child” which occurred on or after Feb 16, 2021 has to be completed and filed as of 3-years from the purchase or transfer of an inherited property – or before the transfer of that property to a 3rd party. Or whichever is sooner.

So if the claim form hadn’t been completed and filed by or after Feb 16, 2021, it will have to be filed inside of 6-months after the date of mailing of the notice of “supplemental” or “escape assessment” for the property.

If a claim isn’t filed in this manner, the exclusion will be approved but starting with the calendar year in which the claim is filed.  We realize this is a bit daunting, perhaps confusing to some… however your attorney or trust lender will explain exactly how this all works in detail.

Proper Transfree Forms

Also, a “transferee” must complete and file a Claim for Homeowner Property Tax Exemption (BOE‐266) or Claim for Disabled Veteran’s Property Tax Exemption (BOE‐261‐G) within one year from the date of property purchase or transfer.

For transfers that were implemented before Feb 16, 2021, you have to use the Claim for Reassessment Exclusion for Transfer Between Parent and Child form (BOE‐58‐AH).

If you require assistance obtaining a loan to a trust, please complete the following form or call 877-464-1066 to speak to a qualified Trust Loan representative.

Property Transfer in California Between Parent and Child

California Parent to Child Property Tax Transfer

California Parent to Child Property Tax Transfer

Ability to Transfer Property Taxes to Children

Let’s say you’re inheriting an aging but beautiful home from your parents, with a terrific pool, and fireplaces everywhere… with a wooden deck the family has conducted so many marvelous surf & turf barbecues on – with that brand new grill, with your favorite smoked hickory-flavored charcoal… And plenty of ice-cold drinks.

Just walking around the backyard near the grill brings back wonderful emotional family memories when you and your siblings inherited the entire property from your parents and – as your lawyers referred to it – the property was “transferred” to a new owner – in this case you…. despite the fact that your siblings are determined to sell out their property shares.  While you are determined to avoid triggering crippling property tax  reassessment!  At all costs.  So you talk to your family lawyer, and call a reliable trust lender to discuss your ability to transfer property taxes to children… Like the well known Commercial Loan Corp in Newport Beach. 

In which case a parent-to-child exclusion is secure, and makes a lot of sense – working with an irrevocable  trust loan, in conjunction with Prop  19, which has basically replaced the Proposition 58 parent-child exclusion. And simply requires a careful, but determined, step-by-step process – to reach the desired outcome – to avoid current property reassessment; while buying out property shares inherited by siblings, and nailing down sole ownership of that wonderful old inherited home with all those lovely old  dreamy family memories!

How to Avoid Triggering Property Tax Reassessment

It’s terribly important to pay attention to good advice from your attorney,   and your trust lender, on mistakes to avoid when transferring a property tax base… In most cases, your inherited property is generally reassessed by your friendly neighborhood CA County Assessors Office; while the new owner pays a higher property tax. The parent-child exclusion was voted into law on Nov 6, 1986… enabling beneficiaries to inherit property from parents, smoothly and quickly – avoiding property tax reassessment and     keeping a low property tax base when inheriting a home.

Thankfully,  new rules for property tax transfers in California  are  still  giving parents the ability to transfer property taxes to children without any issues – and enables a family/parent oriented beneficiary (usually the favorite child!) to  buyout siblings’ share of inherited property and transfer parents’ property taxes through a standard property tax transfer – getting a transfer of property between siblings accomplished without a miserable property tax hike slamming you out of the blue. 

Transferring a Family Home to Beneficiaries

As most of us know by now, given the publicity Proposition 19 has received – at the root  of all this, it’s simply a matter of inheriting property taxes at a profoundly lower rate from parents… with the ability to transfer smoothly from parent to child,  and keep parents property taxes basically forever – for that inherited family home at least. And possibly more, if you have the right lawyer, and the situation  merits it.

In other words, as estate and real property attorneys used to put it, “Avoiding property tax reassessment is why people take advantage of exclusions from tax reassessment under Proposition 58 .” And as they phrase it now, “Avoiding property tax reassessment under Proposition 19 property tax exclusions ”.  C’est la vie.

Skipping a generation, if property transfer is managed from a grandparent to a grandchild, as long as the the beneficiary’s parent is not alive, inheriting or transferring property will thankfully not increase property taxes.

For a free benefit analysis on transferring a property tax base from a parent to a child on an inherited home, you can complete the following form, in just a few minutes….

Article 13-A of the California Constitution

Protecting Californians From Arbitrary Tax Hikes

Proposition 13 once protected all taxpayers, homeowners and non-homeowners — by maintaining a 2/3 vote requirement in order to pass most tax increases, including state sales and income tax. Intentionally making it more difficult to raise taxes on residents. Particularly critical with respect to property taxes.

Unfortunately for middle class tax payers, a tax measure entitled “Proposition 39” was approved in 2000 by a thin razor edged margin after a massively budgeted PR & marketing campaign was launched by a few Silicon Valley billionaires who thought it would be advantageous to make middle class homeowners pay for their Silicon Valley corporate tax breaks. Similar to our recent tax breaks for mega-wealthy Americans and high-end corporations. Again, mainly pulled from the pockets of middle class homeowners and working families. A sad testament to tax inequality.

So-called “Proposition 39” revised the 2/3 vote requirement for certain bonds to 55% — making it way too easy to pass those bonds, since they are paid back only through increased property taxes. Again, wealthy hands in the pockets of middle class families.

Property Tax Postponement Instead of Property Tax Relief

The State Controller’s Property Tax Postponement Program allows senior or elderly homeowners, blind homeowners,  and severely disabled property owners, to take advantage of a marginally helpful “tax deferment” affecting this year’s property tax bill. When the more equitable solution would obviously be total or partial exclusion from these property taxes; especially in the midst of a severe Pandemic — with subsequent economic failings and short-comings, with no real end in sight.

Over the past 44 years, the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association has battled and confronted California based special interest organizations, such as the CA Association of Realtors, groups, bureaucrats, and public-employee unions, among others, who benefit from government spending.

Beginning in 1978, Proposition 13 was determined to protect home ownership from overly greedy, destructive taxation. Therefore California property owners strive to continue enjoying the $528 billion that the Proposition 13 and Proposition 58 (now Proposition 19) Howard Jarvis Tax Revolt has saved homeowners by helping them, overall, to avoid property tax reassessment; allowing families to transfer  property between siblings without a crippling property tax reassessment, avoiding a sibling to sibling buyout.  Enabling beneficiaries to transfer parents property taxes to themselves through property tax transfer relief, when inheriting property, and subsequently inheriting property taxes from a parent — thereby inheriting property while keeping a low property tax base.

Hence, allowing inheritors to keep parents property taxes basically forever… generally with property tax transfer relief from a parent-child transfer — ultimately, through an established parent-to-child exclusion.  Something no California homeowner or beneficiary wants to lose.

CA Property Tax Relief Under Attack

Is CA Proposition 13 Property Tax Relief Under Attack?  

California taxpayers are in particular danger due to the fact that the CA State Legislature and real estate plus other special interests are looking to continue efforts to unravel property tax relief in California simply to accelerate real estate sales and commissions, plus increase overall property tax revenue to state coffers.  Just for the record, Proposition 13 has saved California taxpayers $528 billion.

If critics of property tax breaks unravel Proposition 13 any more than they already have, real-estate-business owned politicians can accelerate property taxes on homeowners by 400%, or north of that figure, by destroying Proposition 13 protections that keep restraints on increases of sales tax with new property tax relief law in California that could add hundreds of billions of dollars, going forward, of new tax revenue from new rules for property tax transfers in California — costing every middle class and working CA family a small fortune in increased property taxes!

The Proposition 13 bullet-proof “2/3 vote requirement” to protect  Californians from greedy, careless or arbitrary property tax hikes has been watered down and severely weakened by those who oppose property tax relief in California, and can easily be further unraveled during this upcoming year. 

Could California See the End of Crucial Property Tax Breaks?

Lifting the 1% or 2% cap on the maximum property tax rate is their next objective. After that, Proposition 13 and $528 billion could be stolen from California taxpayers forever.  Needless to say, this would not be healthy for the state. We could possible see the end of CA Proposition 13 property tax relief — possibly the demise of the parent-to-child exclusion… most damaging of all.  How these politicos and certain members of the real estate community  could support such irresponsible tax hikes on the backs of middle class Californians, is almost impossible to ascertain or understand.  

Yet it’s entirely possible that in the state of California we could actually begin to see the unraveling  of third-rail protections supporting low tax rates from parent-child transfers — the end of laws allowing homeowners to avoid steep property tax reassessment  when inheriting property taxes… for so many decades protected so well by Prop 13 and  Proposition 19 (formerly Proposition 58).

These were once unchangeable built-in property tax breaks protecting parents and their children when they be easily able to transfer parents’ property taxes and keep parents property taxes basically forever, in perpetuity. when inheriting a home from Mom or Dad.

Proposition 13 has forced local governments to manage their finances better — one reason the initiative had such overwhelming popular support.  Most cities and counties have been very successful under Proposition 13. If some have failed, the problem was not Proposition 13. It was mismanagement, lack of sensible  planning… and reckless spending.

A Second California Tax Revolt

A Second Tax Revolt will take time, energy, resources. Funding. Organizations such as the Commercial Loan Corporation; the Cunningham Legal law firm; Kevin Kiley’s ACA-9 initiative; and the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association are all providing planning and backing for the support and rescue of Property Tax Relief in California… Proposition 13; and the possible return to Proposition 58 with unlimited parent–Child Exclusion rights for homeowners and beneficiaries inheriting property from parents.

Simply some of the reasons the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Assoc. is launching their “Second California Tax Revolt”, to build and protect property tax relief measures for all Californians, regardless of age, station, or net worth.

It took four million Californians to pass Proposition 13. HJTA hopes to mobilize as many to defend Proposition 13, because that’s what may be needed to keep $528 billion in our pockets — our honest,  hard working California property owning pockets.  And not flowing into mercenary state and county tax collectors’ pockets.  

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Transferring a Property Tax Base

Transferring Property Taxes in California

Transferring Property Taxes in California

The Right Advice & Tax Plan from a Trust Lender 

Much to the relief of Californians who own property and/or are in the process of inheriting a home from a parent, for example, in any of the 58 county across the state, the parent-to-child exclusion from property tax reassessment is still alive and well in all 58 counties, in 2022.

However, quite often, new homeowners and beneficiaries trigger a property tax hike strictly by accident, and end up facing thousands upon thousands of dollars in property taxes from property tax reassessment – that could and should have been avoided, had the right advice and tax plan been in focus.

High property values in California highlight the need for careful property tax planning. If you have owned your property for many years Generally, in terms of property taxes, homeowners who have owned their home for a long time typically have a lower assessed value than current or “fair market” property value tends to be.

Parent-to-Child Exclusion

As far as parent to child transfers are concerned, when one beneficiary who is inheriting a home decides to buyout property shares inherited by co-beneficiaries (siblings) – to have complete ownership of said property – it’s easy to misstep and mistakenly trigger property tax reassessment.

A parent to child property tax transfer in is line with the effort to  avoid property tax reassessment under Proposition 19’s parent-child exclusion, retaining a parent’s Proposition 13 low property tax base. Therefore a loan to an irrevocable trust working in conjunction with Proposition 19 allows us to transfer property between siblings – buying out property from siblings.

Likewise, beneficiaries, upon inheriting property from parents, still have a property tax transfer at their disposal to transfer parents property taxes and keep parents property taxes when inheriting a parental home, and thus inheriting property taxes, but at a low  base rate.  Hence, the use of a parent-child transfer… enabling the use of the invaluable parent-to-child exclusion – bottom line, helping us avoid any possibility of triggering property tax reassessment! 

Choosing the Right  Trust Lender, to Keep a Low Property Tax  Base While Buying Out Inherited Property From Siblings

We prefer a trust lender who can formulate and deliver the more reliable, simple Proposition 19 rules & regs, in conjunction with an irrevocable trust loan to equalize beneficiary buyouts of inherited property shares.

We have found that any type of unconventional property financing other than irrevocable trust loan funding may run into unpleasant surprises such as property tax reassessment – due to an abrupt change in control, or revised ownership!

LLCs, Corporations, or various Partnership entities owning real estate are subject to a myriad of property tax rules & regs that can change on a dime, often disqualifying beneficiaries from taking full advantage of the parent-to-child exclusion, to maintain a low property tax base, and perhaps buying out inherited property shares from co-beneficiaries – avoiding property tax reassessment and running headlong into pricey financial surprises.

Transferring Your Base Year Value Under Proposition 19

Given new changes to Proposition 19, if you happen to be over age 55, or are severely disabled, you may be able to transfer your home’s current base year value to the purchase of a different home, thereby keeping your property tax payments low. To qualify, you must acquire your new home through a sale transaction. If you acquire any portion of the new property by gift or inheritance, you will not be able to transfer your base year value.

What Has Made Proposition 13 So Popular, from 1978 to Now?

Proposition 13 Saves Californian Property Owners Thousands

Proposition 13 Saves Californian Property Owners Thousands when compared to property tax systems in other states.

CA Proposition 13: Consistency and Necessity

In the 1970s property tax hikes were completely out of control. Especially for working families and middle class folks who were dependent on a fixed income… retired veterans and other government and municipal workers like retired postal workers; homeowners receiving Social Security, and retirees living on a modest pension; etc.

During the past twelve months the average home price in California accelerated by over 19%, the California Association of Realtors reports – seemingly unaware that this very statistic belies what they believe is a good thing (the unraveling of Proposition 13 and property tax relief generally in California), in actual fact it’s a good thing for realtors… not the middle class and working families across the state! In fact it shows that Proposition 13 is as necessary as ever.

Stabilizing CA Property Taxes Throughout All 58 Counties  

Kris Vosburgh, Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association exec director tells us: “It [Prop 13] resulted in the stabilization of neighborhoods and allows people to stay in the neighborhood where they bought homes and not be forced out by increasing tax. The basic benefit to both new and old home buyers is that you know what your taxes are going to be from year to year.  One doesn’t have to shudder in fear.”

And shuddering in fear was exactly what middle class families did when tax time tolled around every year.  You never knew what your tax hike was going to look like. There was no stability in property taxation… No consistency you could rely on.

Before Prop 13: An Epidemic of Elderly & Retiree Foreclosure

In Los Angeles County in 1975 and 1976, over 400,000 senior  homeowners, many who were elderly, in their 80s or 90s, could not pay off their property taxes, simply because they couldn’t afford the accelerated tax rates and were either at risk of being forced onto the street – or literally were put out onto the street with clothes, furniture and all! Many who were elderly folks and nowhere else to go. Not a pretty picture.

Elderly couples and other older individual homeowners living on a modest fixed income were impacted most of all by these arbitrary property tax hikes. Many were living free and clear but were in grave danger of losing their home, despite the lack of debt, mainly because they simply could not afford excessive property taxes.

And as millions of older middle class Californians were being pushed out of their homes, onto the street, the heroic Howard Jarvis assembled over 1,500,000 signatures to qualify a statewide tax measure that would finally end excessive property taxes – and protect home ownership for working families and middle class homeowners – namely, Proposition 13.

California Property Tax Relief: Facts and Case Studies

One story tells the tale aptly, with respect to the urgent, pressing  need California had for fair and equitable property tax relief… It  concerned a 56 year old criminal defense attorney by the name of Cameron Quinn, a Lido Isle resident, who lives there with his wife and 18-year-old daughter.

Beneficiaries of Proposition 13, Cameron’s parents bought his house in 1966 for $45,000. After they died, the house passed to Cameron and the benefits of Proposition 13 were his to take advantage of.  Last year their property taxes were $966 for a home assessed at $95,403. “Where else could we go where it would be less?” Mr. Quinn tells us, “The fact that the taxes are low is a salvation!” 

And of course this eventually included a property tax amendment called Proposition 58.  So with robust property tax transfers in California intact, and both official property tax relief measures working – to avoid property tax reassessment – beneficiaries and homeowners could take full advantage of parent to child property tax transfer opportunities to keep parents property taxes with unfettered ability to transfer parents property taxes; officially known as a basic parent-to-child exclusion from reassessment – all to avoid property tax reassessment on one’s primary residence.

Mr. Quinn calls Proposition 13 “a financial security blanket and a far cry from the Costa Mesa condominium where we first lived, with not much more than a television, a bed and an old piano.”

This home is more than just a product of property tax relief for Me. And Mrs. Quinn. This is where they went after their first date, where his mom, a piano-teacher, and friends serenaded the couple. And just as it passed from Mom to them, this home will be passed again from Dad to daughter. “We wouldn’t move,” said Mr. Quinn’s 57 year old wife Neeta Quinn, “This is where we’re going to live forever.”

CA Parent to Child Property Transfer & Buying Out an Inherited Home From Siblings

Avoiding Property Tax Reassessment on an Inherited Home

Avoiding Property Tax Reassessment on an Inherited Home for Californians

Most beneficiaries in California favor a parent to child transfer to avoid property tax reassessment.

As long as a transferred home is, initially, a primary family residence and the offspring receiving gifted or inherited property is moving in as a primary residence,  plus an  exclusion is claimed inside 12 months from change in ownership… remaining aware of the fact that the first $1,000,000 is not reassessed.

At any rate, despite certain limitations, the financial savings from this process  are genuine savings for beneficiaries inheriting property – avoiding property tax reassessment – and for many children of parents leaving a beloved family home to them.  This often makes the difference between being able to keep that family home, or losing it – frequently at a financial loss.

Plus, besides trust distribution to co-beneficiaries to keep an inherited home – also being able to take advantage of property tax breaks such as the right to transfer parents property taxes during a property tax transfer, with the legal right to keep parents property taxes basically forever… after inheriting property taxes through a standard parent-child transfer, and parent-to-child exclusion!

We also have to remember that, in 2022 California, a loan to an irrevocable trust, working in conjunction with Proposition 19, allows a beneficiary to buyout inherited property shares from siblings looking to sell their inherited property… thereby speeding up the trust distribution process. 

Moreover, an irrevocable trust loan also generates a much higher profit margin for beneficiaries selling their inherited property shares, by avoiding expensive home prepping for a sale, as well as avoiding a costly 6% realtor commission, expensive legal fees, and other pricey closing costs.  All in all, avoiding property reassessment, property tax hikes, and higher expenses  in general for all concerned.

When a trust loan is used to process trust distribution to co-beneficiaries, on average each beneficiary or sibling gets an additional $15,000 in distribution as opposed to selling the home to a conventional buyer. The family member keeping a family home also saves money – generally $6,500 or more per year in property tax savings by avoiding property tax reassessment on an inherited property.

That’s why many families inheriting a home from parents go to a reliable trust lender to be able to take full advantage of Proposition 19 tax benefits. Beneficiaries and homeowners continue to take advantage of Proposition 19 and Proposition 13 and basic property tax transfers in California and related tax breaks… keeping a low property tax base when inheriting a home – inheriting property taxes at a low rate from parents.

Saving beneficiaries many thousands of dollars, this is often a life-saver – and could, in many ways, be considered a final act of parental affection, from parent to child.

Understanding New Prop 19 Rules & Calculating Taxable Value

California Proposition 19 Property Tax Transfer

California Proposition 19 Property Tax Transfer

Parent-to- Child and Grandparent-to-Grandchild Transfers

Prop 58 & Prop 193 allowed parents, and in certain qualified cases grandparents, to transfer their existing property assessments of a “principal” or “primary” residence of any value  without  triggering property reassessment, which is generally required upon a change in ownership – even when real property was used as a rental property by [offspring] beneficiaries.

Prop 58 & Prop 193 enabled assessments of inherited residential or commercial property up to $1,000,000 – covering additional real estate being gifted to, or inherited by, an heir.

Now, under CA Proposition 19 (as of Feb 16, 2022), parents and grandparents can leave their home, with Proposition 13 base year value intact, to their children or grandchildren – as long as inherited property was the primary residence of the parents or grandparents – as well as the primary residence of  the beneficiaries moving into the home that is now being inherited…

Moreover, a beneficiary has plenty of time to move into an inherited home as a primary residence (12 months), plus a good deal of time to file a Homeowners’ Exemption (one year) to qualify for a parent-child or  exclusion.

A Prop 19 exclusion from reassessment of a primary residence of  a parent or grandparent, keeping a low property tax base when inheriting a home, plus all updated requirements, qualify beneficiaries for these types of base-year-value transfers; avoiding property tax reassessment and enabling these new homeowners with the right to transfer property between siblings through a loan to an irrevocable trust; plus all the usual property tax relief bells & whistles that go along with property tax transfer. 

Naturally, this includes the right to transfer parents property taxes and keep parents property taxes by inheriting property taxes generally through a parent-child transfer and parent-to-child exclusion (from paying currently reassessed property taxes).


Selling An Old Home – Distributing Cash Equally Among Heirs

A trust loan from a trust lender, to create equal cash distribution for co-beneficiaries looking to sell off their inherited property, can help those beneficiaries  become sole primary owners of an inherited residence.  Moreover, a primary residence homeowner in California over age 55 can transfer a low property tax base to a “replacement residence” (that is also a primary abode).

In order to qualify for a CA Prop 19 exclusion from reassessment (of your property taxes) – at the same time keeping your parents’ low property tax base – distribution of your trust funds to all beneficiaries have to be equal… especially when it comes to beneficiaries that are selling their inherited property shares to a co-beneficiary inheriting the same property. Each sibling must get the same amount whether it is cash, equity or other assets – to qualify for a Prop 19 exclusion from reassessment.

Many times the trust or estate will not have enough cash or other assets to make an equal distribution.  In these situations the trust or estate can borrow the money from a third party (not the person taking the property) and use the loan proceeds to pay off the other siblings’ share.

A Commercial Loan Corp Trust Loan Calculator will demonstrate “how long it will take for the property tax savings to cover the costs of a loan from a third party. One needs to be fairly certain they will live in the home longer than the time it takes to break-even on third party loan costs or have a plan to transfer the low tax base to another property after the sale of the parents’ home.”