Can a Trust Receive a Loan in California?

Trust Loans

Trust Loans

Using a Trust Loan to Minimize Property Tax Reassessment

First, what is a trust… and what is the role of a trustee?  Once we understand that, we can move on to look at minimizing property reassessment with a trust, a trust loan, and Proposition 19 tax relief benefits. 

A trust is basically a financial instrument that  allows a company or person to own or hold assets for a collection of people, sometimes a family group – typically known as “trust beneficiaries“, for lack of a better term; managed by a “trustee”.  A trustee can be an individual, or a company. The ability for a trustor to name basically anyone a trustee leaves a lot of flexibility open to the person drafting the trust with a lawyer…

However, this flexibility in choosing a trustee can sometimes be problematic, as many people are named trustee of a trust who know absolutely noting about administering or managing a trust for beneficiaries – being an older sibling, or someone’s nephew or brother-in-law, for example. Trustees often allow the little authority they have been given to harbor ”delusions of grandeur”, especially when it is a high net worth trust.

The trustee can dictate terms to beneficiaries. We frequently see trustees acting as if a trust’s real property, liquid assets, or investment funds belong to them, and not the beneficiary or beneficiaries…. Often treating beneficiaries as if they were working for the trustee when in fact it’s the other way around – a trustee is in fact working for the beneficiaries, and in our view this should be more firmly dictated by the language set forth in trusts by the attorney drafting the trust.

Can All California Beneficiaries Get an Irrevocable Trust Loan?

The answer is basically “yes”… although with some exceptions.  An irrevocable trust can use real estate assets as collateral for a trust loan to a successor trustee or a beneficiary named in a trust.  Naturally it goes without saying that a beneficiary will need approval from a trustee to receive an irrevocable trust loan.

A trust loan can then be applied to an irrevocable trust for a sibling property buyout, to minimize property tax reassessment of real property; plus there can be other assets held in trust, securitized as a trust loan, after the originators of the original trust have passed away, typically making it impossible to change, alter or revise the irrevocable trust in any way.

Trust Loans & Sibling Co-Beneficiaries

Trust loans, irrevocable trust lending, provides a relatively fast solution for sibling beneficiaries looking to retain sole ownership of inherited property – using a trust loan to buyout co-beneficiaries that are seeking a way to cash out, to sell off their inherited property shares.

With Proposition 19 in the mix, there can be a guarantee of minimized property reassessment – avoiding a fair market or current assessment of inherited property; in other words inheriting property while keeping a low property tax base.  Thereby avoiding a steep property tax burden.

In fact, if a home is a product of two or three generations of ownership, triggering fair market property reassessment will unravel an opportunity to minimize property tax reassessment, and this scan be crippling – for many affluent families, and even for some high net worth beneficiaries who might be inheriting very expensive property, but may not have a great deal of liquid assets or outside cash flow coming to them.

What is the Role of CPAs in Helping Residents With Prop 19 Establish a Low Property Tax Base

Inheriting Property Taxes in California

Inheriting Property Taxes in California

Inheriting Property Taxes in California From a CPA’s Expert Point of View

Many accountants and property tax consultants these days have reinvented themselves to some degree and have become Proposition 19, 2021 revised property tax relief experts for middle class families and beneficiaries inheriting real property, and for new homeowners in both the middle and upper middle class California income brackets. 

One such noted CA property tax relief expert and CPA, Komal Kabra from Chugh.net, has a lot of interesting things to say, from her focused CPA perspective on property taxes and property tax relief in California.  She tells us:  “Property tax law  protected by Proposition 13 levies property taxes based on a home’s original purchase price, even as the home’s value appreciates over time. Additionally, the law caps property tax at 1% of sale price, with a maximum 2% increase per year.” 

Under  new Proposition 19 property tax regulations, the number of times the tax rate can be transferred to a new home is now three times, versus once under previous tax law… if you are age 55 or older.  Value of the new home compared to the previous home can be any value; and the location of any new home can be anywhere in California. 

Admittedly, this is an excellent improvement offered by Proposition 19, however it is clear that the age issue must be seriously revisited  in the near future, and opened up to embrace younger age groups.  Although it is an interesting turnabout of American age bias, which is typically going the other way around, with bias against folks in the 50 to 60 age group and older. 

CPA Kabra goes on to say:  “Proposition 19, which delivers property tax savings to eligible property owners, including residents who are age 55 or older; Folks that suffer from severe disabilities and people who have lost their house in a wildfire or officially validated natural disaster, such as a dramatic flood or extreme earthquake.” 

Proposition 19 preserves all of these new property tax breaks, while also enabling eligible middle class and upper middle class property owners in California to transfer their lower “base year” property tax rate to a new home of any value, anywhere in the state,  up to three times – affecting homes purchased on or after April 1st of 2021.

Miss Kabra concludes, with a real-world example: “If an eligible homeowner purchases a home of a greater value than their previous home now, under Proposition 19, they will pay a blended tax rate. For example –  let’s take a middle class couple in their 60s, who own  a home worth $600,000 in Los Angeles, which they purchased in 1972 for $200,000.  Let’s say they sell their L.A. home, and purchase a new home for $700,000 in San Diego.  The first $600,000 of the new San Diego home will be taxed based on their original 1972 purchase price of $200,000.  Only the next $100,000 will be taxed based on current or “fair market” value…” 

Saving Money on Property Taxes With Help From the Experts!

There are other challenging property tax issues, as well as critical property tax relief advantages and property tax breaks, for middle class and upper middle class families to address, with which to avoid property tax reassessment, when inheriting property taxes in California…

New property tax relief advantages include the right to transfer parents property taxes and then keep parents property taxes when inheriting property and inheriting property taxes in California, associated with any standard property tax transfer; leading up to and through the parent-child transfer and parent-to-child exclusion (from carrying a “fair market”, or current, property tax burden).  Leading towards Keeping Your Parent’s Low Property Tax Base When Inheriting a Home; or inheriting a new primary residence that requires a transfer of a parent’s low property tax base. 

If done properly with a trust loan from a trust lender a low property tax base can remain in place for decades, when inheriting property taxes in California, saving residential or commercial property owners hundreds of thousands of dollars in the long run.

All the more reason for you to call a property tax consultant or a trust lender experienced in Parent To Child Property Tax Transfer On An Inherited Home as well as the use of irrevocable trust loans and Proposition 19, as well as Proposition 13, to keep your parent’s low property tax base – if you are inheriting a home, or expect to inherit a home at a low property tax rate; and plan to transfer a low property tax base to a new home down the road. 

Or, if you wish to buyout existing co-beneficiaries that are looking to sell their inherited  property shares, while you are set on keeping that same inherited property in the family – plus keeping the same low property tax base your parents enjoyed.  All of these important family issues are well worth careful consideration.

To learn more about your options when inheriting a house from parents – transferring their principle residence’s low property tax base to your new primary residence – call our main line to ask to  speak with a Trust Fund Loan or Property Tax Savings specialist at Property Tax News, or the Commercial Loan Corp, at (877) 756-4454 

Does Prop 58 Actually Exclude Transfers of Property from Reassessment?

Crucial Property Tax Breaks: “The Parent to Child Exclusion”

It would be worthwhile for a professional polling organization in California to conduct a objective poll or survey to see whether homeowners in particular are now more appreciative of the gift they were given in 1978 with Proposition 13 as well as Proposition 58 and how that excludes from reassessment transfers of real property between parents and children, used in conjunction with trust lenders such as the Commercial Loan Corp… referred to as a “Parent to Child Exclusion” or “Parent to Child Transfer” as attorneys like to call it. h

We believe it would be clear from such a poll that Californians now  see more clearly that such precious property tax breaks, more or less taken for granted for decades, are now under direct threat… from numerous organizations, such as the CA Association of Realtors (C.A.R.), the Governor of California and the California Legislature itself, supposedly sworn to protect the rights and financial well being of the general public and not of special interest groups such as C.A.R., California Conference Board of the Amalgamated Transit Unions; California Nurses Association; California Professional Firefighters of California; State Federation of Labor; California NAACP State Conference; California Senior Advocates League; California Statewide Law Enforcement Association; Californians for Disability Rights; and the Congress of California Seniors; just to name a few.

Clearly, seniors, to name one of the larger demographic groups, initially bought into the rather deceptive and confusing messaging concocted by promoters of Proposition 19. And never stepped back to open the hood and examine the hidden data-points and details inside the actual tax measure itself… In other words, examining the steak – not the sizzle. The question is, are voters – seniors specifically – now struggling with buyers’ remorse?  A quick survey would answer that question. 

Only in California do you have property tax breaks for middle class property owners such as Proposition 58 and Proposition 13.  Only in California do you have tax benefits like the Prop 58 Exclusion that enables funding to irrevocable trusts; allowing beneficiaries to buyout co-beneficiaries’ shared inherited  property.  Plus, the ability to lock in a low property tax base, in line with Proposition 13, long-term. Ironically, in most other states,  domestic trusts are mainly used for the purpose of allowing affluent families to defer taxes, or to completely avoid paying certain taxes… frequently moving funds held in trust to overseas accounts. 

At any rate, basic California property tax relief still appears to be holding up, despite a few inconveniences imposed by Proposition 19… such as forcing beneficiaries inheriting a  home from a parent to move into that inherited property strictly as a primary residence, within 12-months – or lose the right to avoid property tax reassessment.

The only other option would be to sell the old home… Frequently at a loss. However, the property tax break is basically  the same as when Proposition 58 was passed by a large margin in 1986. A home and up to $1 million in assessed value of additional real property can be excluded from reassessment when transferred between parents and children. 

This keeps the property tax bill the same, with a few inconvenient additions thrown in to keep taxpayers from getting too happy, and we imagine to make realtors happier, if they are selling more properties, as a result of having more properties to sell.  Along with the CA Legislature, who undoubtedly will rake in more cash from property taxes, despite beneficiaries’ ability to take advantage of the Parent Child Exclusion or Parent to Child Exemption – despite some of the tricky new rules & regulations.  Some will not be able to partake of the Prop 58 Exclusion, and that will undoubtedly drive more cash into the state coffers…. which will make the tax assessors happier as well!

If certain beneficiaries inheriting their parents’ home and other property want to sell their shares, they would have to pay much higher property taxes over that average year and a half time-frame, from the date of death to the close of escrow – yet they can avoid owing on average $8,500 in extra property taxes if they are careful to utilize a trust fund loan in conjunction with the Prop 58 “Parent to Child Exclusion”.

These are invaluable options left to California homeowners and commercial property owners; which should be appreciated by residents of this state, as these property tax breaks are basically  unavailable anywhere else in this country. 

We suggest that Californians try to make the most of these gifts… and at the same time, as this is no longer business as usual due to continued efforts to take these property tax relief measures away from middle class property owners — do as much as possible to actively protect these tax breaks. 

As we have now seen, like democracy itself, there is a very thin line between maintaining property tax relief, and losing it forever.

 

Dramatic Savings for Californians, with a Positive Affect on Personal Net Worth, Family Bonding and Peace of Mind

Not to over indulge in generalizations, however when you consider the Proposition 58 tax break, or Proposition 58 property transfer tax relief, in simple human terms, you can clearly see how this type of tax relief allows concerned middle class parents, many of whom without this tax relief would frequently not be able to afford to maintain homes in addition to their own primary property, enabling their young adult children to reside in a safe neighborhood, often nearby; frequently giving middle aged and elderly parents a great deal of peace of mind.

Due to Proposition 58 property transfer tax relief, parents are also able to transfer a primary residence, or perhaps other properties they may own, to their children – without their property being reassessed at market value for state taxation purposes.  Obviously, the difference between having this type of tax relief to take advantage of, as in California; or not having it, as in most other states – can be quite significant.

Click here to look further into details regarding Proposition 58, parent to child transfer, and avoiding property tax reassessment

A home in California that is owned and maintained by the same family over decades, transferred to offspring… is generally assessed at a fraction of the current value of the house and land. This typically makes it possible for young adult, and older adult, children of middle class parents, to raise their own children in a safe middle class environment, as well as saving thousands if not tens of thousands of dollars per year.

The type of key financial support that Proposition 13 and Proposition 58 afford home-owning families in California, often helps to keep a tight knit family closer together, to choose to live nearby as opposed to settling for a less expensive and less desirable dwelling, often far away from family. As we often have noticed, multiple home ownership by doting parents often reveal homes that are near each other — thereby preserving an even tighter family bonding fabric, while establishing a safe environment for the parents’ grandchildren to grow up in.

Whereas if children, and grandchildren did not have this form of tax relief enabled by Proposition 13 and Proposition 58, allowing property transfers without crippling property tax increases – they very well may have had to settle for a less attractive, less safe neighborhood, often far away from the parents, and often exposing children to less desirable elements, and school systems.

The most popular, or well known, scenarios affecting peoples’ lives directly in California; qualifying homeowners for a Proposition 58 tax exclusion, including the transfer of real property:

(a) from parents to children;
(b) from children to parents, as individuals;
(c) from grandparents to grandchildren as individuals;
(d) between joint tenants;
(e) from trusts to individuals;
(f) from individuals to trusts.
(g) to or from any child born of the same parent(s);
(h) to or from any step-child, any son-in-law or daughter-in-law; or any child who was adopted prior to age 18.

Naturally, the most popular scenarios enabling qualification for “property exclusion” include property transfer by inheritance, by gifting, or by sale.

California Proposition 13

California Proposition 13

California Proposition 13 is also known as “The People’s Initiative to Limit Property Taxation”.  Prop 13 is an amendment to the Constitution of California that became law in 1978. When voters in California passed Proposition 13, the maximum amount of tax on real estate no longer could exceed 1% of the total cash value of your home, or additional real property you owned.  Moreover, Prop 13 limited yearly increases of assessed value of real estate to an inflation factor not to exceed 2% per year.

Another component of Proposition 13 transfer of property is that it prohibits reassessment of new base year value, except when there is a change in ownership of real property, or new construction. This permits homeowners in California to refinance a mortgage without being concerned that their home, or real  property, will be reassessed for market value. This is often of particular concern to elderly homeowners, who frequently reside in the same home for decades; and therefore have many opportunities to re-mortgage, with a long-term payment schedule in place.

In 1986 California voters passed Proposition 58, which, in a sense, works in concert with the limits that Proposition 13 places on your home’s tax base.  In other words, Proposition 58 excludes transfers of real property, between parents and children, from current market value tax reassessment. Prop 58 allows property to be transferred from parent to child, or vice versa, with the use of a Trust.  For example, this enables an adult child to inherit a home from a parent, and keep the parents’ low Proposition 13 tax base. The ability to do this  frequently saves beneficiaries receiving property from parents literally thousands of dollars per year, and in many cases tens of thousands of dollars, in property taxes.

There are some restrictions when it comes to proposition 58.  Properties held in a Trust must meet certain requirements in order to qualify.  For instance, one  requirement states that no funds from an acquiring beneficiary can be placed in the Trust.  In that particular circumstance, a loan is often received from a third party, and placed in the Trust. You can learn more about third party loans for California Proposition 58 qualification here.

There have been some discussions in the media, and among the political class, in California, about repealing both Proposition 13 and Proposition 58.  However, as you can imagine, both Propositions have a great deal of support among California homeowners.

In fact, 42 years after California Proposition 13 went into law, it still enjoys popular support among most California homeowners.  It’s interesting to note that a survey by the Public Policy Institute of California revealed that 57% of  adults polled support the measure.  However,  58% would prefer to allow  homeowners keep Prop. 13’s tax relief and property protections (particularly for seniors) while imposing higher property taxes on business owners.  33% of those polled oppose that sort of taxation on business owners in California.

What do you think? Let us know… We’ll be publishing the results of this survey, so your participation is valuable, and greatly appreciated!  (Your name and contact info will of course remain confidential and private, and will never be shared with any third party entities)…