PART TWO: The Home Protection for Seniors, Severely Disabled, Families & Victims of Wildfire or Natural Disasters Act

Move Anywhere in California and Avoid Property Reassessment 

General consensus of California property tax experts who have been watching Proposition 19 even before it was voted into law on Nov 3, 2020 confirm that property owners age 55 or older who are “severely disabled” are eligible for special property tax relief benefits…

And, with all due respect, this is precisely one of those items that Californians in talk about as being a bit vague – in other words, what exactly constitutes a “severe” disability versus a disability that is perhaps “not so severe”. The California State Board of Equalization (BOE), who defines rules and regulations for Proposition 19, hasn’t yet fully determined certain fine-tuned details. 

However, even though trust loans in conjunction with Proposition 19 as well as trust lenders and the CA parent-child exclusion are not discussed in great detail, we still know with a great deal of certainty  that you can still receive a large loan to an irrevocable trust to  buyout a co-beneficiary’s inherited property shares, while at the same time keeping a family home at the parents’ low property tax base.  It doesn’t need to be discussed into the ground to know that these tax breaks are still alive and well, like many others.

The same applies to victims of a “wildfire”, such as we see throughout  California these days; or a “natural disaster” such as an earthquake or a flood.  Point being, how is one to determine how much damage from a natural disaster or wildfire is “sufficient damage” to qualify a homeowner over the age of 55 to be fully eligible for certain property tax relief benefits?

At any rate, one can move as many as three times statewide during a lifetime. This is an increase from the previous property tax law that allowed only one move. During this move, or these moves, one can transfer their lower property value to recently purchased property – moreover, this can done in any of the 58 counties statewide, whereas previously permitted counties were limited to pre-approved counties only.

Therefore if you are over 55, as far as property taxes are concerned, the world is yours, as it were.  This is somewhat ironic, as older Americans usually find themselves at the short end of the stick when it comes to age bias… Not any more, when it comes to real estate.

 Moving to a New Home, While Taking Advantage of Prop 13?

Prop 13 instituted a base-year value for property tax assessments and limitations on the tax rate and assessment increase for real property. While Prop 19 changed some of the 1978 property tax breaks protected by Prop 13, there are certain things you can do to retain its’ original intentions when moving to a new home in California – and make sure you are aware that:

a)  the purchase of your new home, or new home construction, occurs within two years of the sale of the prior property;

b)  your original property is reassessed when it’s sold;

c)  even though the goal is to avoid property tax reassessment on an inherited home – if the new property costs more than the old property, the difference will be reassessed.

d)  The BOE has stated formally:

The transfer of the base year value must be on or after April 1, 2021, and not the purchase or sale of either the original or replacement property. If the replacement primary residence is purchased or newly constructed on or after April 1, 2021, the primary residence may be sold either two years prior to or after the purchase or new construction of the replacement primary residence and qualify.

Critical Facts Concerning Proposition 19 

An inherited home must be a primary residence to be eligible for property tax breaks.   Moreover, $1,000,000 of the other property is eliminated.  As a primary residence, the assessed value plus $1,000,000 will not be reassessed (and according to BOE will be adjusted for inflation starting Feb 16, 2023).

•  Heirs (children of parents leaving real property as a gift or an inheritance) has to file a homeowners’ exemption or disabled veterans’ exemption within 12-months instead of 3-years as stipulated previously; and the inherited home must be a primary residence.

•  If the current property value is larger than the assessed value plus $1,000,000 , the property will be reassessed at fair market value (i.e., existing property tax rates) minus $1,000,000.

Proposition 13 Rules & Regs Still Alive and Well in California

The BOE confirms that only one heir has to move into an inherited house.  That heir (i.e., child of the parent leaving the property to the heir) is expected to move into that primary home within twelve months of the date of the parent’s death.  The heir is also expected to complete and file a “homeowner’s  exception claim” within one year of the parent’s death. Even if the parent does not own 100% of the property, a $1,000,000 exclusion will apply to their share.  It is essential that the heir understands that the inherited home must be  a primary residence; however, a period of “temporary absence” is allowed.

It is crucial for those families involved with agricultural activities, and inheriting a family farm, to take note of the fact that a family farm does not have to be a primary residence.  If the date of parental death, or transfer, is prior to Feb 16, 2021 – it preserves Proposition  13.  Naturally, all the correct documents must be  completed, and filed within the proper deadline. 

Gift deeds signed by Feb 15, 2021 do not have to be recorded by that date, in accordance with a CA State Board of Equalization stipulation on Feb 16, 2021.  The $1,000,000 assessed value exclusion applies to inherited assets and gifts.






How the Role of a Trust Lender Can Impact Beneficiaries in California

Trust Loans in California

How to get a trust loan in California

As most Californians know, property tax measure Proposition 13, voted into law in 1978, capped property tax rates at 1%–2%. Property could now be reassessed on a property transfer from parent to child, with the right to transfer parents property taxes protected by the parent-to-child exclusion which was folded into tax measure Proposition 58, voted into law in 1986, and as you know is now revised, having morphed into 2021 Proposition 19 property tax law, with new rules for property tax transfers in California…

This continued the exemption for property transfers between parent and child, avoiding property tax reassessment with the right to transfer parents property taxes when inheriting property taxes from a parent; with the ability to keep parents property taxes long-term with this type of standard Proposition 19 protected property tax transfer, parent to child transfer and of course parent to child exclusion.

When there is only one heir, child of the parent, property transfer is relatively simple, knowing you have the right to transfer parents property taxes involving only one heir.  Conflict typically surfaces only when there are two or more siblings inheriting property shares… with one heir looking to retain the parent’s home, while the other heir or heirs insist on selling off their inherited property shares; generally calling for a “non-pro-rata” trust distribution, meaning that each heir with an interest in the inherited property receives an equal proportion of the entire estate with the help of a trust lender and a Prop 19 trust loan – however not necessarily of each asset. It’s important to note that non-pro-rata distribution by a trustee can have a major impact on property taxes.

Not using a Prop 19 trust loan solution, the use of personal funds to pay off a sibling co-beneficiary’s interest in a home would be viewed as a “change in ownership” therefore the outcome of this transaction would trigger property reassessment of that beneficiary’s inherited property share. If there are two heirs, each having inherited 50% of the property, the remaining 50% would be open to property tax reassessment. On the other hand, if there were three beneficiaries and only 1/3 of the property were retained, 2/3 beneficiary interest being bought out – 2/3 of the property would be vulnerable to property tax reassessment.

However, with the help of a trust lender funding an irrevocable trust, buying out the beneficiary or beneficiaries looking to sell off inherited shares – the fact that the trust is actually borrowing the funds to equalize distribution to the siblings that are selling out, and funding is not in fact distributed to the sibling or siblings themselves – property tax reassessment is successfully avoided.

For example, let’s examine the Anderson family in North Hollywood, who owns a home valued at $800,000, free and clear of any debt. In other words the family owns the house outright. Assessed value is $100,000. Let’s say, for the sake of argument that sibling Nina insists on selling the home, and wants a cash for her share; while another sibling, Jasper, is determined to keep the home.

(Option A) Jasper cleans out his savings account and pays out $400,000 to buy out Nina’s inherited property shares. This results in a “change of ownership” with respect to Jasper’s 50% property buyout, and the assessed outcome is a 50% property tax reassessment with a significant increase in property taxes.

(Option B) Jasper enlists the help of a trust lender, who provides a $400,000 loan to an irrevocable trust, along with getting approval to allow the trust loan to work in conjunction with Proposition 19; enabling Jasper to keep his parent’s low Proposition 13 protected property tax base. The third-party trust lender also sees to it that that funds are distributed equitably to Nina – in fact with more cash than any outside buyer would be likely, realistically, to offer – with no change in ownership, and no property reassessment; and therefore no property tax hike. The trustee at this point transfers the entire property to Jasper who plans to pay off the $400,000 loan to the irrevocable trust by cashing out a life insurance policy.

Thad Farrell, Proposition 19 / trust loan account manager (Commercial Loan Corporation at 877-756-4454) at the Commercial Loan Corp trust lending firm in Newport Beach, sums up the process as follows:

Usually siblings that want to retain inherited property from parents come to us first, generally after being referred to us by a law firm. Middle class families that can’t afford to pay reassessed taxes on an inherited home… Which pretty much sums up most families these days! Siblings inheriting a home have two options. They can sell or keep their inherited property. In other words, your family has to make up their mind – what they want to do, sell or keep. Selling it is far more expensive. By keeping the home, each beneficiary looking to sell out receives approximately $15,000 extra in a cash trust distribution when compared to selling the home to a regular buyer; because they avoid costly realtor and real estate sale expenses. A realtor typically charges 6%, there can be costs to prepare the home for sale and closing costs such as title, escrow or assistance with buyer closing costs on top of that… Each beneficiary keeping the inherited home winds up saving on average $6,200 (each) in yearly property taxes. So do the math, for starters. Whereas, if the property is reassessed – the cost can be very high.

At the end of the day, there are positive emotional outcomes from this process as well as financial savings and extra funds… However the key result is the fact that when everyone walks away from using a trust loan to take advantage of the proposition 19 parent to child property tax transfer, they all understand that they have just completed a win-win transaction… In other words, unlike most business transactions where there is often a winner and a loser – in this scenario everybody wins and no one loses.

 

Proposition 13 and Proposition 19 in CA 2021 ~ Q & A

Property Tax Information

Inheriting A Home From A Parent in a Trust or Probate

In June of 2021, we looked into the well known California estate law firm Cunningham Legal, who specializes in Estate Planning, Trust Administration, Asset Protection and Advanced Tax Planning — to see how they interpret and answer questions regarding property tax relief benefits in California in 2021, in a Q & A format. 

As the firm points out, were it not for Proposition 13, and now Proposition 19, in terms of protecting your property from reassessment, all properties in California would be immediately reassessed at full current market value when a change of ownership occurs either by death, gift, or sale.  When a property is “transferred,” or what the California State Board of Equalization calls a “change in ownership.” Which is why the parent-to-child exclusion is so crucial, with respect to protecting your property from reassessment.

Question: How does Proposition 13 affect the amount of property taxes California property owners have to pay every year?

Answer: Proposition 13, an amendment to the California Constitution which passed overwhelmingly in 1978, rolled back residential property taxes on a principal residence to 1975 levels, capping them at 1% of assessed value (plus some local additions by county). Assessments were allowed to rise at a maximum of 2% a year — even though real estate prices in California continued to skyrocket.

Question: How can heirs inheriting property from a parent still claim a limited exclusion from reassessments under Proposition 19?

Answer: If you don’t take pre-emptive action, such as establishing a Family Property LLC, then whether you give your child a home or they inherit it you must apply Proposition 19 rules and regulations to a principal residence, unless it is a farm.

Question: What Prop 19 regulations are now in effect for new homeowners inheriting a home from a parent?

Answer: The child of a parent leaving property must move into a transferred or inherited home (or family farm) as their principal residence within one year. Assuming the child does occupy the home — if the value is less than the factored base year value plus one million dollars (indexed for inflation), the base year value will not change.

Question: Who can take advantage of a limited exclusion from property reassessment under Proposition 19 inherited property transfers, moving a low property tax base over to a new home?

Answer: If you’re over 55, protecting your property from reassessment has actually gotten easier… You can now do this three times during their life instead of just once. Other eligible people include those with severe disabilities as well as victims of natural disasters and wildfires.

Question: What happens with multiple children under Prop 19? Must all the children move into the home as their principal residence?

Answer: This still remains to be seen…The California courts are still determining how a lot of details will be handled under Prop 19.

Question: Do you have to occupy an inherited house forever? How long must you live there as your principal residence before a reassessment is triggered?

Answer: Again, we don’t yet know, and further guidance is needed from the CA Legislature.

Question: Does this mean that all properties, principal residences or otherwise, are subject to possible reassessment when ownership is transferred by inheritance or otherwise, so the math can be done on new property taxes?

Answer: Probably yes. This will greatly increase the workload on assessment offices, and possibly create a significant backlog in cases.

This is why law firms such as Cunningham Legal are not simply waiting for answers from the California Courts and the Legislature. Estate law firms like this are proactively building programs to aid in  protecting your property from reassessment — such as their Family Property LLC to help middle class families save on property taxes. Lawyers like Rachelle Lee-Warner, Esq., Partner at Cunningham Legal, are always closely watching legal and legislative opinions to devise the best possible outcomes for their clients.

According to Cunningham Legal, these days even regular middle class families in California need an attorney to guide them regarding inherited property, to make sure Proposition 19 and Proposition 13 are being taken advantage of correctly; to avoid common errors.  The firm stresses the avoidance of common mistakes with grave consequences…

Question: What are some examples of mistakes people make with Prop 13 when it comes to the title of inherited property?

Answer: If you change the title of a house, you are possibly triggering property tax reassessment.

Question: What is a big mistake people make when they leave property in a Living Trust?

Answer: You name multiple beneficiaries in a Living Trust, which includes your house. Some of the beneficiaries are your children and some are not. As a result, the possibility of your children avoiding a reassessment may be lost.

Question:  Are forms a potential area for mistakes?

Answer: Certainly.  For example, you move your industrial property into an LLC so you can protect yourself while renting it out, accidentally triggering a reassessment because you didn’t file the right form on time.  This is precisely why a good attorney is so important, to protect your properties from reassessment.

Question: What paperwork mistake can parents make with respect to leaving property to their children?

Answer: They do not consider creating a Family Property LLC to protect your properties from reassessment when you die.

Question: What else would be a common paperwork error?

Answer: Your heirs simply don’t know they have to file a claim for reassessment exclusion under Proposition 13 within three years, or they may lose it.

Question: What is another common mistake many beneficiaries  make after inheriting a home from a parent?

Answer: Many beneficiaries do not realize that under Prop 19 they must reside in your primary home to claim an exclusion after your death, never establishing clear residency.

Question: Are there other frequent mistakes people make after inheriting property, with a home transferring from parent to child?

Answer: A transfer occurs without proper registration with the state—and 20 years later, the new owner owes 20 years of “supplemental” back taxes at an enormously higher rate. 

Question: What is a common error often made by parents leaving property to children?

Answer: People think that they are passing on a “principal residence” but they haven’t lived there for years, and the state objects.

Question: What about avoiding fair market rates on the transfer of a residential multi-unit property?

Answer: People think they can pass on the parent-to-child exclusion for a multi-unit property, but they only occupy part of it, and the state objects. There are no simple solutions. That’s why folks involved in any of these issues require legal support.  They need a good lawyer!

                            _____________________

Families and individual property owners can set an appointment for Estate Planning, Trust Administration, Asset Protection, or Advanced Tax Planning by calling their office at 1-866-988-3956. You can also contact Rachelle Lee-Warner, Esq., Partner at Cunningham Legal; Office: (805) 342-0970 Web: http://www.cunninghamlegal.com


 

Helpful Advisors During a Property Tax Transfer on an Inherited Home

California Property Tax Transfer

California Property Tax Transfer

Transferring A California Property Tax Base On An Inherited Home

If you’re a member of one of the many families who owns real property in California – it would be wise to understand how much Prop 13 and Proposition 19  can affect property tax reassessment, no matter where you live in the state. 

In fact, it’s never been more important than now to understand how profoundly these property tax relief measures can impact your life – plus how important it is to do everything correctly when dealing with property tax breaks like Proposition 19 and Proposition 13.

Number One Strategy: Avoid Making Mistakes!

For whatever reason, a fair amount of residents do not fully understand how these tax breaks work, and how to make them work.  The problem is, families often trigger reassessment of their property taxes by accident, due to a variety of reasons – refusing to hire an estate attorney simply to save money; faulty data; or mistakes filing information; missing document deadlines… so on and so forth.

Consequently, what can be lost can be significant… such as the ability to avoid property tax reassessment, to miss out on property tax breaks such as parent-child transfer and the parent-to-child exclusion; the right to transfer parents property taxes, to keep parents property taxes after a CA property tax transfer, when inheriting property taxes.

It’s not difficult to mishandle a transfer of property when inheriting a home, or mishandle the drafting of a trust in such a way that expectations towards a cap on property taxes are disappointed. Of course, these types of errors and subsequent property tax  reassessment brings great happiness to the parties responsible for collecting property taxes all over California.

Families that are concerned with making sure these processes go smoothly generally enlist advice and/or the services of a real estate law firm or estate attorney such as Rachelle Lee-Warner, Esq. at Cunningham Legal, or a property tax consultant like Michael Wyatt Consulting, or perhaps a Trust Lender such as Commercial Loan Corp.

Proposition 19 and Revisions to California Property Tax Relief

It is difficult to avoid the fact that property tax breaks in California have been impacted, one way or the other, by Proposition 19; which was voted into law Nov 2020, becoming active on Feb. 16, 2021.

Under Proposition 19, a parent can transfer their primary residence and low property tax base to their children (i.e., heirs) — allowing  offspring to move into an inherited home rather quickly, within 12-months, as a principle residence.  Although, if the home is valued at more than $1,000,000 it may be reassessed, with an impact on the parent-to-child exclusion from current tax rates.  On the other hand, if you’re over 55, physically impaired, or a victim in some way of the frequent wildfires California has been experiencing, or some other natural disaster such as a flood or earthquake — you can be a recipient of numerous property tax breaks on top of CA property tax transfer (discussed in detail elsewhere within this Blog).

However, beneficiaries of parental property have other options, such as working with a trust lender such as Commercial Loan Corp, for example, in addition to having expertise in CA property tax transfer,  the ability to provide funding to an irrevocable trust, in order to buyout co-beneficiaries looking to sell off their inherited property shares, as well as establishing a permanently low property tax base. If you think you may benefit from a Proposition 19 property tax transfer on an inherited home, you can reach Commercial Loan Corporation at 877-464-1066 for a free benefit analysis.

Inheriting CA Property & the Proposition 19 Parent-Child Exclusion in a Pandemic Economy

Keep a parents low property Tax Base on an Inherited Home

Transfer a Property Tax Base on An Inherited Home

The Need to Transfer Parents CA Property Taxes, Saving Money & Pausing Property Taxes Until a Normal Economy  Returns

Whenever America experiences an economic crisis people look for alternative solutions, and often reach “outside the box” for answers. Some activities outside the box that have been  suggested for working families, that supposedly will help families spend less and save more, are an in-home project called “homesteading”, which is apparently affording some middle class California families a little relief in the midst of a challenging pandemic.  State leaders are concerned, and are trying to achieve positive results with unconventional efforts. 

“Homesteading” has some California residents relying on creative ways to spend less and save more… reuse and get every little bit of use from all household goods. For instance, maximizing scraps of vegetables into family size batches of vegetable soup. “Making more with less” is the message from some state leaders. 

This sort of activity may help some middle class working families, but what is really required right now – as we deal with a pandemic impacted economy and unstable real estate environment, with many people concerned about the possibly of foreclosure – is lower cost of living, since increased revenue is still difficult in many quarters.

Approximately 30% of the companies impacted by shutdowns across the country are still inactive.  With many employees still working at reduced  compensation, from home, although thankfully many have returned to work under normal conditions.  The website  https://www.edd.ca.gov  tells us that the number of Californians employed in April of 2021 was 17,378,100, an increase of 36,800 jobs from March’s total of 17,341,300 and up 1,753,700 employed workers in April of 2020.  The number of unemployed Californians as of April 2021 was 1,576,100. 

The state is working its’ way back up from the severe pandemic unemployment crisis that began a year ago.  However, still severe enough to merit additional cuts in taxes, most notably property taxes as this would be the least problematic tax to pause until Covid has been completely stamped out, with everyone back at work in normal numbers and in normal fashion. 

Minimizing or actually pausing or curtailing certain taxes is something the state government can actually continheriting-ca-property-the-proposition-19-parent-child-exclusion-irol, and implement without dramatically upsetting the economy.  Therefore,  the California government would do much better to minimize property taxes, for example, or put them off completely until the pandemic lifts and normalcy has returned to the work place; rather than proposing ineffective tax deferments, as they have done, that have to be paid within a few months anyway.  

Property taxes are an example of taxation that the government can control, and survive without, for a year or two.  Intentionally pausing residential and commercial property taxes for California property owners would most likely not offset the state government in any material way, and would help many homeowners  in a major way.

However, if actually pausing property taxes is not a realistic hope as the pandemic lingers… then we can at least look to California leaders to better communicate property tax relief tools and solutions to the public.  Californians still have an intact Proposition 13 to look to, and  robust Proposition 19 property tax breaks to utilize, especially for those over 55 – as well as allowing new homeowners,  and  beneficiaries inheriting property, to be able to take advantage of parent-to-child transfer rights; to make use of a  loan  to an irrevocable trust, inheriting property while keeping a low property tax base; to transfer parents CA property taxes upon inheriting property taxes and keep parents property taxes as an outcome of a property tax transfer from dad or mom.  And, naturally, the parent-to-child exclusion from reassessment at “fair-market”, or current, property tax rates. 

State leaders must understand that California residents who are unaware of the power of property tax breaks like the ability to transfer parents CA property taxes should be made more aware of property tax savings obtained from Proposition 13 and Proposition 19 – through press releases, new media, YouTube, high-profile news sites, relevant real estate and personal finance websites, and blogs. For example like CA Assemblyman Kevin Kiley is doing, sponsoring urgent “Amendment 9” to protect property tax relief for working families in all 58 counties.

It is important that beneficiaries inheriting property from parents should also be made aware of trust lenders, and how irrevocable trust loans work with Proposition 19 to lock in a low Proposition 13 property tax base plus help to buyout siblings’ inherited property  shares, with a sibling-to-sibling property transfer.

When the pandemic lifts and the real estate market levels off along with the overall middle class and upper middle class job-based economy (the real economy, not the stock market), we shall see where we are.  However, for now this is perhaps the only way, along with other similar measures, to put more spending cash in Californians’ pockets,  and slowly get the California economy back on track for middle class and  upper middle class property owners, beneficiaries inheriting property from parents, and working families.

Lowering or Pausing CA Property Taxes to Combat Effects of the Pandemic

California Property Taxes

California Property Taxes

Removing certain taxes is something the CA Legislature can control to lessen the current financial strain on middle class  Californians. Income taxes and sales tax pose greater political obstacles at the revision stage, and payroll taxes fund Medicare and Social Security to a large extent – therefore California would do well to look carefully at decreasing or putting property taxes on hold, until the pandemic lifts and normalcy has returned to some degree.

The California Legislature proposing tax deferments for a few months will not help the state if thousands of homeowners are about to be foreclosed on and evicted – hence paying no property taxes thereafter; as an example of non-taxation that the government will survive without for a year or two.  Putting property taxes on hold  would not trouble California in any meaningful way.

Certainly, lowering or removing property taxes is a logical solution for property owners who are in trouble all over the state. Insisting on all property taxes being paid no matter what is a poor answer right now, as long as the Covid crisis continues causing shutdowns, mass unemployment, widespread under-employment, and unprecedented health issues.

If pausing property taxes is not a realistic possibility, then the state government would be wise to spend more time and energy educating the public on property tax breaks that are available to them, such as how to still take advantage of Prop 58, as well as Proposition 13 and who, as well as how, folks can make use of Proposition 19. Communications on this to educate the public in California is not nearly as robust as it could be.

Increased, easy to understand information dissemination on Proposition 13 and Proposition 58, as well as Proposition 19 and parent to child property tax transfer on an inherited home.  This would help Californians take more advantage of sibling-to-sibling CA property transfer in conjunction with Prop 19; to become more familiar with parent-child transfer rights – taking advantage of every key property tax break… establishing an exemption from paying  current, property tax rates when inheriting or transferring a primary residence, within a 12-month period.

More residents should be exposed to information about getting a trust loan, to take advantage of a sibling-to-sibling CA property transfer in concert with Proposition 19, to be able to lock in a low Proposition 13 property tax base – buying out siblings’ inherited property tax shares without issues, plus equalizing distribution, in fact for more money than an outside buyer would offer, for heirs that want to sell their inherited property shares.

. All of these decreases would help California to assist residents in spending less on taxes, if not implementing a total hold on property taxes until the pandemic is completely under control and life returns to normal in California, and throughout America as a whole.

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, the Michael Wyatt Consulting firm, or the Commercial Loan Corp, at (877) 756-4454 

Keeping Your Parent’s Low Property Tax Base When Inheriting a Home

Keeping Your Parent’s Low Property Tax Base When Inheriting a Home

Keeping Your Parent’s Low Property Tax Base When Inheriting a Home

How to Keep Parents Property Taxes In 2021

What was once the parent-to-child property tax break called CA Proposition 58 has now morphed into a property tax relief measure to help avoid property reassessment, called CA Proposition 19… active as of Feb 16, 2021.  

Estate and trust lenders are accustomed to teaching beneficiaries and new homeowners freely, in unfettered fashion, how to keep parents property taxes with Proposition 13 or Proposition 58 property tax breaks. But they are still funding trusts with a loan to an irrevocable trust, and helping clients to establish a low property tax base, to avoid property reassessment… Property tax specialists like this are still helping beneficiaries buyout a sibling’s share of inherited property, through a trust loan – the transfer of property between siblings. 

Property tax relief experts are still showing beneficiaries how to keep parents property taxes on a property tax transfer, taking advantage of the parent-to-child transfer or parent-to-child exclusion (from current property tax rates); helping families inheriting a home to transfer parents property taxes when inheriting a home, and inheriting property taxes. 

Help From Experts  

Some California firms with property tax relief expertise have been encouraged to get creative, to meet new property tax challenges and obstacles head on.  Firms such as Michael Wyatt Consulting in Corona who specializes in base year value transfers and parent-child transfer exclusion; real estate issues and property tax relief; or well known trust lender and Prop 58 / Prop19 experts Commercial Loan Corp in Newport Beach, who specializes in irrevocable trust loans and lending.  This particular trust lender is now offering heirs and beneficiaries inheriting a home from parents a free consultation for property tax savings – to help beneficiaries inheriting a home from parents to keep the parents’ low Proposition 13 property tax base; while also taking full advantage of Proposition 19 and Proposition 58.

This type of evaluation for property tax savings is designed to simplify a relatively complex process, helping heirs evaluate the benefits of a loan to an irrevocable trust, specifically for beneficiaries who want to buyout siblings’ inherited property shares, while keeping inherited property at their parents’ low property tax rate – as well as avoiding costly expenses associated with selling property through a realtor.  

The name of the game is to simplify the use of Proposition 19, as well as the transaction between trust lender and beneficiary. A process that is often difficult for families to understand.

Inside View From an Account Manager’s Perspective

One such seasoned proponent of simplification of the Proposition 58,  trust loan process is a highly experienced account manager by the name of Tanis Alonso – a particularly hard working, dedicated senior manager, who works closely with her clients, and frequently their estate lawyer or accountant.

In a recent interview with this blog Miss Alonso described her unique personal approach to planning and implementing estate & trust loans for families; how property tax saving trust loans and Proposition 58 tax breaks factor into her family undertakings and financial proceedings, Miss Alonso tells this blog:

We don’t view each trust loan scenario as simply a ‘financial transaction.’ Nor do we see the home they’ve lived in for decades as just a ‘piece of real estate’. To us, this a ‘piece of family history’ in the making. And the process a ‘family decision,’ not a ‘transaction’…

Let’s say a property value is currently one million dollars and the current tax base is $1,200. If they were to get reassessed at current value that would be around $11,000 annually. By someone keeping the property and obtaining a trust loan to properly buy out their siblings that allows the beneficiary that is keeping the property to keep parents property taxes, to retain 100% of the Proposition 13 tax base that was paid by their parents and keep that low property tax base of $1,200.

This of course creates much greater affordability than if they were to improperly buy out their siblings and have that property reassessed. The loan to trust goes hand in hand with the Proposition 58 property tax transfer system, creating enough liquidity to equalize distributions, not sell, and allow a beneficiary to keep their parents property with their low property tax base.

Feedback From A Seasoned Property Tax Consultant

The other example we mentioned, Michael Wyatt Consulting, works in conjunction with real estate attorneys and frequently a trust lender, and formally reviews clients’ real estate values. The firm studies and forms strategy for proposed real estate transactions; ensuring avoidance of property tax assessment.

Mr. Wyatt conducts comprehensive research on real property, real estate deeds, and other instruments for accuracy; and serves as a liaison between clients and the Tax Assessor’s Office – maintaining problem-free communications with Assessors and other essential local government agencies. Mr. Wyatt explains:

We let our clients know the Proposition 58 [or Proposition 19] tax benefit entitles children of parents leaving them property to preserve the low Proposition 13 maximum 2% tax base. A California property tax transfer. However, a lot of people don’t fully understand that you have to apply for the benefit. It’s not automatic. And it doesn’t apply to the principal home. explain to them that they get the assessed value tax benefit only if it’s a non principal home. You get the assessed value waved if for example it‘s a million dollar property… You get the million excluded – but the overage is reassessed… A lot of people don’t know that.

The creators of the trust get this benefit. definition of ‘a child’ or “children” is typically the adult children of a decedent…But this also refers to step-parents. Step-parents can also transfer property to a step-child… Mom can be a step parent and can still get the benefit. In-laws get the benefit as well. You don’t have to be blood relatives.

We basically introduce the trust lender, for example Commercial Loan Corporation, as a private money lender that loans to irrevocable trusts, that applies for and works in tandem with California Proposition 58 [or Proposition 19]… for beneficiaries who are looking to sell their real property shares – for the purpose of facilitating “non pro-rata distribution”… So every heir gets an equal share of the entire overall estate – however, not necessarily of every asset.

Well, if the family in question uses the Commercial Loan Corp company that we have been using for years… the loan they provide is to a trust, and not to beneficiaries; so there is no title, and no crippling 66.66% property tax reassessment.  Well, for example, there might be three siblings… beneficiaries – and a house to inherit. And this is always important to remember.

If you’re one out of the three siblings that wants to keep the inherited house, you are definitely looking at a 66.66% property value tax reassessment – if you’re operating without a loan to a trust, or you’re using your own cash; or getting money from a very pricey institutional lender – typically with multiple restrictions and extremely strict terms.”

Mr. Wyatt sums up and simplifies a process that tends to look complicated to new clients.  At the end of the day, all families need to understand is the fact that in the end, they save a great deal of money on property taxes if they aim to keep their parent’s home.  If they are looking to sell, they simply need to understand that they will be putting lot more cash in their pocket  using the trust loan approach, rather than selling to an outside buyer.  Everything else is secondary, if you are inheriting property.

If you are interested in finding out how much you might be able to save by keeping a parents low Prop 13 property tax base on an inherited home, we suggest you contact Commercial Loan Corporation at 877-756-4454. They will provide you with a free estimate on what your annual property tax savings will be and provide you with information on the Proposition 19 process.  They can even put you in contact with a trust and estate attorney in your area if needed.

Assembly Member Kiley Introduces Constitutional Amendment 9 to Block CA Property Tax Hikes

Reinstate Propositions 58 Property Tax Transfer In California

Will California Reinstate Propositions 58 Property Tax Transfer Laws?

Assembly Constitutional Amendment 9 (ACA 9) has been introduced by Assemblyman Kevin Kiley, of Granite Bay, CA – to formally reinstate Propositions 58 and 193, and return the parent-child exclusion to full unlimited measure; without imposed limits, to the CA state constitution – restoring the ability of parents and grandparents to pass on property to the next generation without any deceptive obstacles and/or property tax increases.

The CA Legislature Assembly Constitutional Amendment 9 was  introduced by Assembly Member Kiley on May 03, 2021, regarding property taxation & the transfer of an inherited home to a principal residence, for beneficiaries. 

ACA 9 is written into the official California record, as follows:

The California Constitution limits the amount of ad valorem taxes on real property to 1% of the full cash value of that property, defined as the county assessor’s valuation of real property as shown on the 1975–76 tax bill and, thereafter, the appraised value of the real property when purchased, newly constructed, or a change in ownership occurs after the 1975 assessment, subject to an annual inflation adjustment not to exceed 2%…

The California Constitution, until February 15, 2021, excluded from classification as a “purchase” or “change in ownership” requiring reappraisal the purchase or transfer of a principal residence and the first $1,000,000 of other real property of a transferor in the case of a transfer between parents and their children, or between grandparents and their grandchildren if all the parents of those grandchildren are deceased.

On November 3, 2020, the voters approved Proposition 19. Pursuant to Proposition 19, the California Constitution, on and after February 16, 2021, removes the above-described exclusion from classification as a “purchase” and “change in ownership” requiring reappraisal, and instead excludes from classification as a “purchase” and “change in ownership” the purchase or transfer of a family home or family farm, as those terms are defined, of the transferor in the case of a transfer between parents and their children, or between grandparents and their grandchildren if all the parents of those grandchildren are deceased, if the property continues as the family home or family farm of the transferee. In the case of the exclusion so provided to a transfer of a family home, the California Constitution, pursuant to Proposition 19, requires the transferee to claim the homeowner’s or disabled veteran’s exemption within one year of the transfer.

This measure would repeal the above-described provisions of Proposition 19. The measure would reinstate the prior rule excluding from classification as a “purchase” or “change in ownership” requiring reappraisal the purchase or transfer of the principal residence and the first $1,000,000 of other real property of a transferor in the case of a transfer between parents and their children, or between grandparents and their grandchildren if all the parents of those grandchildren are deceased. The measure would apply retroactively to all effected purchases or transfers occurring on or after February 16, 2021.

Prior to 1978 with the advent of Proposition 13 becoming law, capping property tax reassessment at 2% for owned property in California, residents found themselves paying arbitrary property tax hikes more and more often, with elderly homeowners, living on a modest fixed income, being evicted when they couldn’t pay egregious tax hikes, which started to become a frequent event; and began to alienate and anger the middle class public, to an extreme degree.  It wouldn’t be an over-statement to say this widespread displeasure opened up the doors wide for a tax break like the parent-child exclusion!  Property tax breaks that enabled the middle class all across California, when inheriting property from parents, to feel justified, just like the wealthy, to be keeping a low property tax base when inheriting a home.

Middle class residents in Californians, and working families, were frustrated that rapidly rising property values had turned property taxes into what was effectively a “death tax”.  It was this overall response from the public throughout the state that left events wide open, in terms of following and supporting Howard Jarvis and his Taxpayers Association – adopting the property tax relief measure they called Proposition 13.

Under Proposition 13, which passed in a landslide in 1978, property tax assessments could no longer increase more than 2% per year until, or unless a new owner took over the property, which triggered a reassessment at current market rates. Middle class offspring inheriting their parents’ home usually figured out right away that they were going to have a real problem paying reassessed property taxes, as that tax bill was typically more than most middle class families could afford to pay every year. 

So in 1978 Californians happily accepted the ability to keep parents’ property taxes, transfer parents property taxes, and inheriting property taxes instead of paying egregious tax hikes.  The right to finally have access to  a property tax transfer from a parent, a parent-child transfer, or parent-child exclusion, was huge for California property owners… in fact, even for renters.  And certainly for residential and business, or commercial, property owners.

Then, having tasted some of “the good life”, in terms of saving on taxes,  formerly enjoyed only by the nouveau riche and old money, Californians, in 1986, voted in high numbers and passed a  measure called Proposition 58 with the approval of more than 75% of California voters.  This amended the California constitution, to state that the transfer of real estate between a parent and a child, generally property transferred from parent to an heir, would not be considered a “change of ownership” and would fall under a new property tax reassessment exclusion, something they called “a parent-child exclusion”; capping their property tax bill at the same rate their parents paid.

A decade later, voters approved Proposition 193 to apply the same exclusion as the parent-child exclusion, except it covered property transfers between grandparents and grandchildren – as long as the children’s parents were deceased.  California Proposition 193 grants the same rights to a grandchild as Proposition 58 grants to a child.

Under Proposition 58 and Proposition 193, working families could transfer a home of any value plus up to $1,000,000 of assessed value of additional real estate. This protected families that owned a small business, or a condo or duplex that was rented out for income, or a vacation property.  Therefore the death of a parent would not trigger a sudden reassessment of these properties at current high market rates, increasing yearly property taxes to such a degree that middle class beneficiaries would be forced to sell their inherited property shares right away.

Jon Coupal, president of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers’ Association, summed up this proposed tax measure in the Daily Breeze on May 9, 2021 in clear fashion, when he said:

…a slick advertising campaign for Proposition 19 tricked voters into repealing Propositions 58 and 193 without realizing the impact it would have on their own families. Prop. 19 replaced the parent-child transfer exclusion from reassessment, which has been in the state constitution for 35 years, with a narrow exclusion that only applies to homes that the heirs move into within a year and make their permanent principal residence.

These harsh provisions took effect with lightning speed in February, at a time when families were prevented by the pandemic from meeting with other family members, attorneys or tax advisers. Many people are just now finding out what happened. Letters are going out from county assessors to grieving families advising them of their new tax obligations.

This must be fixed. And it can be if Californians make their wishes known to elected representatives. ACA 9 would preserve family businesses, affordable rental properties, and home-ownership for families that otherwise would lose the benefit of the hard work their parents put in to secure their futures.

We couldn’t have said it any better ourselves.

Strengthening Proposition 19 Property Tax Relief During a Pandemic

California Prop 19 Property Tax Transfer

California Prop 19 Property Tax Transfer

In the midst of a relentless Pandemic, causing untold economic carnage, unemployment and financial damage  to middle class Californians, it would be advisable for the state to provide middle income and working class residents with the ability to not only make more money, if that were to be possible,  but to be able to spend less.

One proposed solution to accomplish this – proposed by respected real estate analysts and property tax consultants – would be expanded property tax relief; despite certain limitations and obstructions from special-interest groups and changes to Proposition 58.   Proposition 19 property tax breaks should most likely be strengthened in favor of property owners, with a robust initiative led by the Governor – rather than an unhelpful deferred property tax payment plan, such as he has already suggested.

Forward thinking tax consultants such as property tax consultant, Proposition 13 specialist, Michael Wyatt Consulting have proposed property tax breaks that save homeowners, commercial property owners, and beneficiaries inheriting property more money from property tax breaks than are currently in place.   

Well known Trust and Estate Lender  Commercial Loan Corp, furnish trust beneficiaries with irrevocable trust loans, working in conjunction with Proposition 19 benefits, can establish a low Proposition 13 property tax base for homeowners, and save inheritors thousands of dollars every year in property taxes.

These property tax reduction measures – as long as homeowners make good use of them and keep inherited property, or allow other siblings or co-beneficiaries to buyout their shares  of inherited property through a trust loan working with Prop 58 tax breaks – will avoid property tax reassessment.  This process will, in fact, create a low property tax base for the singular owner or owners of this shared inherited property.  And there indeed is one solution to enable homeowners to spend less.  

This helps middle class property owners and working families to not only spend less, but also to retain more cash in  their bank and investment accounts. Most importantly, this type of trust loan financing also helps trustees and beneficiaries resolve disputes  over assessor stated property values – as well as resolving often heated conflicts over whether they should sell to an outside buyer, or profit more by allowing a co-beneficiary to buyout their property shares while avoiding property tax reassessment of this family property altogether. As realtors call it, “transfer of property between siblings” or “sibling to sibling property transfer” – lending money to an irrevocable trust, for trust loan financing  – can resolve various squabbles and infra-family problems between estate heirs and trust beneficiaries. 

Noted originator of trust loan financing, Commercial Loan Corp President Kerry Smith; and other outspoken supporters of property tax breaks for the middle classes, such as Property Tax Relief Consultant Michael Wyatt,  Jon Coupal, President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers’ Association; and Paramount Property Tax Appeal President Wes Nichols, have all stated, repeatedly, that Proposition 13 and Prop 58 should be better protected and expanded; That Proposition 19 should be expanded to better serve homeowners; and at the same time strengthened in the courts so Amendments that can potentially wipe out property tax breaks like Proposition 58 for example, in a single vote, will be impossible to advance without a great deal of trouble and expense.

California, since 1978, is the only state where you can avoid property tax reassessment at current rates; but the state does need to better protect, not water down, residents’ property tax relief options; to keep parents property taxes… and to transfer parents property taxes as well as inheriting property taxes at a low base rate for even a secondary inherited property.

Avoiding property tax reassessment is a crucial tax relief element, and therefore should be better  protected, for new homeowners and beneficiaries inheriting a home and/or buying out a sibling’s share of inherited property   the transfer of property between siblings, sibling to sibling property transfer, the right to transfer parents property taxes when inheriting property taxes – so beneficiaries can keep parents property taxes at its’ original low base rate… which applies to every  property tax transfer,  meaning every parent to child transfer and family parent to child exclusion.

Helpful information on Proposition 13 & Prop 58 as well as property tax appeals and property tax reduction solutions can be found at niche Websites like the CA State Board of Equalization and here at Property Tax News.  Or look carefully at various sections and articles at Loan to a Trust or at  detailed, more sophisticated trust loan info-websites.  Every property owner should know what’s involved with inheriting property taxes at a low rate, or a beneficiary buyout of sibling property shares, or “transfer of property between siblings” – with new, revised Proposition 19 basic property tax relief opportunities that are available to Californians, come rain or shine.