Vacation-home owner misunderstands tax break

DEAR BOB: A friend owns a vacation home at Lake of theOzarks in Missouri. She said if she sells, she has 45 days to buy another pieceof property, perhaps a condo in Florida, before she owes tax on her profit. Isthis correct? –Sue E.

DEAR SUE: No. Your friend is mistaken. She should consulther tax adviser.

Purchase Bob Bruss reports online.

Unless she is selling a rental property, which can qualifyfor an Internal Revenue Code 1031 tax-deferred exchange, she will owe capitalgain tax on her sale profit. There are no special tax breaks for the sale of anonrental vacation property.


DEAR BOB: You often discuss partition lawsuits where oneco-owner wants to sell but the other co-owner doesn’t. Does a judge have togrant permission for the partition lawsuit to force the sale of a property? Ifso, when one co-owner wants to buy out the other co-owner, might the judge denya partition sale and allow the purchase by the co-owner? –Mark S.

DEAR MARK: A judge doesn’t have to grant a partition lawsuitbrought by a property co-owner. But they usually do, even when a majority ofthe co-owners don’t want to sell.

Of course, a judge can grant a continuance for one co-ownerto buy out another co-owner. Anything can happen in a trial court.


DEAR BOB: What are your views on investing in commercialreal estate, compared to residential properties? I just read something aboutthe ease of renting commercial properties where the leases last for many years,instead of a year for apartments and rental houses. Would commercial propertiesbe too complicated for a new investor? –Karen C.

DEAR KAREN: I recommend rental houses because they are soeasy to buy, finance, manage, and profitably resell. Having owned commercialand apartment properties, I find single-family rental-house investing to beeasier and more profitable.

However, a contrary view is contained in the superb new book”Confessions of a Real Estate Entrepreneur” by James A. Randel,available in stock or by special order at local bookstores, public libraries,and

The new Robert Bruss special report, “How to Sell YourHouse or Condo for Top Dollar in a Buyer’s Market,” is now available for$5 from Robert Bruss, 251 Park Road, Burlingame, CA 94010 or by credit card at1-800-736-1736 or instant Internet delivery at Questions for this columnare welcome at either address.

(For more information on Bob Bruss publications, visit his
Real Estate Center

Copyright 2006 Inman News

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