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OTHER ITA SITES:
A 1031 Exchange Is Win/Win For Everyone
A 1031 tax exchange is a method used by property investors so that they may indefinitely defer tax liability on a property's sale. This is accomplished by transferring the rights to a property that one would like to sell to an intermediary, who then holds on to the sale proceeds and uses them to purchase a replacement in compliance with the rules set out in Section 1031.
Although the current popularity of the 1031 might lead one to believe that it only recently came on the scene, this is untrue. Actually, the history of the 1031 stretches all the way back to 1921, although the original concept was significantly different than what we currently think of as an exchange. The 1031 Exchange truly came into its own in the 1970s, which saw a host of significant changes in the manner that these exchanges were regulated. These modifications paved the way to a more powerful conception of the 1031 process and generated greater interest among real estate investors.
The capital gains tax deferral an exchange grants to the taxpayer might, at first, appear to represent a gift given by the government, however it is, in reality, closer to an interest free loan, because the taxpayer is expected to repay the money gained from the tax deferral by paying capital gains taxes upon the subsequent sale of a replacement property. Additionally, this interest-free loan may be kept by the investor indefinitely; an investor may elect to conduct any number of exchanges before ultimately making the decision to make an outright sale, on which capital gains taxes must be paid.
Section 1031 exists as a mutually beneficial arrangement between the investor and the United States government, providing a benefit for the U.S. economy in addition to the individual taxpayer. By looking upon the transfer of money in an exchange as representing an extension of an existing investment rather than as a separate transaction liable to be taxed, investors are given the opportunity to transfer their money into the most profitable possible investments. This, in turn, helps to elevate the economy by bolstering the growth of new jobs.
Like anything else, the 1031 exchange has skeptics. Some advocates of change in Section 1031 will argue that the tax free profit gained by to the taxpayer in the exchange process represents an unreasonable advantage. Another frequent concern is that the strict deadlines imposed on some aspects of the 1031 process could promote an atmosphere of frantic buying, resulting in an increase in the cost of replacement properties. These criticisms, however, are only tenuously linked to reality, and the odds that Section 1031 will go through significant changes in the foreseeable future are slim. Looking at the big picture, most will concede that the 1031 exchange is greatly beneficial to all parties involved, as it allows taxpayers increased profits on the sale of property while also promoting job growth and consequently promoting the greater good of the U.S.. There is no reason to doubt that the 1031 tax exchange is destined to be a part of the investment world for years to come.
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