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FIRPTA rules have changed!

This post is overdue.  Back on February 16 of this year, the Foreign Ivestment in Real Property Tax Act (FIRPTA) changed.  Since the Dollar is strong against most currencies at this time, espcially the Canadian dollar, this is important for many foreign property owners.  Much of my business over the past few years has been with fantastic Canadian clients.  When the market was starting to recover and the Canadian dollar was strong, it was an ideal situation for may people looking for a vacation home or investment.  Now that the exchange has flipped around, many of those people are now looking to sell and cash in on both the appreciation and the exchange advantage.

Foreign sellers have had to be concerned with FIRPTA when selling, which dictates that a percentage of funds is to be withheld from the sale to cover any potential income taxes owed.  The withholding applied for any sale over $300K, and there were some exceptions for sales over that amount as well.  The new rules have increased the withholding amount.

The details of the changes are included on the Tax questions page of the Canadian buyer section on this site.

Here are the basics:  If the amount realized is less than $300K and the buyer will be occupying the property, no withholding is required.  If the amount realized is $300,001 to $1M and the buyer will occupy the property, the withholding is 10%.  If the buyer will not occupy, or the amount realized iexceeds $1M, the withholding will be 15%.

If you are selling, you should contact an accounting professional familiar with FIRPTA to determine any potential consequences.  The above info should not be construed as legal or accounting advice.

If you are thinking of selling, I will be happy to assist.  Please feel free to contact me.

Adam Tarr PC
Citywide Real Estate


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