When property values plummeted, private lenders got stuck with worthless mortgages. The IRS restricts individuals and small businesses to taking only $3,000 off their income each year until the debt was gone. A $60,000 mortgage will take 20 years. The only other options have been to try to sell it or just throw it away. However, if that mortgage is more than the property is worth, hasn’t had a payment for over a year, and the bank is threatening to foreclose on the 1st, who will buy the second?
Another option is to donate it. The IRS says the donation value will be based on one of three values. First, if the charity sells or disposes of it within 3 years, the sale value is the donation value of the mortgage. Second, donor can deduct the face value or $10,000 (whichever is less) without an appraisal. For a higher deduction, an appraisal is required based on similar mortgages sold. So long as the charity keeps it, the donor can simply give a copy of the mortgage to the appraiser (no payment history is legally required) and the appraiser must use other similar mortgages that actually sold to determine comparable value. The IRS accepts the appraised value of the mortgage. They key is the deduction limit. It’s increased from $3,000 per year to up to 50% of Adjusted Gross Income. With a $60,000 AGI that mortgage would only take two years to complete. In a 25% tax bracket that’s a choice between $750 versus $7,500 in tax refund the first year. Welcome to your own share of the real estate lender’s bail out!
Charities only accept non-cash donations that they can convert to cash by selling, renting, or collecting. If they can’t convert it to cash, they won’t accept it. Until now. One charity has designed a way to allow individuals to donate their worthless mortgages and get the benefits of donation. CHT has made arrangements with Trejesto Title Transfers to handle all the paperwork. Trejesto is a licensed title company able to do the paperwork in all 50 states. Details can be found at http://www.communityhealthtraining.org/
CHT has been accepting timeshare ownership donations for the last 4 years based on the above IRS regulations. They don’t sell or rent the timeshares like all other charities do. They actually take and hold title for 3 years to give the donor the greatest donation value allowed by the IRS. For more information contact Dr. Ken Rich at drkenrich@IHLPro.com.
# # #
CHT is a small NPO offering free seminars and information services on health care, personal finances, and real estate. It is funded through donations of unusable timeshares and noncollectable mortgages usually considered worthless by their owners.