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2013 California Real Estate Tax Law: Homeowners Exclusion Specifics

Buying vs. Renting in Golden State You’ve been a renter your entire life. It’s not that you haven’t had the means. It’s simply been cheaper to rent than buy in the Bay Area. The tides have changed. Recent statistics show that home ownership is now more affordable than renting in all but 2 of 100 […]

California Estate Planning Law: Schematics of Titling Real Property

California Dreamin’ for Couples Yes! I knew there was another reason to get married. Ya, ya, I know, the whole love thing… Just kidding, honey. All joking aside, there’s enormous financial implications to how married couples title real property in California, creating the need to strategize with relation to other estate planning docs under California estate […]

California 2013 Tax Law: Homeowner Exclusion & 1031 Exchange Interplay

Strike While the Iron’s Hot The local real estate market is rising. With limited inventory and a huge influx of buyers and investors, many with all cash offers, it’s now a “seller’s market” in the Bay Area. Cha-Ching! The turn-around has sparked your desire to retire. Your Santa Clara home is worth a million more than when you […]

Income Tax Law: Reporting Sale of Inherited Real Property

Follow the Rules or Else… Income tax law strikes fear in the hearts of Americans. The reason is simple. Income tax law is confusing. And the consequences of misinterpreting income tax law  (whether intentional or not) can be dramatic, ranging from lost fortunes in tax penalties to prison sentences for tax evasion. No one’s immune from […]

California Estate Planning Rules for Co-Habitating Unmarried Couples

New American Dream Planning The traditional sense of the American dream has changed. No longer is a happy marriage, couple kids (1.86 to be exact) and white picket fence on a tree-lined street the ideal american lifestyle. Now, statistics show that more and more people are opting to live together outside the bonds of matrimony. […]

California Estate Planning: Saving for Retirement Saves Inheritance

Passing Nest-Egg to Loved Ones Let’s face it. You’re not getting any younger. And after that health scare from last year, you’ve been thinking more and more about protecting yourself and your loved ones in the future. With retirement looming, you created a comprehensive California estate planning package that includes a will, trust, advance health care directive, and durable power of attorney […]

California Real Estate Law: Avoiding “Sticker Shock”

Weighing Closing Costs of Home Purchase Congratulations! The seller accepted your offer. You’re well on the way to owning your dream home. Hold-off on breaking out the bubbly for now. You’re not the owner just yet. Rather, you’re in “escrow.” What is escrow anyway? In a California real estate law context, it’s the time period […]

2013 Estate Planning Laws: Have A/B Trusts Tumbled Off Fiscal Cliff?

A/B Trusts a Thing of Past for Most Prior to the Fiscal Cliff legislation (passed on New Years Day 2013), an A/B Trust was a common estate planning tool used by married couples to minimize estate taxes. The Fiscal Cliff legislation impacts 2013 estate planning laws by making the federal estate tax exemption transferable (or […]

California Estate Planning: Champagne Wishes & Caviar Dreams

Airing Dirty Laundry Admit it. You’ve dreamt about being a celebrity. The glitz. Glam. Name in lights. Red-carpet affairs… While we may be envious of living the life of Champagne wishes and caviar dreams, many of the rich and famous (and us lay folks too) have learned the hard way that aside from high costs […]

California Real Estate Law Investing Loopholes Guide

Put Uncle Sam to Bed Tick-tock-tick-tock… Time’s running out. You’re not losing sleep this year though. Adios, panic attacks. See ya, blood pressure medication! Determined to beat Uncle Sam, you  hired a real estate law attorney in the off-season to help minimize your tax obligations due April 15th. First cat out of the bag. Review […]