Las Vegas Real Estate News

The Trump Tax Bill and Your Real Estate Investments

While the Trump tax bill, or as it's officially known, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), has been panned by many observers, it does contain some significant tax breaks for real estate investment. This comes as no surprise, given that the President is a huge investor in real estate around the world.

Before going too far, it's important that you plan on consulting with a tax professional for these tax cuts. This bill can be confusing and not something that the average person can understand. It's even complicated for professionals in the industry.

Bonus Depreciation for Real Estate Investors

You can get a 100% first-year bonus depreciation deduction. This will be retroactive to your 2017 filings. This tax break will last until 2022.

Lower Corporate Taxes

Lower corporate taxes can affect many of us who have incorporated our investment properties. Those earnings will now be taxed at a lower level. Pass through income through an LLC will get a 20% deduction on qualified income. This will make it easier for real estate firms to expand and for startups to become profitable.

The Trump Tax Bill and Your Real Estate Investments

1031 Exchanges

1031 exchanges allow real estate investors to trade up and diversify their portfolios without an immediate tax hit. These deferments are protected by the tax law overhaul. Putting all of this together will allow for double-digit tax savings.

Retirement Account Savings

This savings will allow people to save a lot of money on their taxes through contributions to their retirement accounts. Education Savings Accounts (ESAs) and Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) as well as 401ks and IRAs will all see significant savings under this bill.

Forbes advises: "Many rules have changed with the passing of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Some important ones didn't change. Some individuals need to urgently act to avoid a harsh tax hit this year and looking forward. This is especially true for those with new limitations on state and local income taxes and in high property tax states, though others may benefit under the new rules."

King Realty Group does not provide tax, legal or accounting advice. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal or accounting advice. You should consult your own tax, legal and accounting advisors before engaging in any transaction.

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Top Tips To Take Control Of Your Finances

Here are 9 steps you can take to get your finances straightened out in 2019:

  • Budget your biggest expenses for each month - Start every month with a plan to cover the things you need to, like your mortgage, electric, etc. That way, the biggest and most stressful items are out of the ways.
  • Start 2019 with a review of expenses - One of the best ways to get your finances in order to go through them and know what you're paying for. Sometimes things like web hosting, TV packages, domain purchases, and high interest credit card debt can all eat away at your money. This is especially true when you haven't looked at what you're spending money on now.
  • Plan on saving money for annual expenses - As a homeowner, one of the biggest, scariest expenses is property taxes. Start putting away all the money you need as fast as you can. Nothing will feel as good as having the taxes stashed away by June and having extra money for the rest of the year.
  • Look at ways to save - Consider a smaller vehicle, ride sharing, or public transportation to save money on getting to work. Change your light bulbs to energy saving models. Add some insulation to your ceiling or your walls to save on heat. It's important to save where you can.

Top Tips To Take Control Of Your Finances

  • Every little bit helps - You might think that saving $5 a month is nothing, but at the end of the year, that's $60. Every dollar helps and can help establish good saving habits.
  • Plan on saving some money - Just as not spending a dollar helps, putting a dollar in savings is important too. It can make everything much easier if you fall on hard times and you need some extra cash for a home repair or to fix the car.
  • Have the house inspected - Start every year knowing that things are working well in the home. The furnace, the roof, the electrical, and even pest inspections should be done every year. This will decrease the likelihood that you have a break down that will destroy your savings and credit cards.
  • Consider insurances everywhere - You can get insurance on car repairs, your pets and more. If it seems costs effective, you get these insurances. That way, if the worst case happens, you have a back up.
  • Monitor your credit - Credit monitoring is free through a number of different companies. Having a great credit rating can make everything else less expensive.

Getting your finances in order early in the year can make the rest of the year less expensive and flow more smoothly.

King Realty Group does not provide tax, legal or accounting advice. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal or accounting advice. You should consult your own tax, legal and accounting advisors before engaging in any transaction.

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Trends In Kitchen Remodels

Kitchen remodeling is one of the most important and effective ways to update a home and increase the resale value. Every year, new trends in kitchen design are seen, but the trends that appear to be dominant in 2019 are timeless and will add value to homes for generations.

Trends In Kitchen Remodels

  • Quartz and white countertops - Engineered countertops made from quartz and composite materials are overtaking granite. They are less expensive and more variety for the consumer.
  • Mixed finishes - Mixing metal finishes has become increasingly popular. Nickel and oil-rubbed bronze fittings are commonly mixed in kitchens.
  • Engineered flooring - Natural hardwoods have become less common as engineered floors are becoming the floors of preference. They tend to require less upkeep and allow some consumers to avoid the use of rare or exotic woods.
  • High-tech - Everything from high-tech faucets to talking refrigerators are becoming common in kitchen upgrades. These items are even being integrated with the home system so the whole house can be controlled from a single location.
  • Appliance finishes - Stainless steel is still very popular, but black stainless is quickly becoming a preferred finish. Its dramatic look, with the durability of stainless steel makes it an excellent choice.
  • Gray cabinets - Strange as it seems, 11 percent all kitchen upgrades include a change to gray cabinets. While the classic white cabinets are still the most popular, gray is catching up. These are matched with satin or brushed nickel door hardware.

Today's upgrades are classic and dramatic. These styles will be the preferred look for a generation or more.

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Henderson, Nevada - The Quiet Mover and Shaker

Henderson, Nevada, is often overshadowed by its shiny neighbor, Las Vegas. Where Vegas has all the flashy casinos and headline entertainment, Henderson has building a massive economy that rivals many much larger cities.

With a population of 302,000, Henderson is a medium-sized city, but 2018, under the guidance of Mayor Debra March, has seen two major developments, the arrival of the Raiders headquarters and the construction of a Google data center.

The Raiders headquarters will bring hundreds of jobs ranging from executives to support staff. The project is expected to deliver over $14 million in property taxes in the next 3 decades.

Google only has 14 data centers around the world, including Henderson. They are rare and expensive; Google will be investing $600 million in the data center here in Henderson. This project is worth $94 million in tax revenues in the next 30 years and will create over 200 jobs.

data center

What does all this change mean for Henderson?

The most important thing that this type of growth means to a city the size of Henderson is a stable local tax base. Those taxes pay for schools, roads, and infrastructure for decades to come.

For homeowners, it also means that homes will retain their value for decades to come. A large and stable employment base is at the heart of home values. The presence of Google and the Raiders will make Henderson a desirable place to own a home (and sell one) for a generation or more.

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800 New Homes Where The Great Mall was to Go

The Great Mall of Las Vegas was to be a gem in this city of amazing buildings. There was to be an ice rink and much more.

Today, the land is as it was; the mall project was scrapped for many different reasons.

Recently, builders filed plans to build over 800 new homes on that land.

800 New Homes Where The Great Mall was to Go

"The project plans were from builder KB Home, city records show. The Calida Group, a Las Vegas apartment developer whose name and logo appear on some planning documents, confirmed that it will build a rental complex there," said the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

This is yet another sign that the Las Vegas housing market has made a healthy rebound from the 2008 housing crisis that seemed to leave entire neighborhoods empty.

While the homes won't all be built at once, the steady increase in housing inventory is likely to help keep Las Vegas housing prices relatively stable, also avoiding the extreme prices that preceded the housing collapse.

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Tax Deductions And Your Home

This a quick list of tax deductions on your home that you should look at before filing your taxes in 2019:

  • Depreciation - This is the perceived decrease in the value of real estate.
  • Mortgage interest deductions - The interest on your mortgage can be deducted.
  • Cost of repairs and maintenance - The expenses for keeping up your home can be deducted from your taxes.
  • Cost of services - Property managers and legal expenses can all be deducted.
  • Utilities - In many cases, your utilities can be taken off of your taxes.
  • Travel costs - If you have to travel in relation to your property, you can deduct those.
  • Property taxes - Naturally, the taxes that you pay to the state or local governments can be deducted as long as they’re related to your property.

Check with your accountant or your tax software, but you should find that all of these deductions can make huge difference on your taxes.

Tax Deductions And Your Home

King Realty Group does not provide tax, legal, or accounting advice. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal, or accounting advice. You should consult your own tax, legal, and accounting advisors before engaging in any transaction.

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The NEXT Government Shutdown - How to keep your home

After 35 days, federal government workers are finally back at work and are expecting to get their back pay.

For many, it was a terrifying experience. Most government workers, particularly the ones that were affected by the shutdown, don't make a lot of money. Most live paycheck to paycheck. To make matters worse, few, if any leaders in Washington, seemed to understand the effect of the shutdown on real lives. From the Coast Guard and TSA to the IRS and the Justice Department, real people found themselves trying to figure out how to pay their rent or their mortgage.

It was stressful and depressing and the temporary fix will only last until February 15. But there were some bright spots. Some of the nation's biggest lenders put together programs to help government workers.

closed sign

Here is a short guide to surviving the next government shutdown and sadly there will be one at some point.

  • Talk to your creditors now - Call your mortgage company, landlord, and even credit card companies. Let them know that you work for the federal government and that you're on the list of "non-essential" personnel. If there is another shutdown, you will be furloughed and not getting paid or will be working, but won't even be eligible for unemployment. Ask them to put a note in your records so that if you have a problem later, they are already aware of it.
  • Pay rent/mortgage in two payments - Your mortgage company won't care and it will save you money in the end. Speak to your landlord about paying your rent in two payments each month. This way, if the paychecks stop, you have a 50% chance of having half of the month's housing paid for.
  • Pay down one credit card - Pay down one credit that has a decent credit limit. Then lock it away. Let that card be your emergency card. Take it out and use it once a quarter so that the credit card company doesn't close it. The rest of the time, you don't have that card. It will be there to get you by for a few weeks.
  • A second job on standby - Try starting a side hustle, like Uber or online freelancing, now. If the government shuts down, you can increase your hours. If you start now, you'll be in a position to just increase your income when there's a problem. If you wait until there's a shutdown, it will take too long to get something started. Uber, for example, requires vehicle inspections and background checks. These things take time. Get it done now.
  • Talk to your creditors as soon as it happens - This last shutdown was a mess. If there's another shutdown, call your creditors on day 1 and call them every week after that. Ask them how they can help. Let them know that you're good for the money. Nothing makes creditors more nervous than not hearing from the people who are supposed to be paying them. Talk to them and be honest. Most will do what they can.

There will be another shutdown. That much we can count on. There are things that you can do now to make money when that happens.

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Your Annual DIY Home Inspection

Making sure that small problems don’t become huge ones is the best way to keep your home affordable.

Homeowners should inspect their home every year. Going through a list like this one, you can save yourself a lot of hassle and pain later.

Your Annual DIY Home Inspection

Electrical
• Look for trees touching power lines
• Look around for loose outlet covers around the house
• Check the breaker box for scorches, etc.
• Check that all outlets work; use an electrical tester or a lamp
• Verify that your GFCI outlets are working by resetting them

Plumbing
• Look around for new leaks, especially in crawl spaces
• Check the house for corrosion, like green stains
• Check your water pressure by removing faucets aerators
• Look at all of the toilets to make sure they flush completely
• Check the burner on the water heater to look for rust or blockage
• Look at your drain speeds; watch for slow drains and fix them before they block up completely
• Drain your water heater; just a couple of pints out of the bottom will help
• Check caulking around the tub and showers
• Make sure that toilets are seated well and not moving around
• Look for cracks in tiles, the toilet tank and bowl, and sinks
• Check that handles on faucets are solid and not leaking
• Check bathroom vent fans for obstruction and dust

Exterior
• Look for cracks in asphalt
• Check retaining walls for bulges and leaks
• Check porches and decks for rotting, sagging, or broken boards
• Go over fences to look for gaps and loose posts
• Check your chimney for leaning
• Check gutters and downspouts for clogs and cracks
• Look at window sills for rotting and insects
• Check for peeling paint; it can open your house to rotting
• Check the foundation for cracks and evidence of animals
• Look for moss or debris on the roof
• Check your roofing; if there are missing shingles or holes, fix them

Water
• Send your well water out to be tested for contaminants
• Check that your well is covered and safe
• Test your sump pump by pouring water on it
• See if your septic system has a lot of vegetation or trees growing on it

Heating
• Change your furnace filter
• Go over your duct work looking for leaks
• Look around radiators for drips and leaks
• Check your vents and registers for clogs and dust

Windows and Doors
• Check windows and doors for leaks and gaps; check seals
• Look for cracks in glass, especially basement windows and skylights
• Look for peeling paint and rotting

Attic/Crawl Spaces
• Look for rodents or insects that have moved in
• Check for leaks
• Verify that vents are working and that they are well-screened off

Other places, like the kitchen and the garage, are simply a matter of making sure that there are no leaks, no invaders, and that all doors and windows work and are secure.

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Why Your Home Isn't Selling

If your home isn't selling quickly, you might be frustrated and looking for answers. You might have some issues particular to your house, like a toxic waste dump in the backyard, but the likelihood is that it's one of these reasons.

Your asking too much - You might think your house is the Taj Mahal, but in reality, it's just a house to everyone else. It's not a matter of how much it's worth to you; it's about how much it's worth to other people.

You have a bad listing - If the listing for your house is badly written, doesn't tell the whole story, or is simply confusing, it won't attract buyers and you're stuck there.

You hang around during showings - Seriously, go away. People feel like their putting you out of your house, especially if you speak of it fondly. Leave, if you want to sell.

Your home isn't cleaned - Hire someone to deep clean your house. It will help. What you think is clean is likely not enough for others.

You're really attached to the price - If you aren't willing to negotiate, you're going to lose. People want to feel they got a bargain on the biggest purchase of their lives.

Why Your Home Is Not Selling

You left your stuff up - Pictures of your children, personal mementos, all of these things tell the people visiting the house that you're not really leaving.

Your agent is bad - An agent who stops by once to sign a contract and never comes back is not the right person. If you aren't seeing at least some traffic, get a new agent.

Your house is rundown - If the roof is gone and the foundation is crumbling, you might be there a while.

Your house is cluttered - If your home looks like a hoarder's place, you'll never be able to sell. People are nervous about a lot of stuff simply because all that stuff might be hiding serious flaws.

You made it yours - If you put an observatory for your telescope in the bedroom, you'll have a hard time selling the house. Some improvements are too personal to sell to others.

You didn't look outside - If the lawn is a mess, the trees need to be trimmed, and there's a lot of broken playground equipment all over, people won't want to stop by.

Make sure that you've prepared your house and your mind for selling. If you haven't, people can tell and won't buy your house.

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Why PMI Can Be A Good Thing

"Oh, great. One more thing to add to the monthly payment."

Private mortgage insurance or PMI is an insurance policy that a borrower pays. The beneficiary is the lender.

That might seem like a crazy arrangement, but the purpose of PMI is make sure that the lender gets paid.

Here's how it works: You look at a house. In order to get a lender to loan you money, you need to give them a 20% down payment. On a $500,000 house, that's $100,000!

With PMI, your down payment can be as little as 3.5% - $17,500!

The idea is simple really, if you default on the mortgage, the lender will go to the insurance company and get paid by them.

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The cost of your PMI is based on:

  • The value of the house
  • The amount of your down payment
  • Your credit score

Your PMI is tacked onto your mortgage payment every month. It might be as high as $200 a month on a $500,000 house, but you're able to get into the house and start building equity.

Most people can't afford a 20% down payment. Even on a $100,000 house, that's $20,000, a large amount of money to try to save up.

With PMI, you can get a down payment as low as 3% and move in right away.

Private mortgage insurance (PMI) is a simple way to get into a home without needing to save up money for years and years.

Ask a mortgage broker about using PMI to lower your down payment.

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