Thursday, June 28, 2012

Using Partial Sales to Avoid Foreclosure

The New York Times shows that in recent months a significant percentage of new real estate deals in Manhattan have involved groups taking partial stakes in buildings instead of buying properties by themselves:

Many of today’s transactions are recapitalizations, in which the property owner uses an outside investor’s capital and credibility to persuade the lender or lenders to restructure the property’s debt. In exchange, the new investor typically gains equity, or an owning interest in the property. Often requiring lengthy negotiations among lenders and other stakeholders, the resulting deals usually bring the new investor into the existing ownership structure.

[Another] possible deterrent to conventional sales is transfer tax, which the seller must pay upon selling 50 percent or more of a property. The combined city and state transfer tax in Manhattan is 3.025 percent, one of the highest rates in the nation. The frequency of 49 percent office trades in recent months suggests that sellers are well aware of this tax trigger and are taking steps to avoid that cost through partial-interest transactions.

Steve Clowney

(HT: Chris Odinet)

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