Building a home to sell

4 Replies

I live in Arizona and am considering buying a lot and building a home to immediately sell upon completion in my home town in Kansas. I found dirt cheap lots for sale, and they are located in the county outside of city limits. What this means, is that there is virtually no inspection fees and very low permit/impact fees. I'd literally be looking at about $6,500 total investment for the .25 acre lot and permit/impact fees. That's unheard of...

I need advice of someone more familiar with tax and business laws than me.

I have plans and building expertise, my grandfather would invest the capital for me to do this. I have family in the town I'm building who work construction so I'd be able to pay them as contractors for some of the work on the home and more importantly I'd have people to keep eyes on it for me in between trips back and forth.

My question: is there any way I can avoid capital gains on this investment build? If I start an LLC is it considered business income or a capital gain? To be considered income, to I have to be a registered contractor in Kansas and/or insured (if the contractors that actually perform the work are both of the above)? I know flipping homes as an LLC it's hard to avoid capital gains but does the fact that I'm building it make it any different? I don't really want to do a 1031 transfer because I will want to be able to pay my grandfather back his investment then use the proceeds to start another project without needing an investment support the next time...

You will only owe taxes if you make a profit. If you do not complete the construction efficiently and do not know your market you may not.


If you make money, you will owe taxes. You need to hire a CPA and a Real Estate Attorney.

Regardless of your contractor status or whether or not you form an LLC, you will probably owe income tax and maybe self employment tax on any profits you make. It's unlikely this will be subject to capital gains as your intent is to flip it. A 1031 exchange only applies to property you have kept for investment for a year - this usually means a rental.

The above is generic information and may not apply to you.  Each person's income and tax scenario is different and you should consult with a competent CPA to discuss your individual situation to get advice tailored for you.

You have just stumbled upon one of the best tax loopholes still available. If you live there for two of the last five years, there is no capital gain. You can easily wash, rinse, repeat this tax strategy and never pay tax on your gain or the value if your labor embedded in the value of the house.

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