Some people are very interested in protecting the environment. Some want to protect their land to make sure it’s not altered from its true nature. Toby Mathis is joined by Tyler Surat, who works in the alternative energy sources industry. Tyler helps farmers and others with the conservation and preservation of their land by creating easements. They discuss the “ins and outs” of conservation easements, which involve tax credits and benefits.
- History of Conservation Easements: U.S. government trades tax for land to incentivize people for conservation via a deduction on donated land based on its asset value
- If you don’t have land to donate or your land isn’t worth anything, find people who do and only want a portion of the tax deduction
- Landowner raises money by having other people buy into a partnership to put a conservation easement on the property and have rights to the land
- Example: Investor/partner gives $100,000 and gets a $400,000 tax deduction
- Landowner has three options: Do nothing, develop land, or conserve it
- Limitations: 60% of adjusted gross income with federal donations and can carry forward unused portion (i.e., a a $200,000 benefit for $100,000 investment)
- Deal with reputable entities; know who you’re dealing with and how they create the lead
- Avoid investing in properties with no developmental value; invest in aggregate types of conservations that hold their value
- IRS is aware of abuse where investors who make most of the income in the United States try to mitigate their tax liability
- Investors get 4.5-5 multipliers, a $5 deduction for every $1 donated; for the IRS to audit that deduction on your personal tax return, it would have to question the entity/easement
- If you want to go green, have a tax appetite, or need an investment strategy, the IRS offers a 30% tax credit for solar or any other renewable energy
Tyler Surat’s Phone Number: 719-580-3051
Full Episode Transcript:
Toby: Hey guys. This is Toby Mathis with the Anderson Business Advisors Podcast. Our mission is to preserve, protect, and prosper. We’re joined today with Tyler. Tyler, I’m going to butcher your last name. How do you say your last name?... Read Full Transcript
Toby: Surat. See? All right I should know that. Anyway, Tyler Surat is a really great guy that worked with a bunch of my clients and that’s how I met him. He works in the field of alternative energy sources. Specifically, we worked with him on conservation easements.
I asked him to join me today so that we can get over the ins and outs of conservation easements and also you’ll learn about him, what he does, and where he’s headed on the alternative energy area. From a tax planner, I like these things because there are tax credits and there’s tax benefits for engaging these transactions. That’s literally how I met Tyler but you can learn all the gamuts.
Some people are just very interested in protecting the environment. Some people are interested in protecting their lands and making sure that if they sell it or give it to future generations, that those generations don’t alter it or change its true nature, and there are restrictions you can put on to it. I’m joined today with Tyler. Welcome, Tyler.
Tyler: Thank you, Toby. I appreciate that.
Toby: Let’s just jump into a little bit of background on you so they understand who they’re listening to and who I’m talking to. How did you get into the world of solar conservation easements, restricting rights, and things like that?
Tyler: First thing conservation easement. I used to work for a small regional CTA firm when I was a child, growing up in the tax industry and stuff like that. One of our main partners was into conservation. We had a large farming base, they had a lot of land, and if you know anything about conservation and you know anything about farmers, they’re poor. I wouldn’t say poor in money but their inheritance really is in their land and really it’s how they get money out of their land, ultimately.
We spend a lot of time in conservation of their lands, in creating easements, and donating of those lands to certain organizations that could benefit from their lands, but also making sure that their lands didn’t change, that they were preserved, like you said, for the future generations.
Toby: That’s interesting. Can you jump in because you mentioned putting easement on your land that restricts it. The topic today really is conservation easements and you just hit the nail on the head. A lot of people have no idea what they are. So at its base, what is a conservation easement?
Tyler: I think it was right around the 70s. It’s historically where the US government kind of quit purchasing land and they decided to trade their greatest asset, which is tax for land or to incentivize people for the conservation. What they offer was a dollar-for-dollar deduction, not a credit, deduction on their land for the donation of that asset value, of the market value or appraised value at the time. What that offers is, if our land was worth something, if it could be developed or it could be mined or there was some sort of value to that land, and they want a green space, that’s what they offered to the donor.
Toby: So, basically I have a big stretch of land. I could develop it and if I develop it, it would be worth a lot more than it is right now. But instead, you give for example, the open area rights to this property to a conservation group, or to a hunting group, or to some 501(c)(3), or something along those lines. Is that fair? Is that what they’re doing?
Tyler: Yeah, pretty much. That’s where we started. A lot of what we were doing was to preserve habitat.
Toby: I know some of those groups are big on habitat conservation.
Tyler: I was even going to mention Ducks Unlimited. That was one of the main ones we worked with. This is in Southern Colorado. It’s where we’re doing most of our work and up what they’re doing. Typically, you can give it to the 501(c)(3) or to a land trust for the conservation of that land because I have to do some big organization where you’re donating it to Duck Unlimited or pretty much you’re just guaranteeing that that land is going to be conserved, basically, and not going to be put on it.
Toby: What do you get for doing that? Let’s say I’m a big land owner. I got a whole bunch of land. I’m worried that as soon as I die, someone’s going to take my land and stick 50 houses on it, develop a bunch of communities on it, and that’s not why I got the land. I don’t want the land to have that happen. I want it to be open and usable by people, should be a natural habitat for wildlife, etc. What am I getting if I put a restriction on that property so it can never be developed?
Tyler: You’re getting, at the time, the appraised value as a tax deduction from the IRS. That would be a Schedule A charitable deduction.
Toby: Perfect. So it’s like giving money to charity except I’m giving the value of that easement and you have somebody value it. Did you guys do all that? Did you have valuations and things like that?
Tyler: We did at first. Historically, what supports your easement is how the entity set-up, what the structure is, basically the legalities and […] of the entity and the biggest part of making sure that this is a bonafide deduction is the value or the placement of that value and that has to come from a qualified appraiser.
Toby: That’s pretty cool. Do you have any stories or anybody or anything you could relate to folks so they can get an idea of how this stuff looks?
Tyler: In short, it really does stem from people that own land, that really do want to conserve it. We have plenty of stories of that way. We do have just an initial landowner, they’re looking to keep their land in the long term. One of our clients had a granite-rich land. He knew that it was granite-rich and basically the value is in the granite, not in development or real estate or anything like that. He could sell it to a mining company, they could come in, and they could get the granite out of it. But that’s really not what he wanted to do with the land. Mainly, what he wanted to do was keep it in the family. Basically hunt, fish, camp quite a bit. So, he decided to donate or conserve that land through conservation easement.
Keep in mind that while you and I are talking and while some of your clients are listening, is the fact that they can be a part of this conservation easement without owning the land. That’s why we’re here. Most of your clients are probably thinking, “Well, I don’t have any land to donate. None of my lands are worth anything.” Well, you find people because that land to that farmer or the landowner was worth a $4 million deduction. Basically, what he wants is a portion of that. He can’t use it because he doesn’t have the income to be able to offset that. What he ends up doing is selling that on the secondary market.
Toby: You just hit the nail on the head. He can’t use all that deduction. In the case that you just presented, it may be somebody that owns a large tract of land. They’re not cash-rich, they’re not making a ton of money, but they’re land-rich and they’re entitled to a huge tax deduction if they say for example, “No mining on my land ever. I give the easement to the mineral rights to a qualified 501(c)(3) or conservation company or a land trust.” That’s different from the land trust that my client is used to dealing with single families and things like that, this is a land in trust for the benefit of society type things. More of a charity.
You’re giving that mineral restriction, the easement to that mineral rights to that charity, for example, and that’s going to devalue to land. They get a deduction to that. Now, the farmer can’t use it all, then they go out and raise money, have other people buy in who can use it, and then they’re going to put the conservation easement on the property. Is that an accurate way of explaining it?
Tyler: Pretty accurate. Typically, the legalities of it is a farmer’s going to offer up his land. They’re going to create some form of partnership or land partnership inside of this land. Everybody that is wanting to be part of this land is going to be invested in that land. What you don’t want to do is present it as a conservation or tax avoidance technique. Obviously, that’s what it is but there is a vote that needs to take place within the partnership. Once the partnership is established, is to the route they want to go with the land.
The three options are: do nothing, of course, we dubbed do nothing with this land. Let’s develop this land in some form; what’s the land’s worth? And the third option would be let’s conserve it, let’s donate it to the government for easement. Typically that last one is why people are involved in a partnership is that strategy. But keep in mind there’s always the other two options the deal can take place when joining the conservation.
Toby: Run me through a typical situation. Let’s say I’m Joe Investor and I’m in a really high tax bracket and I have a lot of income coming in, or I’m in a moderate tax bracket and I just don’t like paying all my taxes, and I also believe in conservation. I’m one of those guys that says, “Hey you know what? I’d rather put my money into something that I know is going to benefit society, rather than give it to the government where I don’t know what they’re doing with it.” Let’s say that I have $100,000. How would that work? Would I invest it in a fund or some sort? What would I be doing?
Tyler: Let’s just take your scenario for example. Let’s say your my client. Typically, some people that I deal with or advice, just like you say, they’re in a tax bracket that they don’t want to be in but basically have no other means for deductions. Let’s take one of mine, for example. He’s a high income earner. He’s 500, 750 plus in a W2H. There’s not a whole lot of freedom deduction-wise for him to take advantage of anything to bring his income to a level or reduce his overall tax liability. This strategy would play out for him.
What you want to do is you want to take that $100,000 that you want to invest or do something with and you join the partnership with than $100,000. In exchange for that $100,000 that the land is selected for conservation, the owner of that land or in order to pass down the value that was given as a deduction, let’s say it’s $4 million or whatever, the landowner’s looking to raise $1 million. That’s what he’s going to take from the land. That’s how he gets his money from the land. He’s going to take that and in exchange, he’s going to pass down a $4 million deduction to whoever donated in private that $1 million. That’s his incentive. He has no other incentives for anybody to invest but that reduction. They’re going to pass that down at a four-to-one ratio. If they were my client, if they were going to pay that tax, they’re now going to get a $400,000 deduction to be able to take a considerable contribution for the $100,000 investment.
Toby: So using your example, some 50 here and then top bracket, you’re taking $100,000 that would have been taxed federally at 37%. You can’t do much about the social security tax on that but we can offset state income taxes. Let’s say you’re in California. You have 37% plus you have 13% in some change, and you really have a 50% tax bracket. You give $100,000, you’re going to get a $400,000 tax deduction?
Toby: All right. So then you can take that $400,000 and get to figure out what it’s worth to you. Now you do have limitations. You have 60% of adjust your gross income whenever you’re doing federal donations. There’s going to be some restriction there. I think you can carry forward the unused portion, but in essence, you’re getting about a $200,000 benefit for $100,000 investment. Is that a fair way to look at it?
Tyler: That’s a fair look, yup.
Toby: There’s some pretty bad actors out there in this space who’d use that and they try to abuse it. Are you aware of any of those guys?
Tyler: I would say, if you’re looking into this type of strategy, what you want to make sure of, like I mentioned before, is definitely reputation. If this is something that’s just been created by two individuals looking to get money for some land, they’re pulling a Zillow estimate for the land of what the legal value is, obviously that’s a stretch in it. That’s one thing. You really want to make sure of who you’re dealing with and how they create the lead. These things take time. It’s not something that you just pull up January first of the tax year or even later on of the quarter and be like, “You know what? I need to donate my land.” It can be done. Don’t get me wrong. It can be done and has been done that way but really, reputation is what perceives it. You want to make sure the law firm that you use to set up the entities, like who are they? Is it the landowner’s cousin? Who knows what law school he went to. Obviously, the appraiser, like I said, what’s their background?
Toby: All of these, because they’re so big, my rule of thumb is it’s probably going to get audited just to check to make sure that they have a valid appraisal, but I think it really comes down to the appraisal. What’s the value? Are you familiar with Donald Trump’s conservation easement? Some are Mar-a-Lago and some his golf courses?
Tyler: Yeah, I am.
Toby: Do you remember the situation? Mar-a-Lago, do you remember the facts on that one?
Tyler: I only really know the summary on that but it’s use of that as a case of really was that conservation?
Toby: Say it’s open area easement. It’s like, “Okay, I’m never going to develop this thing,” right?
Tyler: Right. I think you’re going to read about it in a Forbes article. Really there’s no developmental value inside of there. Obviously, it has a golf course and stuff like that, but that’s not the type of stuff you want to deal with. Mostly what we deal in or what I advice my clients to invest in are aggregate-type of conservations because that holds their value. You can obviously value granite, you can value whatever can be mined at the time that it was donated. You can probably google the value of granite right now and realize that it’s worth $225 a ton and if they determine so many tons are on that land, then you obviously have a verifiable value.
Toby: You get core samples and all of that where you’re going in, you can test how many tons are in there and then you just say most like that, at the fair market value of the granite.
Tyler: That’s all part of the appraisal. You do really want to make sure. We used to do aerial overviews of the land for investors, with the drones that’s becoming pretty popular right now, what does this land look like, because for a certain period of time, as an investor in that land and as an investor in the conservation, you have rights to that land. You want to know what it looks like. Whether you’re a $50,000 investor or a $2 million investor, you have some rights to that land and that’s what’s given to you for the donation of that. It would be nice to have rights to the Mar-a-Lago resort.
Toby: He said, “They’re all numbered. Take all the antiques out of the clubhouse,” and they can billion dollar deduction you got for doing pretty much nothing.
Tyler: Yeah. I think in that year he had 60 LCE investments. It really is a strategy.
Toby: In all seriousness, this is a guy that’s worth billions, who goes out, and manages to not pay much in taxes. [By the way, this month’s release his tax return …], at least we haven’t seen him. But he’s probably saying, “Hey, I can pretty much not pay tax because I have all this property. I can just put conservation easements and give away a lot of these things, to keep my lands that I own, used the way that I want them to be used, maybe he doesn’t want them to be dug up, or mined, or developed, and things like that, and he gets it to benefit today for that.
In a true conservation mindset, it’s a really good thing. You’re taking your land and you’re actually putting restrictions on it so it’s not going to be used for those purposes. Maybe you don’t want it to use for those purposes and it’s a benefit for society so you’re just getting a tax benefit. For an investor, they’re just getting the tax benefit because they’re participating. They’re going to the farmer, they’re going to the landowner, and they’re saying, “Hey, I’ll help you out with this. I just want the tax benefits, but I’ll give you my money so that it’s not for nothing for you too.” In essence, that was kind of working.
Tyler: Yeah. You’re right. It’s a fair assumption. A typical investor probably never sees the land that they’ve invested in, but it is when we talk like 1% of the United States who has a good bulk of the tax liability, they have a good portion of the income, they have a good portion of the 1% as they pay their tax. This is how they mitigate their tax. This is how it is. They’re going to purchase it, they may raise some cattle on it or anything like that, but as far as some elaborate scheme, those are kind of the things you want to be aware of, that’s why the IRS is aware of these. There is abuse.
Another thing you probably want to be aware of is what’s the multiplier if you’re an investor. You get above 4½ maybe 5 multipliers to where you’re getting $5 of a deduction for every $1 you donate. It’s pretty risky.
Toby: The average last year was nine-to-one. You gave $10,000, you got a $200,000 deduction. That’s probably not going to fly.
Tyler: No and I think that’s why they came out and said that they were going to start to look at these a little bit more carefully. Let’s bring up that topic really quick, the audit topic. People tend to not think that the deductions are real. They’re scared that they may be audited because they claimed those types of deductions. We can put that here to rest. In surety that if you take that deduction and you’re invested in that deduction, you’re invested in that partnership. In order for the IRS to question that deduction on your personal tax return, they obviously have to question the entity of itself. The entity is bigger than you and that’s why I say part of who you invest with, lawyer-wise, land management-wise, and appraiser-wise, those certain values are going to hold true later on if in defense of that easement. And they’re prepared for these types of defenses.
That’s why you want to make sure that their team is a reputable team because they will be prepared for that defense. It’s going to calm, but who the IRS can use as an appraiser probably somebody in the industry that’s similar to the person that you’re easement used. That’s where you want to be.
Toby: Yeah. That’s value fairly yours, value fairly begin. We estimated your conservation is way more than what you took. You left some money on the table. Of course, they never do that. Do you ever see that happen?
Tyler: Were they leave money on the table?
Toby: You’re too conservative.
Tyler: Actually, we had one that was fully funded at one time in a conservative manner and it did go eight-to-one by the time the real value came across. It was a little late for anybody else to invest, to bring down, so that deduction was passed on to the partners that donated the $4 million range, four-to-one range, they get a letter and they’re like, “Hey, good news. Here’s an eight-to-one.” That one did go through and audit. I think the value did hold true there.
Toby: Just for ease of mind, it’s not the individual who’s getting audited. It’s actually the easement that’s getting audited.
Tyler: Yeah and that’s what I was saying. For you on a personal level, your surety is in that easement and the easement is going to be in defense of that. Let’s take my client, for example. He’s a W2 guy. W2 and the land easement is really already had on a tax return. W2 obviously is defensible to him in a personal audit. If they were to question the easement portion, then they have to go a little bit higher than him. It’s just is what it is. People are on your side and like I said, the IRS are going to use reputable people. If you use the same reputable people, then there’s no question.
Toby: Now Tyler, you worked with a few of my guys, a few of my clients. If somebody was looking for an easement, you’re not the one who owns the land. You’re not trying to raise money for your lands. You just work with people that are raising money for their lands to put conservation on it, correct?
Tyler: Yeah. I would say they’re in my network. It’s pretty much not ethical for me to be a broker as such. Obviously, there’s the promotion factor.
Toby: You’re not the guy that’s trying to raise all venture money for himself.
Toby: This is what you do and I’ll get into some of the other stuff you do here in a second, but if somebody was trying to place some money, you can help point them in the right direction with the right fund that could potentially work. How many funds were you working with last year, for example?
Tyler: I worked with three.
Toby: […] there with everybody and their mother. These are actual projects where you’re trying to put exactly what you just stated it was as you’re just looking at projects and you’re trying to put the easements on. If somebody wants to participate, that’s great. If they don’t, they don’t. There’s a lot that’s out there. If they want to work with you, how would they get a hold of you?
Tyler: You can reach out to me personally. Similar to Toby, just on a smaller scale with advisement to small business clients and individuals. You can reach out to my first name which is Tyler, T and my last name Surat, so [email protected]
Toby: Okay. So it’s One Tree Advisors. Do you have a phone number?
Tyler: I do. It’s 719-580-3051.
Toby: Okay. We’ll probably post your information along with this.
Tyler: That will work.
Toby: Make it easy. Some people listen to this. Some people don’t want and some people just listen to them when they’re jogging or doing whatever else so they don’t have a pen.
Tyler: And really, that’s my involvement. Like I said, I used to work for a CTA firm. I never did really get my CTA license. I left before that because my niche or my passion was then the advisement and everyday advisement with a client. I want to be involved with the business. I want the strategies that they’re going to take. I don’t want to know about it third quarter. I want to know about it second quarter, or even at the first of the year. That’s the person I take.
Toby: What you doing now besides the conservation? What else do you do for energy conservation? You sound like that’s your niche. Is that a fair statement?
Tyler: Yeah, it is.
Toby: What else do you do?
Tyler: We’re involved in some solar projects right now. I do own a portion of a solar installation company in the Colorado area. We sell locally residential solar. We do commercial solar. Choose a business I caught on to my advisement with the client.
Toby: Why do people do solar besides trying to get themselves off the grid? Why would an investor do solar? Why would somebody who owns rental properties do solar, things like that?
Tyler: I’ll say just like any individual, anybody with a tax appetite, if you’re looking to go green like some people, like you said, it’s similar to conservation. You’re either looking to go green, or you have a tax appetite, or you’re just looking for some sort of an investment strategy, a place to put your money, not to avoid tax but as a strategy to either delay or make your money go further than just paying tax. Right now obviously, on the individual level and also on all other levels, solar and any type of other renewable energy qualifies for the 30% tax credit from the IRS. Any type of investment.
Toby: You get a big tax credit for going green. You get 30% tax credit on the project. What else?
Tyler: Let’s just say that’s on the individual level. Really, that’s the farthest you can go on the individual level is you put solar on your house. There’s 30% right off the top of your investment. Obviously you’re going to pay off a certain amount of time that you finance or you could pay cash up-front. Instead of paying tax, invest on that project. On a small business level, there’s so many more possibilities. Obviously, you get the 30% tax credit, but you also get the advantage of appreciation, and that type of write-off which makes the payback a lot sooner.
Toby: I can see […] on that one. You get the the tax credit in. You’re appreciating the equipment that you’re putting up there as well.
Tyler: Right. If you don’t have any place to put solar, the next step is to look to lease solar. Find a place to put solar. A great place to put solar is on a church. Everybody may or may not have a religion but there’s always a church on every corner and sometimes they need help in the financing aspect. Lease it to them. Purchase it yourself. Lease it to them. You obviously get the 30% tax credit, they’re going to pay your money back, and you’re going to get the depreciation as well in spite of that. That’s another option.
Toby: Are you selling the energy then to the church? “You’re like, “Hey, I’ll put a solar array up on your roof and I’m going to give you a great deal on the electricity that it generates.” Is that what you’re doing?
Tyler: Typically, what they’re looking to do is mitigate their cost. Any type of charitable organization wants a straight line budget amount. If you have a lease payment from them, you would charge them appropriately for whatever the insurance rates are but they’re locked in at that lease payment. The beauty of this is, is in the next two years power costs are going to rise. On average nationally, power rises about 4%. You have a 4% increase in power every year. What you’re saving is the 4% every year and then the 20-year period of a 12-year period that you’re paying back the solar is the 501(c)(3) company, you’re avoiding that 4% increase over that 12 years because you’re locked into the lease payment with an individual that’s invested in solar.
Toby: So you’re not even selling the energy. You’re just saying, “Hey, I put this thing on your roof, it’s worth $50,000,” and you’re leasing it to them at a dollar amount. Toward the end of the lease term, do they own the equipment or do you own it?
Tyler: They then own the equipment. Over the years, you recoup your cost but also you see the 30% tax credit as an investor in that. It is small scale. I brought that example up but keep in mind, just like there are with conservation easements, there are funds that invest in these types of projects. Being a partner inside of these funds, all of that trickle back down to you as an investor. The 30% tax credit, the depreciation amount, all of that trickle back down to you on a K1 level.
Toby: And we’re glossing over that is a tax credit. It means it’s actually like a dollar-for-dollar offset to your taxes. It’s not a deduction. It’s a tax credit. You get a $10,000 tax credit and your tax bill’s $20,000, you’re only paying $10,000. You just be just like somebody just reached in and pay. That’s pretty potent. I like the fact that you’re doing that. That seems like it’s going to do some help and get us more and more people that aren’t reliant on the existing infrastructure for electricity and for energy, etc.
Living in Las Vegas, we’re very conscious of water and energy. We have Hoover dam right around us but the water especially and all these things, we’re always looking at ways to alternative sources. Knowing of all these huge solar plants they’re trying to build just because they have so many issues. We have such a high demand. It’s kind of take to go back at micro level.
Tyler: Essentially what you’re doing is you’re not looking to get off the grid because the power is always supplied by the power company. What are you doing is putting a system somewhere that the power company then offsetting your bill with the energy that they’re purchasing from you. You’re providing the power company something. My company, in fact, just put a system on a church. The church took advantage of it themselves. They paid for it with their own contribution money and stuff like that. Very sizable system, it’s a $175,000 system. We just finished it right in the middle of December and the one person that called them right at the end of December, wanting to purchase their system from them and lease it back to them so that they could take advantage of the 30% tax credit, you want to know who that person was?
Tyler: The power company.
Toby: You know they don’t care about the tax credit. They just know that the energy’s cheap, right?
Tyler: Well, they’re just energy but they did care about the tax credit. The for-profit power company […]
Toby: Oh, it’s for profit.
Tyler: Yeah. They need the deduction and that area they wanted to purchase it back.
Toby: I understand bonus depreciation. They’ll get a tax credit.
Tyler: Yeah. They wanted the depreciation, they wanted the tax credit, they wanted everything about that, and they were looking right at the end of the year. They’re pretty profitable power company.
Toby: Did they do it?
Tyler: I think they’re still negotiating that fact with them. Transactionally, I think they probably will end up doing it if it makes sense to the church but 501(c)(3), they just can’t use that tax credit. We do have partners that do this all over. If you’re into helping the environment, you’re into helping charitable organizations, you’re into those types of things, this is a way to do it. It really is. There’s so many more benefits than a dollar-for-dollar deduction in a tiding flip on the backside of your church. You get the same type of benefit almost.
Toby: That’s pretty cool. I like what you’re doing. Thow out there again just the phone number for these guys and if they want to get a hold of Tyler. Tyler seems like a pretty good dude and knows his stuff. What’s the phone number again?
Toby: All right. Hey, Tyler, thank you very much for joining us. This has been very informative. I do these things all the time and it just really needs to to talk to somebody who has a pretty good heart and is pretty ingenious. I love this stuff. I’m a tax guy.
Tyler: In 2019 if you want to revisit it as well, not to continue your podcast here, but opportunity zones are going to be a place for investments and more solar projects are going to go. If you clients are looking to hide those or not or delay those capital gains, we are going to have some solar projects that are available in those opportunity zones where they can take those capital gains, roll them over to these projects, and take advantage of the same type of scenarios that we’ve been talking about.
Toby: You and I will definitely talk about that. I like qualified opportunity zones under the 1400Z, the new chapter in the tax code, but there’s some really good benefits and obviously the flow of income that you never pay tax on the project itself when it grows. We will definitely talk about that because that’s something that I like. I haven’t really thought about marrying the solar with that because that’s a double, triple dip. That could be pretty potent from a tax […] standpoint while benefiting society.
Tyler: Yeah and it’s a business you really don’t have to pay attention to. Once the solar is in, there’s not a whole lot of maintenance that goes into it. It’s not like you’re investing in real estate and worry about real estate taking a dump. Solar is what it is. It’s the same thing with aggregates.
Toby: That is weird. Not to get off-topic and then we’ll wrap up. The first panels that they made I think are still in existence. The first panels I got up there, these things don’t wear out.
Tyler: No and right now, most of our panel providers, to just throw a shout out to them, they’re offering 25-year manufacturer warranties and 25-year production warranties. They’re supposed to produce 90% of their efficiency for 25 years. So if you get into 30 year period, it could be 80%, 75%. It’s a good deal.
Toby: When I buy real estate I want 25 year warranty on the house.
Tyler: Good luck with that.
Toby: Maybe, fix the appliances. It’s been 20 years. I wish. Thanks again, Tyler. I really appreciate it. I’m going to get you back. I’m going to keep you, hold your word on that one. We’ll do qualified opportunities married with solar. That will be very interesting. Thanks again, bud.
Tyler: All right. Thanks again, Toby. Will talk to you later.
Toby Mathis, is a founding partner of Anderson Law Group and current manager of Anderson’s Las Vegas office. He has helped Anderson grow its practice from one of business and estate planning to a thriving tax practice and national registered agent service with more than 18,000 clients. In his work as an attorney, he has focused exclusively in areas of small business, taxation, and trusts. In addition, Toby was the past director and host of the longest-running local business radio program on KNUU in Las Vegas “The BOSS Business Brief”. He sits on the board of directors for several companies and was recently appointed to the local board of Entrepreneurs’ Organization, a worldwide association of owners of successful businesses. He has authored more than 100 articles on small business topics and has written several books on good business practices, including first and second editions of Tax-Wise Business Ownership and 12 Steps to Running a Successful Business.