Drop and Swap 1031 Exchange: A Complete Guide for Investors

investors are talking about partnership interests and drop and swap transactions

Assets in commercial real estate are pricey. As a result, it is unusual for one person to own a number of them. Instead, LLCs or partnerships, in which a group of people get together to combine their money are more common.

A successful sale of an investment property might produce an intriguing scenario in terms of relationships. The fact that the property was sold for a profit makes the partners pleased, but when it comes time to pay taxes on their gain, they might not be so happy. The partnership can use a procedure known as a “1031 Exchange” to reinvest the sales profits into another property while deferring taxes. 

However, what happens when some partners want to reinvest while others don’t?

In this post, we’ll provide an explanation of the “drop and swap” variety of 1031 Exchanges in order to address your query.

We’ll explain what it is, how it operates, what it takes to finish one, and the benefits and drawbacks of doing so. In conclusion, readers will be equipped with the knowledge required to decide whether a drop and switch 1031 Exchange could be a suitable fit for their particular real estate requirements.

A 1031 Exchange

It will be easier to understand a Drop and Swap if we first define what a 1031 Exchange is in practice.

A 1031 Exchange is a tax deferral strategy, named after Section 1031 of the Internal Revenue Code (IRC), which enables investors to postpone capital gains taxes on the successful sale of rental property (the “Relinquished Property”) as long as they reinvest the proceeds in a different property of “like-kind” (the “Replacement Property”).

The IRS mandates that people follow a number of important guidelines in order to fully delay their taxes including:

Purchase Price: The Replacement Property’s purchase price must match or exceed that of the Relinquished Property.

Time: In only 45 days of the purchase of the relinquished property, the exchanger in a 1031 Exchange transaction must define their Replacement Property. Additionally, they have 180 days from the sale date to close on the transaction.

Taxpayer: The taxpayer has to be the same both in the sale and purchase, which is perhaps most crucial for the purposes of this essay. It has to be an identical legal entity, in other words.

With regard to the last point, issues may occur if a partnership sells an asset and a few of the partners wish to reinvest the funds but others do not since the partnership has to remain together in order to buy the Replacement Property. 

What exactly is a 1031 Drop and Swap Exchange?

For those partners who don’t wish to reinvest their sales earnings, a Drop and Swap 1031 Exchange is an option. It entails some legal maneuvering to allow for the breakup of the partnerships and the reinvestment of revenue generated for those partners who want to engage in the exchange.

A Drop and Swap 1031 Exchange: How Does It Operate?

A Drop and Swap 1031 Exchange may be divided into two components, the “drop” and the “swap,” as the name implies.

Prior to the sale of the relinquished property, the partnership is “dropped,” and the interests in the tenants-in-common are dispersed to each individual partner. Following that, these individual owners convey the partnership assets to the person or organization planning to purchase them.

The former partners who want to reinvest the proceeds of their sales “exchange” their partnership shares for a piece of the Replacement Property during the “swap.” The owners can keep their shares and go their own ways if they don’t want to reinvest the money, but they will still owe taxes on the gain.

In a nutshell, a Drop and Swap 1031 Exchange is a method of getting around the rule that the taxpayer must be the same in both sale and purchase transactions. Although it may be appropriate in a variety of situations, it is most frequently employed when a partnership has been used to buy a property (rather than an LLC) and certain members want to reinvest the proceeds after the sale.

investors are looking at a partnership property profits charts

Requirement for a Holding Period for a Drop and Swap

The properties included in the exchange must be held “for productive use in a company, for commerce, or for investment,” which is one of the essential conditions for carrying out a 1031 Exchange. Sadly, the IRS doesn’t really specify a time frame for which an asset must be kept before it may be used for investment purposes.

As a result, there is a chance that the IRS will refuse to approve a Drop and Swap 1031 Exchange into the Replacement Property if the separation of the partnership happens too soon after the sale of the property closes.

It is recommended practice to engage with a Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Qualified Intermediary (QI), and/or tax counsel with particular experience in this sort of transaction to ensure that everyone participating in the Drop and Swap complies with the holding requirements.

Additional Conditions for a Drop and Swap

Real estate investors should take into account the following guidelines in addition to the holding time required when engaging in a Drop and Swap 1031 Exchange:

Election: The IRS must be notified that the ownership structure may no longer be taxed as a partnership by filing an election (761(a)) with them once the partnership has been terminated (dropped) and the conversion to Tenants in Common (TIC) interests is complete.

Running Expenditures: For a specific period of time, each party shall pay its proportionate share of the property’s operating expenses in order to demonstrate to the IRS that it and the other party are no longer partners and are instead tenants in common.

Individual Negotiation: The ex-partners/co-owners should negotiate their selling agreement(s) separately when the time comes to sell the property. By doing this, everyone who is keen on the 1031 Exchange would be able to participate in it according to their ownership stake.

Such requirements are not designed to be all-inclusive because a 1031 Exchange is a sophisticated transaction, and a drop and swap is particularly so. To make sure that their tax return is done appropriately and that all transaction regulations are followed, property investors should always engage with a Qualified Intermediary/CPA.

Benefits of a Drop and Swap

A drop and swap have two major advantages.

The tax deferral comes first. The successful completion of a 1031 Exchange enables investors to postpone capital gains taxes on the successful sale of the asset. Additionally, unless the investor(s) decides they want to pay the taxes, the 1031 Exchange procedure can be repeated endlessly.

Additionally, it gives investors some room to maneuver around the conflicting goals of investing partners.

Drawbacks to Think About

A Drop and Swap has dangers that should be taken into account, just like any property investment plan.

The operational risk that comes with executing the purchase within the parameters of IRS regulations is the most significant. There are several possible pitfalls to avoid, and if one is missed, the transaction might be ruled invalid and subject to taxation. Because of this, it’s crucial to collaborate with a CPA or Qualified Intermediary to ensure everything proceeds as planned.

Second, the 1031 Exchange must be executed within a certain amount of time. In the most competitive industries, they may push investors to “settle” for a property that may not be the greatest match for them because of the pressure they put on them to find a suitable replacement property.

Both of these difficulties have the potential to cause complications, which emphasizes the importance of consulting professionals, making cautious plans, and keeping an eye on the timeline.

investors are discussing the drop and swap transaction on

Why a Drop and Swap Might Be an Option for Investors

It should be obvious why an investor might be intrigued by a drop-and-swap deal from the benefits listed above. For long-term investors, it can be extremely advantageous to have the possibility of delaying taxes forever since it can allow investment money to increase tax-free over time.

Want to know more?

NNN Deal Finder is one of the nation’s premier private equity commercial real estate investing businesses. We deliberately seek top-tier, multi-tenanted properties that are significantly below their inherent value in order to provide better long-term, risk-adjusted profits for our investors while building valuable economic assets for the communities in which we invest.

We provide a crucial service for investors looking for 1031 Exchange Properties. Due to the volume of properties we get from our network of landowners, developers, and brokers, the bulk of our available homes for sale are not shown on our website.

Call us today at 00-240-9094 and let our 1031 Exchange experts help you!

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