$10m landlord had planned to fund capital gains tax hit

Auckland landlord Gary Lin, with 14 residential properties worth about $10 million, had planned to hold places longer and use expected valuation rises to offset capital gains tax.

“I’ve already got a strategy because we can’t control what the Government does,” said Lin of what he expects to be a punitive regime for landlords and who originally bought to play World of Warcraft on his computer all day.

He spoke in advance of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern rejecting CGT. Lin had pondered a grim scenario of CGT coming in.

“On average, Auckland house prices double every seven to nine years,” said the professional property coach and investor.

“If the Government taxes me 33 per cent on [investment property] valuation increases when I sell, then I will wait an extra three years because then the tax will be cancelled out by further gains,” predicted Lin who has now sworn off games for real estate.

But he is unlikely to ever incur the tax because not only will it not now be implemented, but he is a long-term holder who rarely sells.

Yet the spectre of the tax did not make him happy.

“If my $10m portfolio is worth $20m in the future, I will be paying $3.3m in taxes,” he said of a scenario where he quit all the properties.

“But I’m not that likely to sell because I’m after passive income,” he said, referring to his appetite for getting wealthy via cash flow, not realised capital gains.

“I want to pass my properties on to my daughters and my grandkids,” he said referring to his children aged 6 and 5.

Lin does quit properties occasionally and told how in 2014 he had sold the family home, making $200,000 after buying it in 2009.

If that was an investment property owned post-CGT and sold some time after a valuation date, he could be liable to pay more than $60,000 tax, he said.

“But then I’d see that tax as a cost, therefore it reduces my profit. Either I take it on the chin or I delay selling by say a couple of years,” Lin said, explaining how his CGT strategy would pan out under the plan.

“If I do sell in the future, I’d have had to pay the cost if CGT had come in,” said Lin who runs Gary Lin Property Coaching.

“Most people in life are busy working in their jobs, working in their business, keeping busy, but going nowhere,” says Lin on his business web site.

“What would your life become if you have a steady source of passive income through property, and you don’t need to work for money anymore? What possibilities does that open up to your life?”

The right mindset, strategies, and coaching would enable people to find financial freedom, he says.

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