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How Land Trusts Work

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Author's Note: How Land Trusts Work

It's clear from my research for this article that not all land trusts are created equal. Real estate land trusts are designed to shield wealthy investors from litigation and taxes, and conservation and community trusts are dedicated to keeping the land healthy and housing affordable. Call me a hippie, but I'm cheering for the second camp. Interestingly, it seems that real estate land trusts are almost more trouble than they're worth. According to lawyers who write on the subject, there are plenty of unscrupulous shysters trying to convince property owners to place their assets in a trust, promising legalized tax evasion for the price of a simple contract. The truth is that real estate land trusts are only legal in a handful of states, and even then are subject to close scrutiny. There's no such thing as a free lunch, unless you count the meatloaf in the prison cafeteria.

Related Articles

Sources

  • Asset Protection Planners, Inc. "Asset Protection: Land Trusts" (Sept. 20, 2013) http://www.assetprotectionplanners.com/articles/land-trusts?c1=GAW_SE_NW&source=USA_ASP_GEN&cr2=Search__-__USA__-__Asset_Protection__-__General_Land_Trust__-__KW__-__Land_Trusts__-__BRD&kw=land_trusts&cr5=25828482201&cr7=c&utm_source=GAW_SE_NWUSA_ASP_GEN&utm_medium=cpc&utm_term=land_trusts&mm_campaign=855a034ef7b7a842bab1570fcc434bf3&keyword=land_trusts
  • Chicago Title Land Trust Company. "What are the Benefits of a Land Trust?" (Sept. 20, 2013) http://www.ctlandtrust.com/#!what-are-the-benefits-of-a-land-trust/c5gp
  • Disney Park History. "The Florida Project: The Beginnings of Walt Disney World." (Sept. 26, 2013) http://www.disneyparkhistory.com/the-florida-project1.html
  • Exeter 1031 Exchange Services. "The History of the Land Trust" (Sept. 20, 2013) http://www.exeter1031.com/history_of_title_holding_trusts.aspx
  • History. "Walt Disney World" (Sept. 20, 2013) http://www.history.com/videos/walt-disney-world-fantasy-built-on-swampland#mankind-decoded-sneak-peek
  • Murray, John C. "The Use of Land Trusts and Business Trusts in Real Estate Transactions." 2010. (Sept. 20, 2013) http://www.firstam.com/title/resources/reference-information/jack-murray-law-library/the-use-of-land-trusts-and-business-trusts-in-real-estate-transactions.html
  • National Community Land Trust Network. "Frequently Asked Questions." (Sept. 20, 2013) http://www.cltnetwork.org/About-CLTs/Frequently-Asked-Questions
  • The Nature Conservancy. "Private Lands Conservation." (Sept. 20, 2013) http://www.nature.org/about-us/private-lands-conservation/index.htm
  • Nolo. "Probate FAQ." (Sept. 20, 2013) http://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/probate-faq-29135.html
  • West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. "Trust." (Sept. 20, 2013) http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/trust

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