Estate Tax – The 2010 Step Up Basis Nightmare

The old saying is the best laid plans of mice and men so often seem to go wrong. When it comes to the government, this is a statement that is used the vast majority of the time since the bumbling of politicians creates some situations that are simply head shakers. This is exactly the case with the step up basis in estate tax for 2010.

This can get confusing, so let’s start off with the basics. The step up basis is simply the value of some asset at a date in time from which a gain is calculated. Let’s say I buy a share of Microsoft in 1990 [I wish!] and I sell it today. I would pay rather large capital gains taxes on the gain in value of that share of stock between 1990 and 2010.

The passing of an asset from a deceased person to their heirs triggers a bit of a different calculation. Let’s assume the same situation as above. Instead of selling the stock in 2010, I die after being attacked by a bear [might as well make it exciting] in 2002. At that point, my stock is transferred to my daughter per my written will. This transfer constitutes a taxable event. Historically, she would pay tax on the gain from the date of my death till she sold the item. The use of my date of death allows her to -step up- the value of the stock instead of pay taxes on all the gains since 1990.

The Bush tax cuts were designed to reduce a number of taxes, but they went a step farther with the estate tax. They were designed to phase it out. In fact, there is no estate tax in 2010. That is nice and all, but the problem is the step up basis for capital gains above is now gone for the year. Instead of paying capital gains on the increase in value from the date of my death, she will have to pay them on the gains from 1990. That is a huge difference and constitutes a massive amount of money going out of my family and to the government. What did the government do for this money? Nothing, I just died!

Is there anything one can do about this mess with the step up basis? Unfortunately, there is not. It is simply another example of the government creating a mess with the best of intentions.

Barry Milton writes about tax planning and other financial planning subjects for UFCAmerica.com.

Make the best decision with General contractor Knoxville.

The General contractor Knoxville is highly skilled and specializes in remodeling, renovations, new construction and additions. They provide their clients with an architect who is experienced and can help their clients design their home from scratch. They give attention to the minutest detail so that they can provide their clients with a home that results in their happiness. For building a custom home it is very complicated to pick the right materials. They combine the best technologies and techniques in their work to give their clients the best results. They want their results to exceed their client’s expectations. They help their customers make modifications or even give their ideas a wider view and implementing them.

Benefits

Their entire clients dream is very important for them and they make sure to make their dreams a reality. They provide their services at affordable rates. They assist their customers from the initial point of designing till the end of the project. They provide their clients with the information of the building process that they may be lacking. They can help pick the best available high quality products in the budget of their customers. They combine the best technologies and techniques in their work to give their clients the best results. They want their results to exceed their client’s expectations. They help their customers make modifications or even give their ideas a wider view and implementing them.

Need for general contractors

They try their best to finish their project before or on time. The professionals involved in the building process are very trustworthy and experienced. They customize their services according to their clients’ needs and desires. General contractor Knoxville goal is to make sure that they can make the ideas of their clients come to life. They make sure to put their effort, detailing, attention and workmanship in their project so that they can provide their clients with quality results. They aim to provide their services on time and not to disappoint their customers. They provide their clients with correct estimates without adding extra with time. Their contractors are experts in their field. They have all the knowledge, skills and experience required to guide their customers to the right track and making the right decisions as there are many decisions required to be made during this process. They will give honest advice and suggestions to their customers on decisions required to be made. They help their clients decide with the design.

General contractor Knoxville goal is to make sure that they can make the ideas of their clients come to life. They make sure to put their effort, detailing, attention and workmanship in their project so that they can provide their clients with quality results.

Reading the reviews provided by the author is one of the best ways to gain necessary information on

Important Vastu Tips for Home

Your home is nothing but your extension as believed by the Vastu Shastra, one of the sacred Hindu Scriptures that deals with the architecture, design and directions of specific areas of residential or commercial constructions. It is said that a house that meets the criteria and parameters as set by the vastu brings peace, prosperity, health and happiness to its residents and many people vouch that they have had different experiences on different vastu arrangements. The popularity of vastu has not only remained to India but it has transcended to other countries as well and people have experienced pleasant changes after implementing Vaastu Tips for Home. Vastu implementation is not as complicated as Astrological Match Making that has several facets and needs the consultation of expert, rather it can be easily implemented by you also. However, taking consultation from a vastu expert or a knowledgeable astrologer can be the best possible way to ensure peace and prosperity.

Let us discuss some normal things whose implementation can help you immensely.

If your master bed is large and you have split the mattresses and you wake up every morning without feeling fresh then possibly it is time to get a unified single mattress for the larger bed. Splitting the mattress can sap your energy and is not recommended in vastu. In the present times, LCDs and LEDs adorn the bedrooms but vastu does not recommend TV or any sort of energy sapping devices in eth bedroom. Always arrange the furnitures of your drawing room so that it resembles octagon, square or circle. Wayward orientation will keep you restless so arrange them according the prescribed format and soon you will gain the much needed peace of mind. Generally, people tend to keep mops or brooms in kitchen as they are regularly used after the preparation of meal etc. However, vastu strongly recommends that they should be kept outside the kitchen. Corners are the most neglected potion of any house but it must be bright and you must ensure that substantial amount of light reaches there. This will help you in overcoming many obstacles in your work. People have developed the liking to grow thorny plants like cactus in their house which is again not recommended by the vastu. Ensure that your house has proper air circulation and that sunlight reaches in the house properly.

These things can easily be implemented and you will soon discover the benefits thereafter.

History And Rewards Of Folding Room Dividers

Folding room dividers very first originated in Asia, a lot more particularly in China, as early as the 7th century. These sorts of room dividers had been observed in several various sizes, from very huge so that you can be fitting for significant palaces and had been utilised by royalty, down towards the smaller sizes that had been employed extra for decorative purposes on tabletops as well as other types of surfaces. Fold room dividers are produced of 3 or far more panels that had been attached together. The designs of these types of dividers are usually intricate, so significantly to ensure that they became to be recognized as attractive decorative pieces also as for the function of privacy.

As history and style progressed, these types of folding room dividers had been no longer utilized just for dwelling purposes. As much as nowadays, they are able to be noticed in several places like hospitals, restaurants, as well as in corporate offices. Needless to say, the style which is becoming employed could have already drastically changed, but the major purposes for the dividers are still the very same.
When acquiring folding room dividers, you must appear at a couple of attributes that can have an effect on your buy. There are several diverse styles and supplies which are becoming applied within the creation of these sorts of dividers. Probably the most typical 1 nowadays are those which are created of plain wood. Be it dark wood or some thing light colored like cherry maple, room dividers produced of just wood will forever stay a classic. Obviously, you will discover also those which can be created of glass. These types of folding room dividers are typically framed employing metal, and come in numerous colors and glazing. It can be inside the glaze that the designs generally differ in.

In case you wish to go using the much more classic type of folding dividers, you can find surely a great deal available that still function the original style of Chinese art. Among the most typical designs is those that function a dragon or numerous dragons on the panels. In Chinese culture, dragons represent strength, masculinity, and growth. It thought to be by the Chinese as the king of all of the other animals, which is why it can be probably the most depicted animal in Chinese art in common, not just in folding room dividers. Other sorts of animals which can be commonly noticed in conventional Chinese folding dividers are the peacock, the horse, along with the eagle.

No matter what style or material you make a decision on for the folding dividers, you happen to be unquestionably generating an excellent choice in purchasing 1. It’s going to undoubtedly add a touch of class and culture to any room which you may perhaps determine to location it in.

World Architecture Festival 2013 – a report

By Team IAnD Photography: Courtesy WAF’13

October 2 -4 2013 saw three busy days of ideation, discussion and critiques on global architecture and design at the World Architecture Festival held at Moshe Safdie designed Marina Bay Sands, Singapore – a venue as awe inspiring as the projects that unfolded within its festive panorama-

The World Architecture Festival opened to enormous numbers (reportedly the biggest yet) with the theme of 2013 bring -Value and values’, -to examine the relationship between perceptions of financial value and the values that architects typically hold about their work.-

Director of WAF’13, Paul Finch commenting on the sheer quality and diversity of the projects entered into the festival, and shortlisted for the final round of awards, said that the array of projects demonstrated the increasingly global nature of the event.

Among various stalwarts from various quarters of the world, Mumbai’s Ar. Sanjay Puri’s corporate project in Jaipur -72 Screens’, was also shortlisted for the awards.

A vibrant, thought-provoking three-day session of presentations of various projects by the architects, seminars and talks on diverse issues that touch and plague the building industry were discussed and debated. Noted international speakers, project critiques and appreciations apart, everyone waited with baited breath as the ultimate honour – the winner of the World Building of the Year 2013 award was announced and granted to the Aukland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki in New Zealand by Frances-Jones Morehen Thorp and Archimedia.

The four main award winners including World Building of the Year Award were Botanical Garden Australia designed by landscape studio Taylor Cullity Lethlean and plant expert Paul Thompson for Landscape of the Year; National Maritime Museum of China designed by Cox Rayner Architects for Future Project of the Year; and Barcelona Apartment by David Kohn Architects for World Interior of the Year.

As part of INSIDE: World Festival of Interiors, an event held in conjunction with the WAF’13 with a concentration on interior projects, shortlisted 59 outstanding interior projects across the 12 award categories, Bars and Restaurants, Creative Re-use, Culture, Display, Education, Health, Hotels, Offices, Residential, Shopping Centres, Shops, and Transport. For the complete list of awardees, do check out:

to view images click on globalhop.indiaartndesign.com

An Initial Introduction To Interior Architecture

Interior architecture can be seen as different from architecture in that the interior rooms, halls, doorways + stairs can be re designed once the initial design for the architecture of the building as a whole is in place. Interior architecture can be used to completely re design, for example a room such as a kitchen, bathroom in a family home which is quite common or a meeting room or office layout in a business environment or modify the existing design based on original architecture.

The interior architecture of a building can be changed for many reasons, either practical, where the interior of a building is going to be used for a new purpose or due to changing fashions or updated technologies. Examples of this are very common in many towns and cities where the exterior of a building is in a style of when it was built, say in the late 19th century but it’s interior has been completely re vamped incorporating modern design fashions and the latest technology.

The use of interior architecture means that for many buildings over a hundred years old the development of the look and design of their interior and exterior could often be the work of many different architects or teams of architects. This has meant for many of our towns and cities the architecture on view can be widely varied and reflect many different periods of time, design fashions and architecture styles. Some of which can be seen as timeless whilst others from certain eras can be seen as garish and bad taste 20 – 30 years down the line.

However no matter what a buildings exterior may look like with the help of interior architects, refurbishment and fit out specialists the interior look and feel of many buildings can be totally transformed with enough time and money bringing them up to date, that is until the latest style, fashion and technologies need integrating a few years down the line.

The main thing to differentiate architecture + interior architecture is that an architect is concerned with the concept of designing a new building the interior architect is concerned with the modification of existing buildings, some of which the design can be seen as timeless and look good for centuries whilst other will be an eye saw and look dated within 10 – 30 years.

This is quite a large and interesting topic, for further reading would advise looking at books + articles, online, in bookshops, news agents or in libraries on architecture, design + interior design.
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Why Oak Is Used To Make Bespoke Furniture.

When it comes to bespoke furniture most people only think of oak. Working with oak is a joy for any professional cabinetmaker, both dense and strong wood, oak is also tremendously attractive largely due to its endless permutations of grains and markings.

It is the grains in oak that adds immeasurably to its appeal, and allow it to be used in the construction of different styles of cabinet wood, from traditional to contemporary and even modern. While the most popular style of oak wood grain being the low grain natural brown colour finish. For those who want their bespoke furniture to be a little more exotic then they may well choose for it to be finished in Tiger Oak wood, which while brown and natural in colour comes with much more defined stripes. Burr Oak wood is another popular variation, with the burrs in the grain standing out because of their tightly knitted whirls.

No matter which variation of oak grained timber you choose for your bespoke furniture, it is sure to be a talking point in your home, office or business premises. Cabinets made from solid oak are fairly rare these days, although there is no detracting from a rich veneer to finish causing the same pleasing and solid effect that oak will always bring.

Cabinet furniture designed and produced in oak lends itself to a variety of styles, from traditional to contemporary and even to modern, although, as most lovers of bespoke oak furniture will tell you, when it is made in the rustic oak designs of old. Then oak comes into its own.

Irrespective of the grain finish chosen , furniture made from oak requires very little in the way of maintenance, All that is required is a coating of natural furniture wax four times every year to keep that oak furniture looking its best in the living room, dining room or the bedroom.

Creating A Web Site With A Search Engine Optimized Architecture

A web sites architecture is what grounds all future search engine marketing efforts. An optimal web site architecture facilitates a search engine in traversing
and understanding the site. Therefore, creating a web site with a search engine optimized architecture is a major contributing factor in achieving and maintaining high search engine rankings.
Architecture should also be considered throughout a web sites lifetime by the web site developer, alongside other factors such as aesthetics and usability. If a new feature does not permit a search engine to
access the content, hinders it, or confuses it, the effects of good content may be reduced substantially.For example, a web site that uses Flash or AJAX technologies inappropriately may obscure the majority
of its content from a search engine.

Optimizing a sites architecture frequently involves tinkering with variables that also affect usability and the overall user perception of your site. When we encounter such situations, we alert you to why
these certain choices were made. Sometimes we find that SEO enhancements run counter to usability. Likewise, not all designs that are user friendly are search engine friendly. Either
way, a compromise must be struck to satisfy both kinds of visitors users and search engines.

One common misconception is that search engine optimization efforts can be made after a web site is launched. This is frequently incorrect. Whenever possible, a web site can and should be designed to be
search engine friendly as a fundamental concern.Unfortunately, when a preexisting web site is designed in a way that poses problems for search engines,search engine optimization can become a much larger task. If a web site has to be redesigned, or partially
redesigned, the migration process frequently necessitates special technical considerations. For example,old URLs must be properly redirected to new ones with similar relevant content.

Landscaping services to help prepare a beautiful garden

If you are the owner of a home with a big garden then landscaping services can be of great help to you. Landscaping is a common service used by homeowners with big gardens to increase the beauty of home garden and make it a great place to enjoy tea and nice sunlight. With available many landscaping companies now in the market, the landscaping is very affordable today. Some of the major benefits you can get by hiring professionals is as follows:

Aesthetics:

Professional landscapers Gilbert can completely transform the look of your garden with best possible utilization of garden space. Professional landscapers provide the landscaping services for complete garden along with your complete plot layout for overall landscaping. Different landscaping techniques applied are weather tested to ensure the best garden look in all seasons. Now days landscapers also provide customized landscaping services to design your garden as per your needs.

Variety:

Professional landscaping in Gilbert provides you with plenty of options for your garden. The landscapers can help build a garden for you with rich grown grass, get seeds of outside country flowers suitable for your garden, make a space for growing vegetables and much more. Professional landscapers are well equipped with the latest equipment and are trained to make your garden soil evenly fertilizer for proper growth and nourishment of complete landscaping. The professional landscapers now a days provide services to write names, cut a garden plant in specific shapes and many more customized services to make your garden look more attractive.

Time saver:

Professional landscapers require almost half the time over inexperienced local landscapers for providing your garden quality looks and beautiful landscaping. Professional landscapers work in a team with different experts in team. All team members of professional Gilbert Landscape contractors are equipped with latest machinery for landscaping. It is the reason why they require less time and are able to provide greater quality service for landscaping.

Less maintenance required:

Landscaping work done by professionals require minimal maintenance to maintain the landscaping services. The work is done only by professionals who are experienced and are training obtained. Therefore there are hardly any faults in the service. The maintenance requirement is only for maintaining garden plants and providing them with timely nutritions and water to keep them fresh always. As a part of maintenance, professional landscaper provides supplies for bug controls and garden protection for vegetable and flower plants.

Affordable cost:

Landscaping services come in many different packages. Based on your house garden size, overall requirement for landscaping and plantation requirements for your garden, one can choose any package. The professional services are available at slightly higher costs then the local inexperienced service provider. However the quality of services and benefits offered are far greater than any local service provider.

Searching for the finest Landscaping Services Scottsdale has to offer? Click on this link for additional details.

Furniture Store Miami The One Stop Shop Of Furniture

Remodeling your own home is not that easy. You have to check on the furniture and fixtures that you can install or put inside your home. It is very important for you to exert your creativity power in order to have an elegant and very appealing home.

As you think of remodeling your home you usually think of which furniture store that can provide you all the furniture that you need. In thinking of which furniture shops to do business with, it will be better to think on the important factors you want to consider. The first thing that you have to determine is what are furniture that you need to install, although there are great numbers of furniture shops out there where you can avail those furniture that you need.

Check out furniture store Miami that you can visit and get the furniture that you would want. There are furniture store Miami that offers layaway or interest free plans to qualified customers on purchases over a certain amount. It usually offer sale during holidays, sale during end of the season clearance as well rebates and variety of discounts.

If you are looking for the best furniture shop that has everything necessary to completely furnish a room, you can check furniture store Miami. Aside from the different couches, chairs, tables, there are also lighting fixtures, beddings, mattress, pictures, wall hanging and even having window treatment and home decoration accessories. If you are going to remodel a home, furniture store Miami is what you need to visit to get the furniture you need. You do not have to go from one place to another because it has complete sets of furniture and even those smallest accessories that you can install with your home.

When it comes to bedding, go with a furniture shop Miami that is complete in terms of choices of beds in every size and style, from four poster beds complete with head and footboard. They have all the best type of youth furniture collections that are very durable and are adjustable so that as they grow your children can still use it.

And if you are consulting an interior designer for sure, you and your interior decorator will have fun doing shopping all the furniture that you need with the best furniture store Miami. You can save a lot of time and effort in searching for the things that you need to use in making improvements. You can also check their online business websites. For sure they have some pictures of the kinds of furniture that you are looking for.

Allison Ayson

Manage your Housing Society

There are very a handful of features for a Housing Societies to perform. A Housing Society incurs bills on a lot of counts such as payment of the Electric power Bills, water bills, Municipal Tax expenses. The creating has to be preserved, repaired and renovated. As a result, substitute expenditure will have to be incurred. Society may possibly have to appoint some individuals/ organizations to maintain the constructing clean. Assortment of rubbish, safety, administration, producing guides of accounts, growth and routine maintenance of the backyard garden. Could be an electrician, a plumber and so forth could be required for the repairs of the developing.

To fulfill these bills, the Society collects regular fees from the users. Occasions crop up when correspondences with associates / outsiders has to be attended to. There may arise liason operate with local authorities, auditors, advocates and many others.

The Society is also essential to maintain particular registers and documents as approved beneath the MCS Act, and the Bye-Laws of the Society. A Handling Committee, elected by the users requires selections with regards to all these features and executes them. The users of the Controlling Committee could not be well geared up with the expertise they may possibly not have time to attend to these. Therefore, these times a Society Supervisor is appointed to go to to these features.

Other than the over needs to control your society, Society management to deal with all the statutory necessity of the Federal government, details has been described beneath:

Update all statutory registers Statutory Investments Other Investments Election Appointment of Statutory Auditor Audit Rectification Report Income Tax Return

To manage the need of these actions can be managed by means of software program, where society123.com comes in picture. Society123.com offers you trouble-cost-free system to rework your Society into on the internet Society Administration, Society Accounting, Society Interaction, making it highly functional and easily workable.

Society123.com offers you hassle-free platform to transform your Society into Online Housing Society Management, Society Accounting, Society Communication, making it highly functional and easily manageable

Online Certified Java Developer Course

This online Java course is designed keeping only three things in mind; Simplicity, Efficiency and Coverage. Certified java developer course is designed by working java professionals with a combined experience of nearly 25 years in java behind them. The development of this course was the meeting point of all these java professionals where they shared their magical ideas, concepts, real life experience and problems which resulted in this exciting course. Come! Join the gang and enjoy the world of Java.
Simplicity – The entire course is designed in a very simple way such that anyone who just reads, watches and practices this, would go on to become an effective Java Developer.
Efficiency – This course takes you through a journey in which you will be learning and experiencing a whole new world to its fullest by putting in minimum effort
Coverage – No matter how we study, we all have topics to be covered while we do it. This course covers all topics required for you to become a self sustained Java Developer.

Java is the hottest piece of cake in the IT Industry today and it will be tomorrow. This is an ideal platform for you to start learning Java and go on to explore more advanced features and ideas of Java in the future. There are more and more Companies who are migrating their applications from VB, dot NET and other technologies to Java which leaves a huge empty space to be filled with Java and its technologies. Start early, learn Java and explore the countless opportunities in Java

I am very happy to know that you are reading this. This is something which can change the course of your career towards the right direction; we don’t expect you to be a full time programmer to learn Java, we have designed this course such that a person with minimum or no prior programming knowledge is comfortable working with our text tutorials and watching videos to get used to programming and Java. Join this Online Java course and wake the sleeping programmer up from inside you.

What Sets Gloster Furniture Apart

If you follow quality teak outdoor furnishings closely, then one name will come up with regularity: Gloster Furniture. Gloster has been the gold standard for going on four decades now, and it has been that way for a reason. They give consumers quality and choice, something that is rarely if ever reproduced by their competition. If you have been considering a purchase of high quality outdoor furniture, but youre not really sure why you should go with one brand over another, consider the ways that Gloster sets itself apart from the rest of the pack.

Diverse Catalogue

At last count Gloster Furniture offered its customers more than 300 different products, ensuring that there is a style for every taste and preference. How is it possible, you might ask, that one could have 300 different looks for outdoor teak furniture? The diversity comes thanks in part to Glosters attention to detail, their sophisticated design, and their rigid quality control standards. Gloster uses the finest teak materials and craftsmanship from all over the globe, and coincidentally, it appeals to locations worldwide. The companys mark can be felt in more than 50 countries and on six of the seven continents in the entire world, taking the something for everyone creed to a whole new level.

Industry Recognition

Gloster Furniture makes an impact on the outdoor furniture sales market not only because of the choices the company provides for their customers, but also for the proven quality as recognized by numerous industry awards. When it comes to quality and design, the casual furniture industry has recognized this company as the name to beat year in and year out. The professional standards, in particular, have received the most praise as the company thinks about details that slip through the cracks at other furniture manufacturers.

Customer Service

Perhaps most convincing to consumers, who buy Gloster Furniture, is the commitment to quality customer service with warranty standards that ensure every piece of furniture that leaves Glosters plant facilities is one that will give the customer what he is looking for out of a quality piece of teak outdoor furniture. Whichever vendor you purchase your outdoor furniture from, whether its Gloster Furniture or another brand, you should accept nothing less.

Creating An Indoor Or Outdoor Pet Memorial Garden

You can connect to the healing process by creating a pet memorial garden dedicated to your beloved pet. Losing a family dog, cat, or other pet can cause feelings just as strong as when we lose our human companions to death. Finding ways to cope is essential to moving through the grieving process. By creating an indoor or outdoor space in memory of your pet, you are sure to find greater peace as you contemplate positive memories that you shared with your loved one.

The first step in creating a memorial space is to determine whether it would be better suited indoors or outdoors. People who live in apartments or other dwellings without a private backyard will find that they can create a small indoor garden using a planter box or a large plant container. If you have a small porch space, you can place several plant containers in a dedicated space, and add a memorial stone that includes your pets name for a personal touch.

If you do have a private outdoor space, you will find that there are endless opportunities for creating a memorial garden. You may already have a garden space in which you can put a memorial stone, a bench that has been engraved with a special poem that reminds you of your beloved pet, angel figurines, or other objects that honor your pet.

You can also start from scratch with an outdoor space by planting a memorial tree with a stone engraved with your pets name near the tree. This will offer a living tribute to your pet.

Adding wind chimes, hanging your pets tags from a tree, using engraved memorial stones, or putting a framed picture of your pet near your indoor memorial garden are all beautiful ways to remember your pet. No matter what methods you use to honor your pet, create a unique space that speaks to you and that helps you to remember your pet with fond memories.

Whether a newly planted tree, an existing tree, indoor potted plants, an outdoor garden, or any other dedicated space for your pet memorial, you will find that tending to that space offers you solace and a place to honor your special friend. Helping your indoor or outdoor garden grow will also assist you in working through the grieving process. Many families have found that their family members, young and old, are helped through their own process of grieving when they are able to honor their deceased pet with a memory garden.

Property Investment Vs Property Speculation

Most people get Real Estate wrong for two simple reasons.:

1. They don’t understand the difference between an asset and a liability
2. They don’t understand the difference between investing and speculating

The broke majority live under the misguided belief that their family home is an asset. An asset by definition is Something valuable that an entity owns, benefits from or has use of, in generating income. The key is the words generating income. By that definition your home is not an asset, it is a liability. It does not generate income, it costs you money.

The broke majority will borrow as much as they possibly can, to buy the most expensive home they can afford, in the mistaken belief that this is a good investment. In fact they are are burdening themselves with the worst kind of debt. Long term, expensive, non-deductible debt that produces no income in return. The same kind of debt that lead to the housing collapse in the USA.

Successful investors understand this crucial point. Your home is not an investment.

The Business Dictionary defines an investment as Money committed or property acquired for future income. Now some will argue that an investment doesn’t have to produce an income and cite as an example gold bullion, collectibles or share futures contracts. By definition, none of these are investments, they are items of speculation. They can go up in value or, just as easily, go down. You are speculating on the future trade-able value, not investing in the inherent value of the income an asset represents. Tens of thousands of homeowners around the world discovered in 2009 that home values can fall and can fall dramatically and disastrously.

If you buy a house to live in with no income return expected from it, but in the hope it will increase in value, you are speculating not Investing.

If you buy a house to rent out, you are investing. The Australian government has long recognised the difference and that is why they allow you to claim the expenses relating to a rental property, including interest payments, as a tax deduction but do not allow any deductions for expenses incurred in buying a house to live in. In other words, the government is willing to share the risk of investing in income generating real estate because the risks are lower than tying up your money in your home.

Smart investors have a small or no mortgage on their own home and the majority of their borrowings are for rental property because that is the lowest risk strategy. They also get the best advice they can on quickly reducing the mortgage on their home.

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