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Give Your Home, But Live There for Life: Getting Started

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Calculate Your Benefits
Many of our supporters can't imagine living anywhere else but their current homes. Many would also love to make a major gift to Denver Zoo but don't have the means to make such a gift today. If this sounds like you, you may want to consider a charitable giving arrangement called a retained life estate.

How It Works
With a retained life estate, you deed a personal residence or farm to Denver Zoo now. You retain the right to occupy the home for life and continue to pay real estate taxes, maintenance fees and insurance on the property. In addition, you can later decide to rent your home or make improvements to it. After your lifetime—and the lifetime of your spouse or another person you choose to retain rights to live in the home—we take possession of the property.

Give My Home, But Live There for Life
Transfer the future interest in your property via the deed
Receive an income tax deduction and remain in your home for life
Denver Zoo

How You Benefit
  • You get the satisfaction of using your home to make a significant gift to Denver Zoo while retaining the right to live there for life.
  • You qualify for a sizable income tax deduction in the year the gift is made. The amount of your tax deduction is based, in part, on your age and the value of the property.
  • You can immediately deduct the amount of your gift up to 30 percent of your adjusted gross income and carry over any unused deduction for up to five additional years.
  • The gift isn't subject to capital gains tax.
  • The property gift eliminates federal estate tax as long as the life estate was created for you and/or your spouse.
  • If at any point you no longer wish to occupy the property, you can rent it to provide you with an additional source of income. Or, you can give Denver Zoo the right to use the property for the rest of your life. This will provide you with yet another tax deduction.

Ellen, 78, a widow, deeds her home to a qualified charitable organization, though she plans to live there for the rest of her life. The fair market value of the property is $200,000 (the house: $160,000, and the land: $40,000). Based on Ellen's age and the value of her house, her accountant determines her income tax deduction to be $142,863.1 After Ellen's lifetime, the organization takes possession of the property.

Gift Calculator Calculate your possible benefits for arranging a retained life estate with us.

Please contact Josie Stewart at 720-337-1463 or with any questions you may have about this way to support Denver Zoo.

Learn more about using real estate to support Denver Zoo.

1Based on a 2.4 percent charitable midterm federal rate.

Copyright © The Stelter Company, All rights reserved.

The information on this website is not intended as legal or tax advice. For legal or tax advice, please consult an attorney. Figures cited in examples are for hypothetical purposes only and are subject to change. References to estate and income taxes apply to federal taxes only. State income/estate taxes or state law may impact your results.

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