Discussion:Houses donated to fire dept for practice

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Discussion Forum Index --> Tax Questions --> Houses donated to fire dept for practice

Please see Discussion:Donation of House to Fire Department for more in-depth discussion on this topic.

Panael (talk|edits) said:

30 December 2005
I have a client who let the local fire department use two properties for training. He obtained appraisals from a local real estate company and a thank you letter from the fire department. Is this deductible as a charitable contribution? If so, what else is needed? Looks to me like it is, and would need to complete Form 8232 (I think that's the right number...). Anything else? Thanks.

Martineo (talk|edits) said:

30 December 2005
Probable yes:

Eligibles: Federal, state and local government .IRS Pub 78 need to be cheked--Orlando

Riley (talk|edits) said:

31 December 2005
If the fire department is either a governmental entity or a 501(c)(3) organization, the Tax Court has approved such a deduction.

Panael (talk|edits) said:

31 December 2005
Thanks for the feedback. This is my first time here, and I appreciate it.

Riley (talk|edits) said:

1 January 2006
Presumably, the fire department burned both properties to the ground. In many cases, burning the property to the ground would actually increase the value of the property as a whole; however, the deduction is still allowed.

PGattoCPA (talk|edits) said:

2 January 2006
The deduction of appreciated property is the FMV at the time of the donation. If client donated only the structures (and not the land for continued use by the fire department), then the appraisal would have to state the FMV of the structures separately from the FMV of the land to be a valid appraisal for deductibility purposes. (Unless, of course, the appraisals you mention were for the structures only.)

If the appraisal was not reported that way, then I would get the same appraiser and see if s/he could revise the report to show the constitution of the FMV between land and structures at the time of the original appraisal. That is, the appraiser should not take into account any factors that have occurred since the time of the original appraisal.

Further, the current year deduction is limited to 30% of the taxpayer's AGI.

Sfcpa (talk|edits) said:

3 January 2006
you must attach the apprisals to the return

Dennis (talk|edits) said:

15 August 2006
There are other discussions pertaining to this issue. Speaking as a fire commissioner, this is a service our department charges for, not a donation.

Green hunter (talk|edits) said:

15 August 2006
P -

I am confused - your client allowed the fire department to use his property, was teh property completely destroyed? Also what was the taxpayers basis in this property, is there any? I imagine that the structure was of limited worth why would you other wise allow someone to destroy the property. Personally, I would need more background because my conclusion is that the taxpayer (assuming the FD qualifies) does not have any basis for a CC.

Dennis (talk|edits) said:

15 August 2006
One consideration is disposal cost. In New York, for example, construction debris is classified as hazardous waste and tipping fees can be huge. Burning reduces volume considerably.

Jdugancpa (talk|edits) said:

16 August 2006
Green Hunter - 800 sq ft house on 8000 sq ft house on 7th ave up the street from my office in Kirkland, WA. A few houses up the street is a home built about 3 years ago that sold for $1,500,000. Maybe the 800 sq ft house is worth $20k and the lot it sits on is worth $600k. It could well be that the house will be torn down to construct a new house, but if it has value, it can be contributed. Charitable contribution of appreciated capital gain property may give the deduction, even if the basis is less than the current FMV.

Belle (talk|edits) said:

October 12, 2008
LOTS of discussion in this thread


Mscash (talk|edits) said:

30 July 2009
This is an old thread but here is a new story on the subject. Short version: You can't take a deduction.


Note, any posts by non-pros have been moved to this related discussion on the consumer forum, along with any related responses/conversations that related to the related responses.

Solomon (talk|edits) said:

9 November 2010
135 TC 24 Rolfs & Gallagher

Belle (talk|edits) said:

November 9, 2010
Solomon, thanks for that link.

Dblchai (talk|edits) said:

9 November 2010
Not sure what city/state your in, but there may be some property tax relief for when the home is uninhabitable and in use by the fire department (that's the way it works in Cook County, IL). Might look like a hero by suggesting that a real estate tax assessment attorney take a look at it.

JR1 (talk|edits) said:

November 9, 2010
I believe only the 8th Circuit, in the 70's, ONCE ruled that you could take charitable deduct. All others say clearly, no.

Podolin (talk|edits) said:

12 December 2011
New article on it:[[1]]

Ckenefick (talk|edits) said:

12 December 2011
This isn't new. We've already had a major discussion on Rolfs.

Dennis (talk|edits) said:

12 December 2011
Indeed...but to summarize ... Scharf is pretty much superseded by the benefit standards set in UNITED STATES v. AMERICAN BAR ENDOWMENT, 477 U.S. 105 (1986)477 U.S. 105

Deductions are available albeit limited if you dot all the i's.

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