The House is Ready to Roll: Seismic Real Estate Tax Changes Ahead

“The real-estate industry has long known it would face a fight in 2017 about how federal tax law applies to commercial and residential property.

But it is beginning to shape up to be different from what many expected. Most had predicted Hillary Clinton would be in the White House, mounting an effort to use tax code changes to increase collections from big commercial property owners.

Instead Donald Trump is coming to town. And despite his extensive background as a real-estate developer, many in the industry are expressing concern about the seismic changes in the tax code that could be ushered in by his presidency for all businesses, including real estate.

During the campaign, President-elect Trump proposed such measures as using tax policy to limit imports and boost U.S. manufacturing, but stayed silent on how the real-estate industry should be taxed. A spokeswoman for the Trump transition declined to comment on tax reform beyond what candidate Trump said during the campaign.

Still, real-estate executives say a sweeping blueprint for overhauling most of U.S. tax law made in June by House Republicans appears to have a better chance with a Republican in the Oval Office. The plan appears to be gaining traction, according to real-estate industry lobbyists who have been having extensive behind-the-scenes discussions about what it would mean for real estate.

“The House is ready to roll,” said Jeffrey DeBoer, chief executive of the Real Estate Roundtable.”

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