Investments in Qualified Opportunity Funds: An Overview

Investments in Qualified Opportunity Funds: An Overview​

The Investing in Opportunity Act of 2017 established Qualified Opportunity Funds (QOFs). Investments in designated geographic areas needing job creation and economic stimulation can receive incentives under the Investing in Opportunity Act, which revises the U.S. tax code.

Capital gains tax liabilities can be delayed, reduced or even eliminated for investors who invest in these zones, known as Qualified Opportunity Zones (QOZs). Because QOFs offer significant tax benefits to investors, local communities can benefit from the same economic growth as more affluent areas. Investing in rural areas can also be spurred by tax incentives.

Before investing in a QOF, it is essential to understand its details and the risks and rewards it can provide.

Investing in Opportunity Act of 2017 led to the creation of Quality Opportunity Funds

Tax Cuts and Jobs Act 2017 legislation aimed to stimulate economic growth in areas where the recessionary conditions peaked in 2008 and have not yet fully recovered.

Bringing economic stability back to these regions requires more than government intervention. The Investing in Opportunity Act encourages private sector capital investment in disadvantaged areas.

QOF vs. 1031 Exchanges

There are some similarities between a QOF investment and a 1031 tax-deferred exchange.

 What 1031 exchanges provide for real estate investors, Opportunity Zone investing provides for business owners and investors in stocks and bonds. 1031 exchangers can defer paying capital gains tax when they sell real estate, and business owners and investors to defer or partially eliminate capital gains tax when they sell businesses, stocks, bonds, mutual funds, and almost all other types of assets that generally trigger capital gains tax gains on sale.

1031 exchanges still make sense when selling appreciated real estate, but QOFs can cover most other asset classes. Capital gains tax can be deferred indefinitely and eliminated upon death for real estate investors using 1031 exchanges, and investors in QOFs defer taxes for a specific period. Even real estate sales can benefit from QOFs, and a QOF’s sale results in the sale of gains eliminated for living beneficiaries rather than heirs.

Qualified Opportunity Funds: How They Work?

You can invest your capital gains in Opportunity Funds after selling stock, bonds, or real estate suitable for investing. The dollar amount of capital gains does not limit investments in Opportunity Funds.

Companies, partnerships, and limited liability companies can organize Opportunities Funds. Investing by qualified opportunity funds can be directed toward real estate development projects within Qualified Opportunity Zones (QOZ) or towards ownership interests in businesses within QOZs.

Investments held until 2026 can defer capital gains until the tax reporting deadline in 2027. If you have the investment for five years, you can reduce your capital gains liability by 10%, and after seven years, the reduction increases to 15%. If you hold your QOF investment for ten years, you can permanently exclude its appreciation from capital gains tax.

Investment in a Qualified Opportunity Fund

Investing in QOFs requires careful research before moving forward. QOFs are considered securities, so sponsors must provide disclosure documents to potential investors when they offer them to the public. Consider professional advisors when evaluating. Besides the merits of the proposed investments, evaluating the compensation structures of affiliated companies and the fund’s management team is crucial.

A qualified opportunity fund invests in multifamily housing, hotels, retail, offices, senior accommodation, industrial facilities, mobile home parks, and virtually every other type of real estate. Some funds offer a diversified portfolio of properties, while others only provide one property. Some funds specialize in one geographical area, while others invest wherever the sponsor believes there is the most excellent chance for appreciation. Startups or expanding companies can now access funds equivalent to “venture capital” funds.

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