Traps for the Unwary Millionaire
Over the the past 25 years, I’ve had many incredible clients as an attorney and Realtor, and some of those clients became millionaires buying, selling, and developing real estate. Several were home builders and are now worth ten to fifty million dollars net. A few lost everything once and earned it all back. I admire successful people. All of these people had some things in common: an intense drive to succeed, tenacity and perseverance, creativity, and each of them took massive action to get where they are now.
There is one other thing most of them also have in common. Think of it as another Trap for the Unwary. Eight out of ten have done almost no estate planning to avoid probate and taxes, and they have done virtually nothing to shield their personal wealth from business liabilities. In this litigation fertile culture we live in, deep pockets are great targets for potential plaintiffs and their attorneys. A large portfolio of real estate is the ideal treasure chest, since it cannot quickly be liquidated and converted to a safe haven.
May I suggest a wise course of action? First, find a professional who really understands business entities, business development and business succession, estate planning, trust planning, capital gains taxes, insurance devices, securities, real estate, and asset protection. Do not assume your average financial adviser or average attorney understands these subjects in depth. Most do not. I strongly recommend you do not let an inexperienced planner experiment with your life’s work. I could talk for hours on this subject, but I won’t.
Second, get a good plan and implement that plan. And find a professional who is both competent and trustworthy. When you find that person, keep them for life. You will make more money even after paying their fees than you ever could taking short cuts.
To read some of my articles, see one of my sites at: http://freerealestatelaw.com/assetprotection/ and
for a review of the types of trusts that can revolutionize your planning, take a look at: http://freerealestatelaw.com/assetprotection/TypesofTrusts.html and
for a discussion of asset protection, see: http://freerealestatelaw.com/assetprotection/assetprotect.html.
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