Tax refunds

I’ve been hearing that a lot of people in our market are expecting to get a lot of money back in refunds this year. I’ve been hearing numbers between $5,700 and $10,000. This seems much higher than in years past. Some of these people have PAID NO TAXES IN. Is anyone else seeing this?


I’m hearing a lot of talk of big refunds too, but not the kind of dollars you’re talking. Many of my customers are on unemployment, though. Which is a pretty good paying gig.

Anyway, whatever they get back in taxes, I’ll be glad to take. I don’t believe a word of it though, until the cash hits my account. We can only hope they pay us before picking out that new big screen TV at Wal-mart.

The tax season started incredibly slow this year. Apparently H&R Block had no money to do “refund anticipation loans” so people had to wait for their refunds.

That said, they are now running to us with money in hand, or expecting it this week! Sales have been brisk for the last week after doing nothing for the entire month of January. We had a nice inventory from which to pick, but will be OUT by the weekend.

The big problem, from my perspective, was that our current tenants ALSO did not pay in January, expecting their immediate tax payment. That hurt cash flow, but that money is also now streaming in complete with late charges.

So we are waiting for the Greentree list to come out - most likely today - and Jim will got shopping at the end of the week. Last month halted our march forward; this month we re-start.

I’ve seen an uptick in tax refund buyer activity the last week or so as well. I also had several folks as for deferrals until they got their tax refunds in late 2010. So far so good on paying up. Sadly, the activity will die just as fast as it starts once the refunds dry up or get spent at Wal-mart like Jeff said.

I plan on being opportunistic early on this year, but I’m holding off on getting a big inventory until the spring. I really don’t want to carry too many homes in the dead of winter after the tax man pays back his interest free loans to my buyers.

Goal for 2011, getting another park in my investment portfolio. My partner bought me out of my last deal last summer. Certainly a great learning experience. Anyone ever hear from Ryan Needler? I haven’t heard a peep form him in a while. I hope he’s ok.

Well, just as soon as I said I hadn’t heard of any big tax refunds a payor told me today they are going to H&R tomorrow with an expected return of over $11,000. I was so shell-shocked that my normal “how much of that can I get” reaction was, unfortunately, not on the tip of my tongue.

They are going to pay ahead 3 month’s payments, but aside from that I couldn’t, on-the-spot, figure a way to capture more of their interest free loan repayment from the tax man.

All of this got me thinking, if I could figure out a way to get interest free loans from lower income people, all-the-while having them think they are getting a big “return” a year later, well, I’d be rich!

Good morning Steve. The following was gleaned without permission of course:

A married couple with two young children and a combined income of $25,000 will pay no federal income taxes for 2010. Instead, they’ll get a payment of $7,085 – up from $6,700 in 2008. The larger payment comes mainly from a more generous Earned Income Tax Credit, which provides subsidies to the working poor. They will also get a $1,000-per-child tax credit. The example illustrates how complicated tax returns can be, even for low-income families, said Kathy Pickering, executive director of The Tax Institute at H&R Block.