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Readers Respond: How Would You Pay the Taxes on the HGTV Dream Home?

Responses: 428


There are TWO tax issues here...

...The first tax issue is the one of the 1099 for the tax year you will recieve for a one-time "gift" worth more than $2million. THAT could total over $500,000 in taxes for that tax year. THE SECOND tax issue is the one of paying the taxes YEARLY, broken up in quarterly payments on the property. If this is in a well-off area or even halfway well-off, you will be paying THOUSANDS every quarter for taxes on the property. So, to just maintain the property, you'd have to have lots of money and the cash they give with the house won't even cover the 1099 taxes for the one-time "gift" year. After reading all this info, I'd take the cash option, have that taxed, and come away with around $600,000 in winnings, no future problems with a property I couldn't maintain. Not bad!!
—Guest reality chic


I would keep it for family gatherings And pay taxes You cannot put a value on family time!
—Guest DA

I'd sell it

The first thing I would do with the cash part is to pay my bills. Then I'd hire a CPA to do the taxes on it. Next, as soon as the house is in my name I would sell it immediately to pay the taxes as soon as possible. I would hope the house would sell fast - otherwise the IRS would be on my back and I might lose everything - I think.
—Guest Linda

It`s cash or home option now

I woyld take the 1,377,000 they offer instead of the 2014 home in CA. So after taxes thats a cool 700,000 not bad!
—Guest amari

I would take house.

We are renting now so if we won my hubby. Kids and I would go all in and pack up. We would find away to make it work. Use cash sell the Yukon and I would hope to transfer my job is nation wide. Or rent it to vacationers and go twice a year. If I won I would discuss all this with an accountant.
—Guest Matie

HGTV dream home

of course I would sell it right away, it is like the lotto, you still only get to keep what is left after paying taxes.
—Guest susie burke

Nothing is ever Free!

I believe the program is set up for people to choose the cash option for many reasons; the high tax and insurance burden, the arrangement with the developer and builder to be able to resale the property to their advantage, and protecting the community from "the undesirables" that might win. I would take the money (more than I had before the contest), take items, the car, and pay the taxes on those items. I would pass on the house. I would buy only what I could afford and invest the rest. Yes, I could get something but nothing is ever free!
—Guest Theresa


Go through a respectable vacation rental company and rent the home out for a premium rate throughout the year. Especially if the home is located in a vacation destination (such as Lake Tahoe for 2014).
—Guest Cole

Why not take a mortgage for the taxes

I guess it doesn't make sense to me to turn the winnings into tax payments and or pay the mortgage with the cash winnings, that would be a headache. I pay a mortage now, I would rather sell the house, add that to cash winnings and live a mortgage free life. I thought maybe I would turn it into a vacation home for renters but that could be a potential headache too. I would want to live in it and maybe if my hubby were out of engineering school and landed a good job that made it comfortable, great but until then, sell it, live comfortable!
—Guest JMR

Family reunited

I would look into the reverse mortgage and also renting it out. Anything to try and keep it because this could bring my family together after we've been separated for 40 years. What a blessing for my children and grandchildren to finally get to know my sisters and brothers!
—Guest Deb

How about renting

I would love to win house my wife and I have 10th anniversary this year honeymoon was in Tahoe we loved Truckee and what a surprise it would be to take her back to this home. I would try to borrow money from bank to cover taxes and perhaps rent house out during ski season to help pay the bank back. We wouldn't be ready to move there just yet anyway few years away from retirement.


I don't understand the vicious attacks on the HGTV house! If someone who wins the house & cannot afford the taxes they can either sell or rent! they have that right
—Guest eb

what would I do if I won.

My family and myself, we will stay and make it work. My husband and I are residing in an apartment, and my husband has never owned a home, so to be a winner of this fabulous home would be truly a gift from God.
—Guest Claudia

Hoping to afford that house!

If I was lucky enough to win, I feel that my husband and I would be able to keep the house, as I recently retired from nursing and my husband has been retired for some time. We have our beautiful lake home on the market, and we are looking to move, destination unknown.
—Guest Evie

Give it to some one else..

The house I needed to win was the last Dream Home in North Carolina. My first sweetheart lives out there and the house would have been the perfect connection. But this years home I'm going to pass. I live in NY and the west coast is beautiful but, too far and too expensive. If they came knocking on my door-I would respectfully recline & ask them to give it to someone else.. ..Or maybe ask if I could trade that huge home for a much-much smaller home somewhere North East NC-a small cabin-big enough to house 3 or 4 guests but small enough to maintain so when I'm old, (late 30's now) I can take care of it..But, who am I fooling-it's never going to happen. If it's one thing life's proven & told me-it's that it's not in the cards for me to have a 'fancy life.' ..As much as I dreamed of living one..it's just never going to happen.
—Guest smokey'dreams

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How Would You Pay the Taxes on the HGTV Dream Home?

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