New Michigan Law Expands Options for Family Cottage Transfers

PA 310 gives owners additional options for transferring family vacation property.

Michigan’s law on assessing real property for property tax purposes continues to evolve. In October 2014, Governor Snyder signed PA 310, which gives property owners an additional option for transferring family vacation property to close relatives without “uncapping” the value for property tax purposes. That means exempt family members won’t face increased property taxes when they take ownership of the property.

For property transfers after December 31, 2014, exempt transfers include those from and to:

  • the property owner or settlor of the trust that owns the property
  • the spouse of the owner or settlor, or
  • the owner’s or spouse’s parent, sibling, child (including adopted children but not stepchildren), or grandchild.

The new law means that property owners now have three ways to avoid uncapping on a transfer of ownership:

  • giving the property while alive to an exempt family member
  • leaving the property at death to an exempt family member, or
  • owning the property as joint tenants with rights of survivorship.

For more information about PA 310, see the website of attorney and Nolo author David S. Fry.