Wills and Trust

Wills and Trust Wills and Trust are often a topic of discussion. In particular, what is the difference and which should I have? The following is a brief explanation on the difference between a Will, and a Trust. First and foremost, State rather than Federal law governs what happens to your property upon your death. Upon one’s death, you may hear the word probate, but not know what that means. Probate is the process of administering one’s estate, with or without a will. The purpose of probate is to: 1) […]

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Premises/Trespasser Liability

Premises/Trespasser Liability Considering the current trend, trespass on church property has been steadily increasing. Whether your church is accepting of those individuals or not, there are a few things you need to know regarding your liability. First and foremost, your church has the legal duty to implement and maintain measures which reduce the foreseeable risk of harm that may come to others; trespassers or otherwise. Liability: When someone suffers and injury, regardless of whether they are a tenant, contractor, church member, visitor, or trespasser, your church may be liable. Although […]

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How Zoning Code Effects Church Property Use

Municipalities establish a General Plan which contains the overall land use scheme by restricting some areas to particular usages. These governmental actions must not be arbitrary, capacious (unreasonable) or vague. Zoning regulations, or codes, must be reasonable and bear a rational relationship to the objectives of the city, while taking affirmative measures to provide housing for all. Municipalities have been given reasonable control over the private use of land from the state through enabling statutes for the protection of the health, safety, morals, and general welfare of its citizens. Legal […]

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Must a Church Apply for Tax-exempt Status

Does a Church need to be a registered 501 (c)(3) Tax-exempt Organization? Although not all non-profit organizations fall within section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, religious organization do. As such, this article focuses only on those 501(c)(3) organizations and whether or not a church must apply for tax-exempt status.   Defined: According to the IRS, to be tax-exempt religious organization, an organization must be organized and operated exclusively for exempt purposes set forth in section 501(c)(3), and none of its earnings may inure to any private shareholder or individual. […]

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Why Use Bushore Real Estate

Why use Bushore Real Estate; here are a few reasons. We are a father and son California Real Estate team with offices in northern and southern California. We specialize in nearly all matters concerning Church Real Estate, including religious, nonprofit and tax-exempt organizations. Over decades of carving out a name for ourselves among church groups, we found a niche with locating and/or uniting church property buyers, sellers, landlords, and tenants. Along the way, our skills have been fine-tuned covering all aspects of forming, maintaining, merging and dissolving nonprofit organizations and […]

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Church Parsonage

The Harm in Renting Out the Church Parsonage We often work with churches that have a parsonage going unused or rented out to non-members. As such, the question arises as to tax liabilities. The primary concern is either Property Taxes or Unrelated Business Income Tax. Parsonage Property Taxes: A residential property, (parsonage) owned by the church and being leased does affect the property tax exemption, namely the religious exemption. However, the parsonage may still quality under a welfare exemption. That is, provided its use can be deemed incidental to the […]

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What is a Letter of Intent?

Looking to sell your property? Whether or not your property is on the open market, your church may receive a Letter of Intent from a prospective buyer. Simply put, a Letter of Intent is nothing more than one party putting into writing their intent to perform a specific act. In the real estate world, this usually means that a potential buyer has provided you with the basic terms in which they intend to purchase your property. But should you sign it? Nearly every single Letter of Intent we have seen has […]

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choosing an entity

Choosing the Right Entity

What Type of Business Entity is Right for your Church? Although this article will focus on the formation of a corporation, it is important to understand all the different types of business entities and how they will affect your church. Entity Type: Unincorporated Association An association is formed once two or more individuals mutually agree to act for a common lawful purpose, whether for profit or not. An unincorporated association can act and conduct business in the same manner as the other entities listed below, including holding ownership of real […]

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Cell Towers at Churches

Cell Tower’s at Churches

Are Cell Towers and churches a good fit? This article does not focus on the negotiations involved with leasing your property for cell towers at your church; which can be challenging. Rather, the intent of this article is to provide a resource for churches to use when considering whether or not to permit a cell tower at their location; in no particular order. Risk vs. Reward: If you’re like most churches, your primary concern is in the amount of monthly income you will receive in rent. In short, is the […]

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Mechanics Lien

Preventing Mechanic’s Liens

Preventing Mechanic’s LiensNot all churches have tenants, and those that do, may not have tenants that desire to make some sort of capital improvement to the church property. However, this article is not limited to churches with tenant(s) but rather all churches and preventing mechanic’s liens. At some point or another, all buildings require some sort of repair or maintenance. What comes to mind in a new roof, but this article also applies to any repairs commenced of the property from the roof all the way down to the getting […]

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