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Gifts Of Real Estate

Couple standing in front of a two-story house marquee

If you own real estate, there may come a time when you realize you no longer need nor want the property. Selling the property is usually the first idea that comes to mind, but that can feel daunting or cause concern about potential taxes from the sale.

Real estate can be used to create a significant charitable legacy. It is one of the most beneficial charitable gifts for both the donor and the nonprofit.

At the Saint Paul & Minnesota Foundation, we’ve been helping Minnesotans make gifts of real estate to support their favorite causes for decades.

Here’s How a Donor Advised Fund Works

A donor advised fund (DAF) at the Foundation can accept gifts of real estate. The property is liquidated tax-free and the cash is available to grant to the nonprofits of your choice. It’s that simple.

Your Guide to a Gift of Real Estate

Couple standing in front of a two-story house marquee

Financial Benefits

  • The charitable deduction is based on the fair market value of the real estate on the day of the gift.
  • Capital gain is typically avoided when given to a nonprofit.
  • The property is sold tax-free by the Foundation and we handle all the details of the sale.
  • Real estate can be used to establish many types of gifts, such as a charitable remainder trust or retained life estate.

Types of Real Estate that Can Be Donated

  • Residential homes
  • Commercial property
  • Vacation homes
  • Agricultural land and buildings
  • Rental properties

Get Started Today

  1. Talk with a Foundation Gift Planner about your charitable goals.
  2. Our experienced staff will work with you and your advisors to determine if a gift of real estate is right for you.
  3. Establish your own donor advised fund (DAF) and easily transfer the real estate to your DAF, which will then be liquidated tax-free.
  4. The resulting cash proceeds are available to grant to the nonprofits of your choice.

Eliminate the complexity of selling real estate yourself and give to your fullest potential. Call 651.224.5463 or email us at

How Elaine and John Donated Their Lake Home

Real estate donors John and Elaine outside

Elaine and John have enjoyed many happy times with their family at their lake home in Northern Minnesota. Lately, they don’t visit their lake home as often. Their children do not want the home, and Elaine and John are unsure what to do. If they sell, capital gains taxes would be significant, and they feel sad about selling a place filled with years of happy memories. They considered donating the property, but want to support several nonprofits – not just one.

After talking to some friends, they learned that the Saint Paul & Minnesota Foundation offers donor advised funds and has helped Minnesotans with their charitable giving for over 80 years. With a donor advised fund, the property can be donated to the fund, sold without capital gains tax, and the proceeds then granted to their favorite nonprofits.

Elaine and John spoke with a Foundation Gift Planner and created a donor advised fund and donated their lake home. Foundation staff handled all details of the sale. Now the sales proceeds are available to grant to their favorite causes. They plan to add to their fund with a gift from their estate and involve their children in their giving.

Ready to Get Started?

Start a conversation with a Gift Planner today. Call 651.224.5463 or email the team at



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