What the Heck is “IRS Form 1099-S” and Why Does it Matter?

1099-S 2020IRS Form 1099-S is an important (and often overlooked) step in the closing process for most real estate transactions, and if you’re in the practice of closing deals yourself, this is something you probably ought to be doing.

Why is IRS Form 1099-S Necessary?

is an significant ( and frequently overlooked ) step in the close up serve for most real estate of the realm transactions, and if you ’ re in the exercise of closing deals yourself, this is something you credibly ought to be doing. The purpose of IRS Form 1099-S is to ensure that sellers are reporting their entire amount of capital gains on each class ’ sulfur tax return ( and frankincense, paying the appropriate measure of taxes to the IRS ) .
For model, if person buys an investment property for $ 100,000 and sells it for $ 150,000 ( giving them $ 50,000 of das kapital gains income ) – they ’ re supposed to report this as taxable income at the end of each year… but if they don’t, the 1099-S will act as a safeguard by keeping the IRS informed about what ’ s going on.

Disclaimer: Before we get far into this, please be aware that I am not an attorney or a CPA, and the information in this article should not be interpreted as legal or fiscal advice. Everything you read here is based on my own conclusions after reading the IRS Instructions for Form 1099-S ( and given how twist these instructions are, it ’ s wholly possible that a CPA or lawyer will have a different opinion than me ). Be certain to cross-check this data with a tax professional before you move ahead .

Who Has to File IRS Form 1099-S?

Depending on the sale monetary value, who acts as the close agent, who the seller is, what kind of property is being bought and sold ( among other things ), there may be some differences in who is responsible for filing the 1099-S .

Here’s the good news:

  • If you close a transaction with a title company or attorney (as most people do), they will collect the necessary information and file Form 1099-S for you.
  • If the seller certifies that the sale price is for $250K or less, and the sale is for their principal residence, the transaction is not reportable.
  • If the “transferor” (seller) is a corporation or a government unit (e.g. – if the property is sold at a county auction), the transaction is not reportable.
  • If the total money, services, and property received are less than $600, the transaction is not reportable.

There are a few other exceptions, but these are the most common. Read the full instructions for Form 1099-S at the IRS web site for specific details .

Here’s the bad news:

If the transaction doesn ’ thymine fall within one of these exceptions, and if you are facilitating the closing yourself, the IRS will likely expect you to file the Form(s) 1099-S, since the IRS instructions state ( in fairly unclear terms ) that “ the person responsible for closing the transaction ” is required to file Form 1099-S .
interestingly, the IRS will allow you to designate the person required to file Form 1099-S in a written agreement, as per this excerpt from their instructions…
Who Must File 1099s
As we move on to Section 3, it says…
Designation 1099s section 3
This incision goes on to say ,
Designation 1099s 2
Under these parameters, a leverage agreement seems to be an ideal document that can be written to include ALL of the above information .

Designating the Responsible Party

In transactions where I am the buyer, I can easily include a clause in my purchase agreement that identifies the Seller as the creditworthy party for any IRS coverage required as a result of their acknowledge of funds related to the transaction .
here ’ s an case of what this article could look like :
title and conveyance
With this kind of terminology included in my purchase agreement, the seller can agree to bear the responsibility for filing the 1099-S. This is a significant help because, without this speech, I would have to collect the seller ’ s Tax ID act ( which is something many people may be hesitant to provide ), complete the 1099-S myself and send a imitate to BOTH the IRS and the Seller .
technically speaking, the procedure international relations and security network ’ metric ton all that difficult… but it ’ second evening easier for the seller to complete it on their own – because they have all the information and wear ’ t have to send anything to me – they would just keep a copy for themselves and submit a copy to the IRS .

In transactions where I am the seller, I don ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate include the above-mentioned clause in my sign at all, because it ’ s not unmanageable for me to file the 1099-S on my own behalf, particularly since I already have all of the necessity data ( including my own SSN or TIN ) and I alone need to provide this text file one time to the IRS .
It ’ south besides worth noting that I don ’ thyroxine inevitably include this “ appellation article ” in ALL of my purchase agreements. In many cases ( depending on the size of the transaction, localization of the place and the parties involved ), the completion may end up running through a title agency or close lawyer – and in those cases, THEY ( the close agents ) are responsible for filing the 1099-S, so it ’ s not always appropriate to put this task on every seller across-the-board .
You ’ ll want to understand which transactions you ’ re planning to close in-house and merely include it when applicable .
If you’re still reading this, give yourself a pat on the back. This is pretty dense stuff, I know.

How to Complete a 1099-S

To complete the charge march, you will need to order blank copies of IRS Form 1099-S and IRS Form 1096. These forms need to be printed with a very specific type of newspaper and ink, and while it ’ s possible to reproduce these documents from home, it ’ s a lot easier to just order them from the IRS .
The forms are free and the IRS will send them by chain mail, normally arriving within about a week. It takes less than a moment to order. Here’s the link .
Note: If you are filing more than 250 of these forms, you are required to file electronically ( but you ’ ll probably want to engage the services of a CPA well before you get to that point ) .

The Filing Process: When Buying

For each transaction where I am the buyer, there are a few different ways I can handle the file of the 1099-S .

Option 1:

Ask the seller to complete IRS Form W-9 as part of their conclude box. When this form is completed, signed, and dated, it will provide all the information needed ( including their tin / SSN ) to complete the 1099-S and 1096 and file it appropriately .
This video explains how the W-9 works…

note : If I ’ m the Buyer/Closer and I ’ molarity filing the 1099-S for the transaction, I would list myself as the “ FILER ” and the seller would be listed as the “ TRANSFEROR ” on both the 1099-S and 1096 .

Option 2:

If I ’ ve included the above-mentioned “ appellation clause ” in my purchase agreement, I basically don ’ t have any far province, because the seller has agreed that they will file these forms on their own behalf ( this is something you ’ ll want to get verified by your own paid tax professional ) .

Option 3:

If I didn ’ metric ton get a W-9 completed by the seller and/or if I failed to include the “ appointment clause ” in my buy agreement ( or even if I did, but wanted to make the work easier for the seller ), I could put together a letter of direction and send it to the seller along with all the forms they ’ ll need to complete and submit to the IRS. In addition to the forms, I could besides provide a pre-addressed envelope for the sellers to send their forms to the IRS .
hera ’ s an example of what it might look like :
letter to seller 1099-S
1099s Example1
note : In this example above, the place is a vacant set without a physical address ( which is why I listed the legal description ). If it had been a common single-family home, I could have precisely entered the physical street address of the property and been all fix .
1096 Example1
IRS Envelope
note : If you ’ ra not sure which cover to include on the pre-addressed envelope, check the instructions on IRS Form 1096. This is what it said on the 2016 interpretation of this imprint :
IRS addresses

IRS addresses 2

The Filing Process: When Selling

For each transaction where I am the seller, the filing serve is pretty aboveboard, because I have all the information I need to complete and submit these forms myself .
I would complete a 1099-S for the transaction by filling out ALL the information on the form ( including my own Tax Identification Number, because I ’ thousand operating as an LLC ) as both the file clerk and the transferor .
I would besides complete one 1096 transmission shape with my information, including my can, as the filer. For both of these forms, the IRS and I are the lone recipients, so I would simply send the 1099-S ( Copy A ) and the 1096 form to the IRS .
hera ’ s an model of what those forms might look like :
1099s Example2
1096 Example2
It ’ mho besides worth noting that if you sell multiple properties for which a 1099-S charge is required, you will need to fill out a separate 1099-S phase for each sold property but you alone need to complete one 1096 transmittal form .
barely add up the sum amounts from box 2 of each of the 1099-S forms and enter it into corner 5 of the single 1096 kind, and enter the total phone number of forms for which the 1096 covers in box 3 of form 1096 .
In other words, if you sold three properties to one buyer, your 1099-S form might look like this…
1099s Multiple
And your 1096 might look like this…
1096 Multiple
note : See the totals in boxes 3 and 5 of form 1096 ? That ’ s what I ’ meter talking about. 🙂

What If You Fail to File Form 1099-S?

What if you fail to file a 1099-S for one of your self-closed deals. Will something bad happen to you ? ?
If you fail to file any type of 1099 kind, the IRS can technically start issuing penalties starting at $ 250 per failure to those who don ’ t follow through with this prerequisite ( that is, if they always find out about it ) .
The thing to remember is… if you ’ re using the lapp completion rationale I do – there ’ sulfur a reasonably small windowpane for the transactions where you ’ ll actually have to worry about this form in the foremost place .

Keep in mind:

  • A 1099-S is NOT required if the transaction is for less than $600 (and it’s not uncommon to find acquisition opportunities in the price range).
  • A 1099-S is NOT required if the seller certifies that the sale price is for $250K or less, and the sale is for their principal residence.
  • A 1099-S is NOT required if the seller is a corporation or a government unit (this includes most foreclosures and properties sold at county tax auctions).
  • If a property is being sold for $5,000 or more, it’s fairly easy to justify the use of a title company to close the transaction (and when you use a professional closing agent, they will handle this entire process for you).

so in my mind… I ’ megabyte primarily concerned with deals that fall between $ 600 – $ 4,999, are safely considered “ investment properties ” and are being done with private individuals ( …and not to mention, when I include the above-mentioned “ appellation clause ” in my purchase agreement, I only need to take action on behalf of myself when I ’ m the seller ) .

Where to Report the 1099-S on Form 1040

possible report options include, but may not be limited to :
sale of :

  • Investment Use Property, Schedule D
  • Primary Residence, Schedule D and Form 8949
  • Business or Rental Property, Schedule D and Form 4797
  • Like-Kind Exchanges, Form 8824, Like-Kind Exchanges, with cash, or “boot”, received

For Form 1040 filers, the 1099-S associate income, along with any early amounts required on these forms ( for early purposes ) will flow through Form 1040 based on the instructions for these forms and for Form 1040 establish in the instructions for the respective forms .
IRS forms and the instructions for the forms can be found here .

Do You Have to Pay Taxes on a 1099-S?

Yes .
form 1099 is used to report non-employment income to the IRS. There are up to 20 different types of 1099 forms. 1099-S one of those types, and it ’ s used for reporting capital gains on real estate transactions .
Businesses ( such as title companies ) and other persons involved in real estate of the realm transactions where no entitle company is involved, must issue a form 199-S to anyone who receives at least $ 600 during the year .
If the clientele or other party involved in the real estate of the realm transaction submits a 1099-S form to the IRS, as they are required to do by law and a taxpayer does not report it, the IRS will likely send a charge for taxes owed on the income .
Taxpayers do not have to include 1099s with their tax returns submitted to the IRS, but the IRS uses cybernate matching algorithm to match 1099s received from businesses or early parties involved in the real number estate transaction to check to see if taxpayers include the income on their returns. so, it is a good estimate to include the income and keep the 1099 forms with tax recurrence records for audit protection purposes .
Further Reading: How to a 1099-S and 1099-S Affect My Taxes ?

Do You Always Get a 1099-S When You Sell A House?

You may not always receive a 1099-S form .
When selling your home, you may have signed a form certify you will not have a taxable reach on the sale. If you completed a 1099-S Exemption Certification Form and you met all six criteria for not having to report the sale on your tax return, the title ship’s company or closure lawyer may not send IRS Form 1099-S, which reports the sale to the IRS and to you. ( See the section on Exemption Certification ) .
In the improbable event that the sale was for less than $ 600, you credibly would not receive a 1099-S. Or, if the transaction was closed without a title company or close lawyer and you agreed to be responsible for report of the sale ( see the section on Who Issues 1099 ’ s ), you would not receive a 1099-S .
Further Reading: 12 Tax Tips When You Sell Your home plate
Further Reading: Is it unusual not to receive a 1099-S phase for the sale of your home ?

The 1099-S Certification Exemption Form

The 1099-s Certification Exemption Form applies to principal residences lone .
The IRS Instructions for Form 1099-S, on page 1 and under the incision entitled “ Exceptions ”, outlines transactions that are not 1099-S reportable. One of those transactions – the sale of a chief mansion under certain conditions – is not reportable if certain criteria are met .
1099S Exception
The IRS requires written assurance ( certificate ) the criteria have been met. The IRS Instructions for Form 1099-S can be found here .
An model of an IRS acceptable authentication human body can be found in the appendix to IRS Revenue Procedure 2007-12 here and is duplicated below .
1099S Certification Exemption Form 1

1099S Certification Exemption Form 2
additionally, Old Republic Title has a pdf version of such a form available here .
generally, the IRS requires authentication of these six items :

  1. Owned and used as the principal residence for 2+ years of the 5-year period ending on the date of the sale or exchange of the residence.
  2. Had no sale or exchange of another principal residence during the 2-year period ending on the date of the sale or exchange of the residence.
  3. No portion of the residence was used for business or rental purposes.
  4. The sale or exchange is of the entire residence and for $250,000 or less; or if married, for $500,000 or less, and the gain is $250,000 or less.
  5. During the 5-year period ending on the date of the sale or exchange of the residence, it was not acquired in a 1031 exchange.
  6. If the basis in the residence is determined by the basis of another person who acquired it in a 1031 exchange, that exchange must have occurred more than 5 years prior to the sale or exchanged.
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