How to control the tax risks associated with your real estate operations?

The Swiss real estate market has grown impressively over the past twenty years and trends are not suggesting an imminent recession. Swiss real estate therefore remains an attractive market for private and institutional investors alike, whether Swiss or foreign.

Regardless of the form of acquisition (in your name or through an acquisition vehicle), the real estate investor is confronted with numerous obstacles. These are both legal and fiscal. For instance, restrictions still remain for foreigners seeking to acquire real estate in Switzerland.  Additionally, the question of the acquisition vehicle is absolutely essential, particularly when it comes to "exiting" the investment. Other challenges may arise, especially with regard to the taxation of the private investor, such as capital gain, taxable wealth income or real estate gain, or of the institutional investor, such as dividend remittance, real estate gain tax, VAT, etc.

All these obstacles require a professional and informed/tailored approach, especially in regards to legal and fiscal issues. This approach must take into account not only the seller's situation, but also that of the buyer, for his short-, medium- and long-term projects alike.

The tax risks related to the real estate market are also important, particularly with regard to the risks of an existing structure orback taxes. The legal obligations are also numerous, in particular the problems of profit distribution between the cantons and communes, on real estate gains, transfer duties, property taxes, various taxes and of course VAT.

In order to avoid unpleasant surprises, our specialists are at your disposal to advise you on the best way to invest in real estate in order to minimize your tax risk and maximize your opportunities for tax savings, whether at the time of purchase, for the duration of ownership, or at the exit of the investment. Our services in this area range from due diligence to exit, including the design of the acquisition structure, management of tax obligations, follow-ups with the notary and tax authorities, tax returns, and management of VAT issues and settlements.

Our Tax & Legal Specialists