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Teaming up for the White Dinosaur Trust

Wednesday, June 16, 2021 - 15:53

You may not discover your client’s charitable intent until you provide an initial recommendation. That’s what veteran financial consultants Bridgit Holly and Brook Williams found to be true when discussing a holistic financial plan with a new client.

The client’s husband had just passed away, and she was overwhelmed. They had invested in rental properties as a side business over the years. “She didn’t want to manage the properties alone but she needed income, and she wants to leave money for her kids and grandkids,” Brook says.

Bridgit says, “When someone owns appreciated assets, whether stock or real estate, and they want to diversify, I always present charitable gifts as an option.”

She and Brook started digging into their prospect’s financial statements and shared with her just exactly what she owned. “She was flabbergasted at her net worth since she and her husband had been so focused on managing the properties that they hadn’t taken the time to add it up,” Bridgit recalls.

What’s in a name
And that’s how The White Dinosaur Fund came to be. The financial consultants recommended their client create a charitable remainder trust (CRUT) by donating a highly appreciated property to Thrivent Charitable & Impact Investing (Thrivent Charitable). The trust then sold the property to create an income stream for the client.

“It’s smart from a tax standpoint because the gift allowed her to avoid immediate capital gains on the sale of the property and help offset the gains on other properties she sold,” Bridgit says. She can also carry forward the tax deduction for the gift over several years.

The client can add to the CRUT over time with gifts of cash, stock, or other assets. When she passes away, the trust will continue to distribute income to family members for 20 years, after which the remainder will go into the fund, which will benefit charities selected by the client and her family.

Naming the charitable fund became a meaningful decision for the family. The client and her husband had lived on a farm with a huge white barn they affectionately called a white dinosaur. In fact, their rental business was named for that barn. When it came time to identify the fund, the family agreed there really was only one option.

“It was an emotional moment when she named the fund,” Brook recalls. “This was not a transaction. It’s a personal relationship with the family.”

When your client is open to gifts of real estate, Bridgit suggests including Thrivent Charitable’s team of gift planners in the conversation early. “Ask the gift planners for a Zoom call so they can explain all the intricacies,” she says. “They do a great job walking clients through the steps and can start the due diligence process.”

Contact our team of gift planners to discuss charitable solutions that can help your clients manage real estate or other complex assets. Email us or call 800-365-4172 to get started.