2009 HGTV Dream Home Winners Sell House . . . Thanks to Taxes

Following on my previous blog which estimated the tax costs of winning the 2010 HGTV Dream Home in Stowe, Vermont, this news story confirms the difficulty of hanging on to the HGTV house due to . . . TAXES!

A Florida couple who won the 2009 HGTV Dream Home has sold the property back to developer Steve Ledson after deciding it was too expensive to maintain and too far from their grandkids . . . Cheryl Smith said their taxes on the winnings would have been up to $500,000. Property taxes and assessment would have been an additional $25,000 a year. Smith said her husband, a retired engineer for Ford Motor Co., would have had to go back to work to support their Dream Home.

Other winners have tried to hang onto their homes as well, but with little success:

Of the 13 Dream Homes HGTV has given away, only two winners managed to keep their homes for any length of time. A Thousand Oaks family held on to their home for eight years before selling, but another couple had to auction off their Dream Home in Texas last year after running through their savings and taking out a loan to pay the taxes. [emphasis added]

In the end, the old saying still applies–“The Tax Man Cometh and The Tax Man Taketh Away.”