July 6, 2021
Best Ever CRE Community

Breaking Down the Deferred Sales Trust into 5 Steps  

If this is your first time reading about the other “DST,” which you may have thought was a Delaware Statutory Trust, you may want to clarify how to set one of these up. Thankfully, a  Deferred Sales Trust™ offers a unique way to sell highly appreciated assets of any kind and create a cash flow wealth plan, unlike the Delaware Statutory Trust.

The proven tax deferral strategy known as The Deferred Sales Trust offers you debt freedom, liquidity, diversification, optimal timing, and movement of wealth outside of your taxable estate, all without using a 1031 exchange. Armed with this information and insight, you can invest and build wealth like never before.

How does one create a Deferred Sales Trust? The answer is in the following 5 steps:

1. Hire a Trusted Professional to Sell Your Highly Appreciated Asset

When selling any of the below assets, you will want a trusted professional in your corner who has a track record of providing value to clients.

  • The sale of a primary residence
  • The sales of active investment real estate (this includes saving failed 1031 exchanges)
  • The sale of a business
  • The sale of cryptocurrency or stock (public or private)
  • The sale of artwork, collectibles, or rare automobiles
  • The sales of carried interest
  • The sale of GP or LP positions in your existing syndications
  • The sale of any kind of asset that is subject to U.S. capital gains tax

Many business professionals across that nation have partnered with Capital Gains Tax Solutions, which offers their clients an option when it comes to capital gains tax strategy using the Deferred Sales Trust.

2. Schedule a No-Cost Consultation With a Capital Gains Tax Solutions Trustee

Before you put your highly appreciated asset on the market, schedule a free consultation with an exclusive DST Trustee to see if the DST would be a good option. During this meeting, the Trustee will help you evaluate using the Deferred Sales Trust to sell your highly appreciated asset, hear your story, understand your financial goals, and answer any questions you may have. The minimum size deal is $1 million net proceeds and $1 million gain.

3. Meet with the DST Tax Attorney, Your Advisors, Trustee, and Estate Planning Team Financial Advisor

The main purpose of this meeting is to take a deeper look into using the Deferred Sales Trust to sell your highly appreciated asset with the following core members of the DST’s Estate Planning Team:

  • DST Tax Attorney
  • Independent Certified DST Trustee
  • Registered Investment Advisor (approved member of the Estate Planning Team)

You can also invite others to this meeting, including your:

  • CPA
  • Financial Advisor
  • Real Estate Broker
  • Business Broker
  • Independent Attorney

Collectively, the Estate Planning Team will cover the viability of using a DST for the sale of your appreciated asset, review your financial goals, establish your risk tolerance for investments, and determine the payment amounts you want to receive after the close of the DST. Assuming a DST is a good fit and you are ready to move forward, the tax attorney will create the Deferred Sales Trust and Capital Gains Tax Solutions Team will work with all other parties (escrow, attorneys, real estate agent, business broker, etc.) during the sales transaction.

4. Selling Your Asset to the DST

Upon selling your asset to the Deferred Sales Trust, the sale proceeds will be placed in the created DST Trust, and you will not recognize immediate capital gains tax since you did not take constructive or actual receipt of the cash. It’s similar to a 1031 exchange in this respect. It’s important to understand that, at this point in the transaction, you have now transferred all your rights, title, and interests in the asset to the trust. However, you will only do this if the ultimate buyer (the third party in this transaction) is ready to purchase the asset from the DST immediately.

5. You Receive an Installment Contract, Also Known as a “Promissory Note”

For the sale of your asset to the Deferred Sales Trust, Brett Swarts, your Capital Gains Tax Solutions Deferred Sales Trust Trustee, will give you a Secured Promissory Note, which lays out the payment plan. This includes what amount is owed to you, the interest you are charging the DST, the amount of payment set to pay you, and the specific dates of each payment. In other words, you have become a lender to the DST.


Upon closing, your third-party unrelated Independent Trustee manages all aspects of the DST. However, this is only as and when you authorize them. For example, upon sale of the asset you just sold to the DST, the Trustee has the funds placed in the DST’s secure bank account that requires signatures from both of you, as well as the bank officer, to open. This is like a long-term escrow account. With your approval, this will be the account from which he buys investments you authorize and will have the bank make payments to you per the terms of your installment contract.

Capital Gains Tax Solutions Case Study:
Shea Sells His Business and Builds 70+ Multifamily Units in Tennessee

Steps to Shea Using the Deferred Sales Trust

  1. Shea sold his marketing business for $2.6M. (did not qualify for a 1031 exchange)
  2. Funds were sent to the Deferred Sales Trust (DST) Bank Account, including an extra $600,000 of tax-deferred capital gains.
  3. Some of the funds were invested into the active new construction of 70+ units in Tennessee, which he is building with his partner.

Two Questions to Determine If the DST Is a Good Fit For You

1. Do you have highly appreciated assets of any kind you would like to sell, defer the tax, diversify the funds, and invest the funds into real estate or securities, all tax-deferred?

2. What would it mean to you to convert your highly appreciated asset — which may not be producing cash flow of any kind — to cash flow from passive or active real estate?

Happy investing! Want to dig in more? Check out Why You Should Consider Using the Deferred Sales Trust (DST) Now More Than Ever.

Bonus Video: The Biggest Thing to Overcome for the Deferred Sales Trust with David Sloan

About Brett Swarts:

Brett Swarts is considered one of the most well-rounded Capital Gains Tax Deferral Experts and informative speakers in the U.S. He is the Founder of Capital Gains Tax Solutions and host of the Capital Gains Tax Solutions podcast.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this blog post are provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as an offer to buy or sell any securities or to make or consider any investment or course of action.

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