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Ties to the Land: Relationships and Tax Breaks
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As Erv Wiens gets ready to travel from Sherwood Park, Alta., to St. George, Utah, to participate in the Seniors’ Slow Pitch competition at the Huntsman World Senior Games, he states his philosophy on staying fit and on stewardship: use it or lose it.

“We don’t go to the Seventh-day Adventist Church, but we are church-going people,” said Erv, who, along with his wife, Lorraine, recently donated a valuable piece of land to the Ryley, Alta., congregation. “A guy is getting toward retirement and doesn’t need everything he’s accumulated. I talked to my lawyer about winding down, and my lawyer suggested contacting the church.”

The suggestion of a gift of land made sense to Erv. He’d gone to Ryley High School with some of the church’s members, and the land is next to the Adventist church.

To establish the value of the donation, an appraisal was required. “I didn’t think it would appraise at what it did,” said Erv, “but that was OK; it helped on the tax end.”  What he can’t use this year in terms of his tax deduction Erv can carry forward and use against his income for up to five years.

Leslee Desjardins, a member of the Ryley church, volunteered her expertise as a land titles examiner to transfer the title. The transition was seamless, and Erv will glide more lightly around the bases knowing he’s done something good not only for himself but also for God and his friends.
This donor story first appeared in the November 2012 issue of The Canadian Adventist Messenger magazine.
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