Appreciation is the value that assets (property, real estate, cars, investments, etc.) gain over a period of time. Market value, market conditions and demand can all affect the appreciation of an asset. Appreciation is not an increase in value from inflation.
When you inherit property and later sell it, you need to calculate capital gains taxes, not estate taxes. Estate taxes are due on estates of a certain value and if the estate's value is less than the government standard, no taxes are due. To figure exactly how much you owe in terms of capital gains taxes, consult with a tax preparer or accountant.
A home buyer is considering stretching his pocket book and buying a new construction home in hopes that it will result in a big profit in a few years. Buying a home and hoping it appreciates is a risky move without a lot of wiggle room. The years of buying a home and having it appreciate quickly are over, for now.
Investing in real estate is not without risks. Buyers must beware when purchasing investment property -- there's no guarantee your real estate will increase in value. There's no one to blame when investment property doesn't appreciate the way you might have hoped.
When you're getting close to retirement you may decide to downsize to a smaller home. What's the best mortgage loan to get for your new home? How much money you put down and the amount of mortgage loan that you get depends in part on the interest rates at the time. In addition, it's a good idea to fully fund your 401(k) plan until you retire.
With real estate investments, you need to evaluate your options and time the sales appropriately to make the most of your investments. Will the property continue to appreciate? What do you want to do with the money? Will you ever make the investment property your primary residence?
Investment property may qualify for certain tax exemptions, but it must follow strict requirements. In general, if you live in a property for two out of the prior five years (the order of when you've lived there is not important), and the property was your primary residence for two years, you are entitled to exclude $250,000 of the gain in the sale of the home from any taxes. Contact a tax account for more information.