An interview: Author Dan Ihara, Realtor Associate, The Ihara Team — Keller Williams Honolulu

An interview: Author Dan Ihara, Realtor Associate, The Ihara Team — Keller Williams Honolulu

With your experience in working with seniors, what have you discovered about their status in terms of being prepared to age in place?

There are many questions that families have as their parents age. Many adult children have never had to provide care for a senior. When they begin, they soon find it is not an easy task. Assisting your parents as they age in place seems like a good idea until we realize how much time it takes to provide meals, and clean and maintain an additional house, along with continuing our own career and meeting life’s demands. Also, some seniors need assistance with dressing, personal hygiene or even transferring from a bed to a chair or the dinner table. Fortunately, there are home care companies that can come into the home to provide those services. At some point, many seniors are choosing a retirement community, where all of their needs can be taken care of. Many parents today do not want to burden their children and are opting to learn more about retirement communities and care homes.

What concerns do you hear expressed at your real estate workshops and what solutions are
available in Hawai‘i?

Some of the biggest questions we hear are “Where do I go if my home is not the best place for me? How much does it cost? What does life look like if I moved there?” There are many options for our kūpuna who are seeking living alternatives. Services in Hawai‘i are available to help families in transition. It starts with first identifying the next best residence. The next step is to aid them with planning and making the move. Once settled in their new home, they will need help with preparing their property for a successful sale by helping to remove personal belongings and cleaning, repairing items and staging the home. This is instrumental in their journey as the sale of their home is likely going to be used to pay for their care.

What are some options to enable parents to pass on their wealth, assets and knowledge on to their children?

Having a clear, written trust document and sharing your wishes with your children will help mitigate possible family disputes when you’re gone. If you have an investment property and would like to help create generational wealth while you’re living, there are specific strategies that can be utilized to reach those goals. This can be done with a strategic approach by executing a 1031 Exchange. A 1031 Exchange, also called a Starker Exchange or Like-Kind Exchange, is a powerful and effective tax-deferment strategy. This strategy allows an investor to “defer” paying capital gains taxes on an investment property when it is sold as long another “like-kind property” is purchased with the profit gained by the sale of the first property. To use this strategy effectively, you must exchange one property for another property of similar value. Using this process, capital gains will be avoided, at least temporarily. An investor will eventually pay taxes, but in the meantime, can trade properties without incurring a sudden tax obligation. (Due to the COVID pandemic, the IRS is allowing anyone with a 180-day exchange period deadline between April 1 and July 15 an automatic extension to July 15.)

Why is Generations Magazine so important to our kupuna community?

Generations Magazine is the only real resource for our kūpuna in Hawai‘i.  Time and time again, we have heard from our seniors that learning how to adjust during this phase of life is valuable. The articles and lessons in the magazine have become a priceless resource for our community. Please keep it up!