Navigating the complex waters of real estate investing necessitates more than just an eye for profitable properties. Understanding the nuances of investment structures is equally crucial, especially when minimizing tax burdens and maximizing returns. From the high skyscrapers of urban centers to the sprawling landscapes of suburban developments, real estate offers a diverse array of investment opportunities.

This article will share some tax-efficient real estate investment strategies, delving into alternative structures such as REITs, limited partnerships, DSTs, the role of Delaware Statutory Trust companies, and more. By examining these innovative approaches, the aim is to provide investors with the knowledge and insights they need to make informed decisions and achieve their financial goals in the dynamic domain of real estate investing.

Real Estate Investment Trusts

REITs finance income-generating real estate across a range of property sectors. REITs offer a tax-efficient way to invest in real estate without directly owning properties. By law, REITs must distribute at least 90% of their income as dividends, thereby minimizing corporate-level taxation.

Limited Partnerships

Another famous investment structure is the limited partnership (LP). In an LP, there are two types of partners: general partners who manage the investment and limited partners who provide capital but have minimal involvement in management. Limited partners enjoy limited liability and pass-through taxation, meaning profits and losses flow through to their tax returns. This structure can be particularly advantageous for real estate investments, allowing investors to offset passive losses against other passive income.

Delaware Statutory Trusts (DSTs)

Delaware Statutory Trusts (DSTs) are pivotal in tax-efficient real estate investing, particularly in 1031 exchanges. These exchanges enable investors to defer capital gains taxes on the sale of investment properties by reinvesting in like-kind properties, a strategy highly valued for its ability to preserve capital and facilitate portfolio growth. Within this framework, DSTs emerge as a strategic vehicle for investors seeking to capitalize on the benefits of 1031 exchanges.


DSTs allow investors to purchase beneficial interests in real estate properties managed by a trustee. This unique ownership structure provides investors with fractional ownership of institutional-grade properties, typically far beyond what individual investors could access. Moreover, DSTs offer investors a passive investment approach, relieving them of the burdens of property management and day-to-day operations.

Delaware Statutory Trust companies, acting as trustees, play a crucial role in administering DST investments. These companies specialize in managing the intricacies of DST properties, from overseeing property maintenance to distributing rental income to investors. By entrusting the management responsibilities to experienced professionals, investors can enjoy the benefits of real estate ownership without the associated headaches.

Tenancy-in-Common (TIC) Ownership

TIC ownership allows multiple investors to own fractional interests in a property. Each investor holds a separate, undivided interest in the property, which can be freely transferred or sold. Like DSTs, TIC ownership can facilitate 1031 exchanges, providing investors with tax-deferred options for reallocating their real estate investments without triggering immediate tax consequences.

1031 Exchanges

Lastly, it’s time to revisit the tried-and-true strategy of 1031 exchanges. Under Section 1031 of the Internal Revenue Code, investors can defer capital gains taxes on the sale of investment properties by reinvesting the proceeds into like-kind properties. This powerful tax-deferral strategy allows investors to preserve capital and increase their real estate holdings over time without incurring immediate tax liabilities.


Tax-efficient investment strategies are crucial in maximizing returns and preserving capital in real estate investing. By leveraging alternative investment structures such as REITs, limited partnerships, DSTs, TIC ownership, Qualified Opportunity Zones, and 1031 exchanges, investors can mitigate tax liabilities, diversify their portfolios, and unlock new opportunities for growth and wealth accumulation in the dynamic real estate sphere. Whether you’re a seasoned investor or just getting started, exploring these alternative structures could be the key to achieving your financial goals in real estate.