Identification of Capital Gains and Reserves.
In early 2019, Cyndey Walters received a $2 million settlement as a result of suffering serious injuries in an accident on a construction site. As a result, she immediately quit her job as a plumber for a construction company and began to search for rundown houses in her neighbour- hood that she could buy at a low price. Her objective was to bring her houses up to code (i.e., in accordance with building regulations) and then rent them to individuals who could not afford adequate housing. Cyndey charged just enough rent to cover the expenses of each house. By March 2020, she owned five houses that were rented to five families. She continued working part time as a plumber while she took courses toward a degree in social work. Cyndey came from a large family, many members of which were involved in construction. She called on her family for help when her tenants needed services, and they gave her a family dis- count for their services. In June 2021, she learned that the owner of two low-rise apartment buildings in the neighbour- hood had died. They were vacant and in very poor condition. The executor of the estate was receptive for a quick sale. Cyndey offered $250,000 cash for the two buildings and the large parking lot between them. The offer was accepted. As this was a much larger project than the single family homes she had been working on, she enlisted the aid of her father, an experienced contractor. He agreed to be the general contractor for the project. In August 2021, a major software company announced it was going to move its Canadian head- quarters into the neighbourhood within two years. In September 2021, Cyndey received an unsolicited offer of $1.5 million for her property. The purchaser intends to construct a luxury condo building to house the newly hired workers. The offer requires Cyndey to take back a $1 million first mortgage on the property. The mortgage will be repaid in four annual instalments of $250,000 each, beginning in 2022. The cash down payment would be $500,000. In November 2021, Cyndey begins to receive unsolicited cash offers for her rental houses. The offers are all for more than double what she paid. Required: Cyndey has sought your advice about the income tax treatment of the sale of the two apartment buildings and parking lot. Provide the necessary advice, including the calculation of the minimum amount of capital gains that would be required to be included in Cyndey’s net income for the year of sale on the assumption that the properties acquired are capital property. CANADIAN TAX