Trying to find Out the original cost of an asset

So this is a weird request but one of my clients died this year and he had two rental properties that he had been taking CCA for years before i ever started to do his and his wife returns. Of course the property was sold and now we are trying to figure out what the Cost at the beginning would be. One of the sons decided when clearing out the home to toss all the old tax returns he had done by paper. Is a call to CRA the only way we will be able to get that information? another problem is we aren’t even sure when it was purchased but thinking in the 70’s.

I assume the family has a lawyer. If so, they could have the lawyer search the title to find out when the properties were purchased and at what prices. Finding prior year capital improvements might be difficult as well as the allocation of the original price between land and building. I’m not sure CRA could provide the CCA schedules for those prior years. You may want to check with CRA to see if a T664 election was filed on the taxpayer’s 1994 tax return. You should be able to get a copy of that election from CRA but be patient.

thanks for your reply. I’m not sure if they have a lawyer but i will ask. I was hoping i didn’t have to call CRA right now the weight time is 1 hour 25 mins. I’ll try tomorrow morning

First step: 1) Do you have any authority to do anything whatsoever for this new client (ie Estate)?

*Need to obtain copy of the Will
*Need to verify identity of person named in the Will as Executor
*Need to clarify if Will has been probated
*Need to obtain SIGNED ENGAGEMENT from the AUTHORIZED Executor

If the Executor is someone other that the doozy who threw out the deceased’s possessions, the Executor might need to incur whatever costs are needed to recover the situation, and sue that doozy son for any additional costs

The EXECUTOR can, by himself or with assistance of hired agent/lawyer, visit the CIty Archives and search even ancient property data.

There will have also been certain trigger points (Valuation day, real estate elections, change of use, etc)

Since this will likely be a lot of specialized work, the person undertaking this needs to ensure proper Engagement letter terms with the Legal representative of the Estate, as all the Assets are now owned by the Estate (Trust). (And Asset ownership/Property titles etc will need to be examined).

It is likely that the T1 final will show a very large tax liability (High taxable income because of recapture), and the Executor will likely have to use the proceeds of sale of at least one of the properties to pay CRA, long before any distributions to beneficiaries can be considered (Assuming not passing to surviving spouse etc). In that regard, the Accountant hired by the Estate will need to be able to advise on potential time limits on reporting of realization of potential loss-carry-backs etc from the Estate T3 etc…

Your older and/or permanent working papers might have some opening balances for the properties?

Joe, well that maybe useful information on someone who needs it but all I’m looking for is the easiest way to get the cost when they started using CAA. I was 7 when they pruchased the property and only started doing them as a client maybe 4 years ago so my records only have what i was given by them

As with most things:

“Begin at the beginning, go on until you reach the end, and then stop”

I have, on rare occasion, had success getting T664 info from CRA. Not for a few years now, but it should be in their “permanent files” if purchased prior to v-day. If not, good luck.

Another source might be to go to Land Titles and pull title going back as far as you can. In theory, they should have the value it transferred for.

A couple couldn’t find their copies so I requested copies from CRA. They only had one of the two T664s. Several months later, they found their old returns so I was able to update both (which mirrored each other as all were joint.)

Yes, @helga_spence, I have had to request T664’s from CRA in the past, too. It took a while to come but they were available. I wonder, though, how long CRA will maintain these records. It’s really not CRA’s responsibility but it is well-appreciated.