When Family Law Issues Involve Real Estate
Winter Vol. V
Inheriting a House: What Your Client Needs To Know
AUG 2017 Note From the Editor Dear Reader,
Another year and another round of changes are coming, but we
If a loved one has died and you find yourself inheriting their property, you’re likely experiencing a deluge of mixed emotions. Along with grief may come gratitude or even elation at your good fortune — and possibly a healthy dose of confusion and indecision. Should you keep the house for yourself or as a rental property? Should you sell it? Can you sell it? including your current life situation, whether you are a sole heir or need to split the property with others, and the tax implications of any move you make. With so much to think about, you definitely want professional real estate advice — preferably from a specialist with experience in this niche. Tax Consequences If your loved one originally bought their home on the cheap but it’s now worth much more, there are “stepped up” taxes to consider. If you keep the house, you’ll be taxed at the new market rate, which could take a big bite out of your inheritance, and there are certain advantages to selling and writing off the cost of the sale. Likewise, estate taxes on large estates worth over $5 million should be taken into account. Be sure to consult with a tax professional to understand the consequences of your decision about the property. Different Selling Strategies If you need to sell an inherited house, there’s more than one way to accomplish this, and an experienced Realtor is crucial for getting the job done the way you want to. If you’re looking for a quick sale, a real estate agent familiar with the local market and prospective investors can get the property off your hands fast, without any updating. If you prefer to get top dollar, that Realtor will advise you on the right updates and repairs to make and the best time to put the home on the market for the general public. The answers to these questions are highly personal and will depend on many factors,
will continue to keep you informed of trends as they pertain to probate and divorce issues. We are looking forward to a new year filled with more work and opportunities from you. Have a happy and healthy New Year.
And if your goals are somewhere in between? Trust a specialist in inherited real estate to tailor a plan for your needs. HomesThat NeedWork It’s very common for inherited homes to need major updating to appeal to today’s savvy buyers. This is especially true if your loved one was older and had lived in the home for many years. While a good Realtor will explain which updates are most useful in selling the house, a great estate Realtor recognizes that not all families have enough money left to make these investments before selling. When you talk to an agent with years of experience in estate sales, you’ll get the guidance you need to weigh the pros and cons of an as-is sale. Not All Realtors Are the Same All licensed real estate agents are qualified to sell a home, but there are many areas of specialty within the real estate world. To make informed choices about inherited property and to do the right thing by your family and other beneficiaries, choose to work with a real estate consultant who specializes in inherited property and estate sales. There’s simply no substitute for the know- how that comes from years of experience in this complex area, and working with a specialist will give you the peace of mind that you deserve in a difficult time.
Yours truly, –Marc Cormier Editor/Realtor
CALL (703) 445-3550 or (301) 660-6272 ext. 700
For more information (301) 660-6272 | Cormier64@gmail.com | Serving MD, DC, & VA Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices | PenFedRealty.com | 1
Proper Insurance Coverage Is Your Responsibility
Give your client a free book! Email us at Marc.Cormier@PenFedRealty.com and we’ll take care of the rest!
Going through a divorce is a tough time for both parties. It leaves so many questions about what to do with the house. I wrote this book to help couples in this situation and guide them on the best ways to deal with their house. You hear so many stories about fighting, problems, and unfair distributions. Navigate a Divorced Home Situation
Anyone who has a property insured has a fiduciary responsibility to make sure the property is insured correctly. For example, if the property is vacant, or if it is rented out to someone else, the insurance requirements will be different from the standard requirements for homeowners insurance. Generally, leaving a property vacant for a few days is not a problem, but if the property is going to sit empty for more than 30 days, most insurance companies expect the owner to let them know the property’s status. They can then cover the home for the real risks it has, which are somewhat different when the property is empty or rented out versus when it is used as a permanent home. Sometimes this step is missed, and that happens when there is a trustee or personal representative taking care of an estate. They can forget to do this or not realize it needs to be done. Then, if there is a fire, someone gets hurt on the property, or there is another kind of issue that arises, the owner may be liable. The insurance company may also refuse to pay, because the property was not correctly insured. That can lead to serious problems for a homeowner or for the estate of a person who has passed away and left their home to be settled. For example, when a person dies and they were the only one who owned their home, they may will it to someone else. The deed to the house will need to go through probate, and during that time, the house is empty. If there is a fire during the period in which the house still belongs to the previous owner but is vacant, the insurance company can deny the claim and refuse to pay. This can be devastating for the estate, but fortunately, it is easily avoided by getting the proper coverage for the home.
This will answer all those questions and more. It covers the implications of going to court over the house, dealing with uncooperative spouses, and everything else to get you through this difficult time. Don’t let a situation in which you want to sell your home quickly or cash out with your spouse as fast as possible cost you thousands of dollars. Get your free copy of the book now!
Sell Your Inherited Home and Navigate the Process
Inheriting a home from a loved one who passed away can be a very difficult time. Unfortunately, you’ll likely be forced to make a decision about what to do with the estate and maybe make that decision with other family members. That’s why I wrote this book — to guide you through this process that can be tough on entire families. I break down the legal aspects, the best strategies, prepping the home , and even dealing with uncooperative family members.
Get a free copy, and be prepared to make the right choices after the loss of a loved one.
The materials in our newsletter are for informational purposes only and do not convey legal advice.
2 | Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices | PenFedRealty.com For more information (301) 660-6272 | Cormier64@gmail.com | Serving MD, DC, & VAPage 1 Page 2
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