Estate Attorney Abingdon, VA
If you own your home, deciding what should happen to your property will be an important element of your estate plan. Homes typically have an emotional value as well as a financial one. It may also have a prominent place in the family’s history. As a result, it may be a good strategy to include family members in the conversation when deciding how to address your home in your estate plan. For instance, if it is your assumption that your designated heir will live in the home but they do not wish to do so, you may prefer to designate a different heir in order to keep the property in the family. Alternatively, you may decide to specify that the house should be sold and the funds distributed among your heirs.
Additionally, you’ll need to speak with an experienced Abingdon, VA estate planning lawyer about estate tax obligations after your passing, relationship issues among heirs, and other potential complications before committing to a plan of action. Though you can use a will to specify to whom your assets should be distributed, a will often falls short of meeting an individual’s estate planning goals. Additional options include a qualified personal residence trust, a transfer on death, and a revocable trust. The Law Offices of Mark T. Hurt can help you to find the best estate planning tools available for the purposes of protecting your interests and addressing your home in your estate plan.
The Importance of Estate Planning
Estate planning is important for all non-dependent adults, including individuals and couples who do not consider themselves wealthy. As mentioned, a home is often valuable from an emotional as well as sentimental and financial perspective. Therefore, it’s important to make sure your estate plan considers what may be the best solution for handling ownership of the house after your passing. When discussing how your home should be addressed in your estate plan, you and our Abingdon, Virginia estate attorney will take these factors into account:
Home Ownership is Not for Everyone
A home requires constant and consistent maintenance. Not everyone is up for the challenge and not everyone can afford to pay others to do the necessary work. If the roof should need replacing at some point, will your heir be able to manage the cost? Mowing the lawn to keep it properly trimmed may be of no interest to one person, while another person may not mind it at all and in fact enjoy being outdoors. Consider whether or not the heir you have in mind will enjoy the house or if they may think of it as a burden.
Is a Family Member Already Living in the Home?
If you have a child, or another family member already living in the home, but you plan to bequeath it to someone else, what happens to the individual who is there currently? If you have one child who is living in it now, and they are not the child who will inherit the property, how will that work out?
Tax Considerations When Liquidating the Home
If the person who inherits the home decides that they do not wish to own it, they may want to sell it. However, there are seller transaction costs and real estate agent fees as well as estate tax obligations. If the state’s estate tax exemption limit is more than the value of the home, the heir may not be able to afford that state tax assessment. When planning your estate, talk to our Abingdon, VA estate attorney about these considerations as they can provide greater clarity based on the details of your actual circumstances. Note also that our experienced Abingdon, VA estate attorney will additionally take into consideration a variety of other factors when advising you, after they have learned more about your unique needs and circumstances.