Property may seem like a great inheritance at first, but in some instances it can quickly become complicated. One of the reasons for this has to do with the title issues that may arise after the death of your loved one.
In order to avoid title issues from day one it is important to know who exactly owns the property, and, in the case of multiple owners, handle the details of caring for a property in a fair and realistic manner.
Obviously, before you can take any action with an inherited property, you must establish the ownership. Who owns the property comes down to several factors, and it is essential to reveal any title issues early on to avoid real problems in the future.
With a Will
If the deceased created a will, this should clearly state who owns the property. This is typically a relative such as a son or daughter, but a will provides the freedom for the owner to bestow his or her property on whomever they wish. A will simplifies the process, and once the will is probated, the property is passed on to the right person.
With a Family Tree
In some cases there isn’t a will. Should this occur, you will want to establish ownership by building an accurate family tree. This must include all siblings who have a claim to the property. It is essential that all siblings are accounted for in order to avoid any title issues later down the line.
How do I Sell a House in Probate?
Selling an inherited house in Texas often means dealing with the legal process known as probate. It is complex and can be confusing or even intimidating if you’re not already familiar with it. To help, we’ve created The Ultimate Guide to Texas Probate, to answer many of the most common questions about estate settlement.
Handling Multiple Owners
Co-ownership is not always an ideal arrangement for all parties involved. While some families may be able to peaceably agree on what to do with the property, more often than not there are disputes on what to do with an inherited property.
If you find yourself in a situation where you are dealing with multiple owners, it is typically best to sell as soon as possible. But no matter what decision is reached, it is important to ask a few questions:
- What procedure will be followed with the sale?
- How will pricing and price reductions be decided?
- Does one of the owners have the right to stop the sale by buying out the other owners?
- How are the property expenses going to be divided?
- How are decisions about updates and other changes to the property going to be made?
This is just the beginning of trying to peaceably handle multiple owners. It is important to ask questions and set rules early on to avoid bad habits and miscommunications down the line.
It is also usually best that either the entire property is sold, or that one of the owners buys out the others, unless a reasonable arrangement can be made for the property to be shared equally, which is typically a rare case.
Titles issues on an inherited property can already be difficult, but with the recent loss of a loved one it can be a devastating issue to face. Establishing the right ownership and making a decision about the property quickly is important to avoid unnecessary expense and problems with the property down the line.