If you’re doing your estate planning, the family home can get tricky. On one hand, this can certainly be a sentimental item. It may be the same home where all of your children grew up. There are a lot of family connections there and memories within the home.
At the same time, your home is a very expensive asset. A lot of people do not own anything that is worth more. This also means that you need to make sure that you take the right steps to approach this properly for your family. You have many different options, but let’s look at three of them below.
Selling the home
Your first option is to sell the house and then put the money into your estate plan. Some people will sell well in advance and then rent a house to live in during the final years of their life. This is often done by those who know that their children don’t actually want the house. Simply splitting up the money and leaving them all equal amounts is seen as a hassle-free way to address this asset while still giving the heirs the value of the house.
Another option is to leave the house to multiple people as co-owners. If you have multiple children who still live in the area, they may all want to take over. This is sometimes done with vacation properties or second homes, as well. This does raise a lot of complicated questions about who has to pay property taxes and other costs, but it’s still a way for your entire family to get to keep the home that means so much to them.
Leave it to one person
Finally, you do have the option to leave your home to one of your heirs. This could be done if they would like to move in and live there with their family – your grandchildren – but the other heirs are not interested. However, if you still want to leave equal bequests to all of your heirs, this does mean that you’ll need to figure out the value of the house so that you can leave other assets to everyone else.
No matter what you can choose, it can get complicated and it’s important to get it right. Be sure you know exactly what steps to take as you create this plan.