Did You Inherit A House?

Inheriting a home can be stressful, and grief over a recent death can cloud your judgment during this period of important decisions. In this post, you will find helpful information for what you should do when you inherit a home.

What’s the best thing to do when you inherit a house?

  • Breathe. You are more than likely experiencing a lot of emotions, and the last thing you want to do is to is to make decisions you may regret later.
  • Check for any outstanding bills. For example, pay all the utilities, homeowner’s insurance policy and property taxes. If you inherit a property which has a mortgage, you’ll be responsible for the monthly payments even if you don’t live there.
  • Other Expenses. If the home is paid off, there still could be major repairs to be made before it can be sold or occupied. There are also ongoing costs for property taxes, utilities, residential insurance and maintenance costs, as well as possible homeowner association fees.
  • Have a family meeting: Get together with your siblings and any other stakeholders. Have a conversation about where each beneficiary stands and what they want to happen with the house.
  • Make a decision. There are several possibilities after inheriting a house. Sell it, rent it out, or move in. If there is more than one heir, the easiest option is to sell the house. If one of the heirs wants to live in the house, another option is for that person to buy out the rest of the shares.
  • Ask for help. Regardless of which option you choose, it is likely that you’ll have to empty many items out of the house. Let the heirs have a chance to go through the house and identify any items the want to keep. The other remaining items can be sold or donated.
  • A storage unit can help. If you decide to sell the home or rent the home, consider renting a storage unit in which you can store items from the house until you are ready to sort through them.

Losing a family member can be tough, and inheriting a house from them can bring its own set of challenges. However, knowing the process and available options can make managing an inherited property much easier.

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