Inheritance is an extremely tricky topic to deal with within the family. There is no way to romanticize that statement. It is what it is. In an ideal world, everyone would just get along. No fighting and drama involved. Unfortunately, this is often not the case.
In most cases, inheriting a house causes a rift among family members. Claiming the right to it especially when there’s no clear title is a problem that requires an immediate and proper solution. Can I sell a house I inherited? Can I rent it out? How do we split up the payables? These questions are very important and need you the help of experts to guide you along the way.
Who Decides if I Have Control Over the Property vs. Other Relatives?
The Role of an Executor
In determining the next steps after inheriting a home, it is the executor or the court’s job to help. By its very definition, an Executor is a person who sorts out your property when you die and carries out the instructions in your will.
So, who can be an executor? Anyone aged 18 and above. Most people choose their beneficiary as their executor as well. It is even allowed to have more two executors at the same time. The most common setup is having a family member and a professional act work on it together.
It is very important to choose the right executor because ultimately, he or she should be able to guide you and your family settle the issue of getting a clear title.
Can I sell a house I inherited and what are my options?
When there is no clear title, family members tend to fight over an inherited home. This is the tricky part because you must be mindful of not getting behind the mortgage. These are the different options available for you:
Option 1: Keep the home (fix it up for yourself, rent it out, or sell it on your own after making renovations)
Can you sell or rent the house you inherited on your own? Yes, you can. Given that you are able to set aside your differences, sell it or rent it out. This way, you can make as much money as you can out of it. You can even split the income from the rent and sale to each of the family members. This is the best option you can take.
Option 2: Sell Your Home As-Is for Cash
Another option is you can sell the house as is and as quickly as you can. No house means no more arguments. Quick and easy fix. Although it may not sell for top dollar, you avoid the costs of time and money on renovation.
Option 3: Buyout your sibling
If you really want the house to be under your name, you can opt to buyout your sibling. By default, you and your sibling own the house in equal shares unless stated otherwise. It is easier to do this if one of you wants nothing to do with the house. All you have to do is pay your sibling’s share in cash and transfer the deed solely in your name.
Option 4: The Bank Forecloses and You Lose the Home and Money
Worst case scenario, when the family continues to squabble, and the bank takes the home. The family gets nothing at all, and you do not want this to happen.
What happens if you and your family can’t come to an agreement?
When this happens, you might need the court to take over. Filing a lawsuit for partition can be the first step. With this, the court will order the selling of the home which will break off the co-ownership. However, you’ll realize at the end of the day that this is a far more tedious process than just selling or renting out the house in the first place.
The Transfer of Money: Do we split up the pay among the family?
Let’s say you have finally decided to sell or rent out the house, the next thing to think about is the transfer of money. How do you split the pay among the family members?
If you decide to rent it out, you can equally split up the money. Whoever manages the rental property should be given a little more of the income since he or she is exerting time and effort. On the other hand, if you decide to sell, equal shares from the income after expenses, commissions and costs.
Moreover, you must pay capital gains tax when the house is sold. The basis of the tax is determined by the value of the home on the day the original owner died. But if you sell it immediately after you inherited it, you don’t have to worry about capital gains tax.
The Best Thing You Can Do When You Inherit a Home? Don’t Fall Behind on the Mortgage!
So, if you are asking yourself “can I sell a house I inherited?” Yes, and it is the best option to take. Most people would agree that inheriting a house is more than just the luxury of getting a house. There are other factors to consider such as a possible misunderstanding within the family, what to do with the house and who really gets the money.
It is not an easy situation to be in. Fighting over property in a difficult time is not a good way to grieve. Situations like should bring families closer, not breaking them apart. It is okay to ask for help. Sometimes, you need an unbiased entity to help you see your options and give you the easy button to sell the house quickly as-is. This is where Simple House Solutions comes in.
Simple House Solutions will help you make an informed decision and lead you to the best route that you can take.