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3 ways to address a primary residence in an estate plan

Posted by Lidia Law Firm, P.C. | Feb 27, 2024 | 0 Comments

Estate planning requires an awareness of one's finances and careful consideration of personal relationships. The testator putting together the plan generally needs to address the financial and legal vulnerabilities of their dependent family members while also thinking about the legacy that they leave.

For many successful adults in Oklahoma, the home that they live in is their most valuable asset. They may have spent years paying off their mortgage and improving the property to make it both comfortable and valuable. Their home can have a major impact on their legacy as one of their most valuable resources. The following are some of the ways for people to address the value of their primary residence in their estate plan.

Leave the house to one family member

Often, testators have a specific beneficiary in mind who they would like to inherit their home. They can achieve that goal through a number of different means. Sometimes, people include their houses in their wills by granting their real property to a specific beneficiary. Other times, people may draft special deeds to arrange for the transfer of the home. Taxes and other challenges may influence the best solution when leaving a residence to a specific beneficiary.

Arrange for the sale of the property

Sometimes, people recognize that no one in their family likely wants to receive the home itself. Perhaps all of someone's children have already purchased their own home, for example. Testators sometimes leave instructions to sell the home where they lived and distribute the proceeds among certain beneficiaries. Such arrangements may include a clause extending the right of first refusal to any beneficiaries who would like to buy the home from the estate.

Create a more nuanced solution

Many testators have complicated family situations. Perhaps they remarried later in life, but they have children from their first marriage. They might want to create a trust that allows their spouse to remain in the marital home. That way, their spouse has housing, but their children can inherit the house when they remarry or die. A trust could also help if someone has a child with special needs who would be most comfortable remaining in the home.

Making a point of creating custom arrangements for real property can benefit those who want estate plans that achieve their legacy goals in enforceable and thoughtful ways.

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