Received Inherited Property Documents? Here's What to Do Next
Most people are under the impression that inheriting property is a simple and easy process. While the rewards can be great, the process can be a bit more complicated than you anticipated because the property must be modified to name you as the new owner. Depending on the circumstances, the process may take months to complete.
If you’ve inherited property documents, you may be wondering what to do next. In many cases, a representative from the probate court or the will’s executor will issue a deed with your name on it.
Check to Ensure that You Can Inherit
The first thing you need to do is check to make sure that you can actually inherit the property. The best way to do this is to find out if the property was jointly owned when the deceased died. If the property was jointly owned, the other owner would have full rights to the property.
Prove Order of Succession
If the property was jointly owned at the time of the decedent's death, you’ll need to prove order of succession in order to inherit. Obtain death certificates for both owners and compare dates. If the person you stand to inherit from died first, the property will revert to the other owner. If he or she passed away second, the process of transferring ownership becomes much easier. Of course, if the joint owner is still living, you will likely not have any rights to inherit the property.
Have a New Deed Drafted
A new deed will need to be drafted to replace the current one that’s on file. If the property was left to you in a will, you’ll need to have the executor’s deed. If there was no will and the property was granted to you by the court, you’ll need to have the administrator’s deed.
In either case, the deed must include a legal description of the property and it must cite you as the new owner. If you are drafting a deed based on an executor’s deed, you will also need to provide: information that shows the executor was authorized to deed you the property, the name of the previous owner, and confirmation that the will has already gone through probate.
If you are drafting a deed based on an administrative deed, you must ensure that the deed is drawn up in accordance to state law. Once the deed is drafted, all you have to do is sign on the dotted line in the presence of a notary. Either the court administrator or the executor of the will must also sign in the presence of a notary.
Once you’ve legally gained ownership of the property, you may need to pay state, federal and/or local estate taxes if the value of the property is higher than the threshold. Not all states have an estate tax, but federal estate taxes are imposed on properties worth $3.5 million or more, and tax rates begin at 45%.
Unfortunately, people who inherit high net worth estates often wind up having to sell the property just to pay the estate taxes.
Selling the Property
If you decide that selling the property is the best option, you will likely need to pay a capital gains tax on the difference between your basis and the proceeds from the sale. If the property is used as a personal residence and you can meet certain requirements, you may not have to pay capital gains tax on the first $500,000 if you’re married and $250,000 if you’re single.
When deciding whether to sell, you’ll need to keep in mind the condition of the home, the current going rate for similar properties and the costs involved with upgrading the home if necessary. The costs associated with selling the home (i.e. realtor fees) will need to be considered as well. Most realtors charge a commission of 6%.
If selling isn’t as attractive as you’d hoped it would be, you may consider renting the property through a long-term lease or as a vacation getaway.
Understand the Terms of the Home’s Mortgage
Another matter that can complicate the inheritance of property is the mortgage on the home. Yes, the previous owner is now deceased, but the mortgage must be paid.
Many mortgage companies view death as a trigger for immediate loan repayment. In this case, you will either need to obtain a separate mortgage to cover the cost of the remaining loan, or sell the property. If the mortgage included provisions for survivorship through a deed or a trust, then the mortgage would remain outstanding and payments could continue as normal. In this case, you will need to consider whether you can afford the monthly payments attached to the home.
Apply for Mutation of Property Title
If you decide to hang onto the property, you will need to apply for mutation of property title. This process is done to record the transfer of the title from the previous owner (the deceased) to you (the heir), and is primarily for the purpose of property tax payments. It may also be needed for the transference of utility connections. The mutation process varies from state to state as does the document requirements and fees that need to be paid.
Dealing with Rental Properties
If the property you inherit is currently being rented out to tenants, you will be obliged to adhere to the lease agreement between the lessor and the lessee (the deceased). And if there are any disputes or litigations pertaining to the property, you will become a part of that as well.
There are benefits to signing a new lease agreement once the current lease expires. If you were not planning on moving into the home, you can earn income while the home continues to appreciate in value. With that said, you’ll need to consider the responsibilities that come along with renting and managing a property. If you’re willing to take on those responsibilities, hanging onto the home and continuing to rent it out may be a smart option.
LandCentury.com specializes in selling wholesale real estate at the lowest prices. We believe that everyone should have the right and the opportunity to get a great deal on investment property All you have to do to get the property you’ve always wanted is follow these simple steps:
Step 1: Find the Perfect Property
Use LandCentury.com’s powerful network of real estate listings to find the property of your dreams. We have everything from move-in ready investment properties and cheap houses to rural land, buildable lots, and fixer-uppers. No matter what type of real estate you’re looking for, you can find it at LandCentury.com
Step 2: Click the Buy Button
This will start the purchase process. As one of America’s top online property listing sites, we leverage our unique business model of submitting an online payment to hold the listing to make transactions straightforward and secure. Our purchase process is designed for simplicity and security. Once you click the buy button, you will:
Use our secure site to submit your processing fee. We make every effort to protect your privacy. That’s one of the reasons why we offer a 24-hour money back guarantee on your processing fee, so you can feel confident in your transaction.
The seller will contact you within the next 24 hours procced to the next step and get the necessary info to prepare the contract.
Buyer Transaction & Privacy Protection
LandCentury.com stands behind our buyers, and we want you to know that your hard earned money is safe when doing business through us. That’s why we have a number of features to help protect buyers, including:
Symantec Secure Site SSL certificate, providing a $1,500,000 warranty on every transaction
Secure encryption and data protection
24 hour money back guarantee on processing fees
2 separate legal offices across the country to help you with any problems you encounter, anytime
Seller ratings so you can see what other people have to say about their experience with your seller
Still Have Questions?
We’d love to answer them. Check out our Help Center page or call us at 1-888-LAND-WEB (526-3932)
Our highly specialized support team is ready to find a solution to your problem. A people first policy insures that a team member will always be available to speak with you personally.
Symantec SSL Certificate
Symantec is a global leader in providing security, information management solutions to help our customers – from consumers and small businesses to the largest global organizations – secure and manage their information against more risks at more points, more completely and efficiently than any other company. Our company’s unique focus is to eliminate risks to information, technology and processes independent of the device, platform, interaction or location.
This website can secure your private information using a SSL Certificate. Information exchanged with any address beginning with https is encrypted using SSL before transmission. LandCentury.Com LLC has been verified as the owner or operator of the website located at www.LandCentury.com. Official records confirm LandCentury.Com LLC as a valid business.
Better Business Bureau
For more than 100 years, Better Business Bureau has been helping people find businesses, brands and charities they can trust. In 2015, people turned to BBB more than 172 million times for BBB Business Reviews on more than 5.3 million businesses and Charity Reports on 11,000 charities, all available for free at www.bbb.org. The Council of Better Business Bureaus is the umbrella organization for the local, independent BBBs in the United States, Canada and Mexico, as well as home to its national and international programs on dispute resolution, advertising review, and industry self-regulation.
BBB has determined that LandCentury.Com, LLC meets BBB accreditation standards, which include a commitment to make a good faith effort to resolve any consumer complaints. BBB Accredited Businesses pay a fee for accreditation review/monitoring and for support of BBB services to the public. BBB accreditation does not mean that the business’ products or services have been evaluated or endorsed by BBB, or that BBB has made a determination as to the business’ product quality or competency in performing services.
Web Site Anti-Malware Scan
GeoTrust is the world’s second largest digital certificate provider. More than 100,000 customers in over 150 countries trust GeoTrust to secure online transactions and conduct business over the Internet. Our range of digital certificate and trust products enable organizations of all sizes to maximize the security of their digital transactions cost-effectively.
The GeoTrust Web Site Anti-Malware Scan includes a daily malware scan to detect malware and alert you with detailed information to respond quickly to the attack. What happens if malware is detected on this web site? If malware is discovered, the GeoTrust Web Site Anti-Malware Seal no longer displays. When the scan confirms that all instances of malware are removed, the seal displays again.
If you feel that you have been a victim of real estate fraud, there are many resources available for you as the victim. Your first step is to contact the local District Attorney’s office and report the incident. Our office will stand by you and provide any relevant information to support your claim. Here are additional agencies that can assist you and provide more resources: