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5 Critical Steps To Take After Inheriting A Property

Signing inheritance paperwork
Here's what you need to do after you inherit property.

Inheriting a property can be exciting; however, it can also be overwhelming, especially if you’ve

never owned a home before.

It’s easy to make mistakes after inheriting a property. This guide will help you get it right and make the most out of your inheritance.

Establish Legal Ownership and Assess Outstanding Liabilities

Establishing ownership is perhaps the most critical step of all. As such, it should be your priority.

Just because you found that the property went to you in the will doesn’t mean that you automatically have full ownership.

You’ll need to have your name recorded with your local government as the official property owner. Once you’ve established legal ownership, you’re ready to start taking the next steps.

Remember, if you skip this step and start trying to sell or make alterations to the property before establishing legal ownership, it could be unpleasant.

Don’t start spending money on renovations right away. If you try to sell the place after making repairs without establishing ownership, you could lose all of the money you sunk into the upgrades.

There is one thing you should look into before going through the motions to establish legal ownership. Any time you inherit a property, you should make it your business to find out if it comes with any outstanding liabilities attached to it, such as a never fully repaid mortgage.

Unless the original owner took out a home loan insurance policy, you could get stuck with the delightful responsibility of paying off the remaining balance on the mortgage.

Decide if you Want to Keep the Property or Sell it

After you inherit a property and establish legal ownership, you’re going to have a big decision to make.

Do you want to keep the property and perhaps pass it down to your children or grandchildren, or would you rather sell the place?

Preferences aside, there’s another question you’ll have to ask yourself before moving forward. Can you afford to keep the property?

If you’re already up to your neck in mortgage payments on your own house or have other obligations, keeping the property you inherited might not be an option.

For those of you who simply can’t afford to hold on to inherited property, your focus should be on selling it.

On the other hand, if you want to keep it and can afford to do so, that’s great too, so long as you have a solid plan. Whichever route you choose, the rest of these steps will still apply.

Have the Property Appraised

Whether you’re going to sell the property you inherited or not, you should make an effort to get it appraised. Having an idea of the property’s value will help you make better decisions.

The property could be considerably more or less than what you would expect, which is why it’s ideal to get an appraisal.

Once you have an appraisal in hand, you’ll know just how much you can make off of the property should you choose to sell it.

Fix it Up

Unless the property you inherited is brand new, you’re probably going to have to do some repairs. Strap on a tool belt or call a contractor because the sooner you start tackling those repairs, the less money it’ll cost you in the long run.

Although you’ll almost certainly have some repairs to do, you don’t want to sink too much money into renovations.

A good rule of thumb is to have anything that would concern a home inspector fixed up and then have some light cosmetic work done to freshen the place up a bit.

As long as the property looks nice and can pass a home inspection, you’re golden.

Have a Will Drawn up if You Don’t Have One Already

Although entertaining the possibility that you might kick the bucket shortly after inheriting property is a bummer, you have to be practical, which means you’ll need a will.

Even if you already have one drawn up, you’ll need to make sure that it has provisions for what will happen to the property you just inherited should anything untoward happen to you.

Would You Prefer To Sell The Property?

As we mentioned earlier, inheriting property may be more of a burden than a benefit. If that’s the case, it may be in your best interest to sell to an iBuyer like Contenza Properties.

We can make you an offer to purchase your property quickly and in its as-is condition.

We’ll never ask you to do any repairs, pay any fees, or clean up the property to help keep things simple for you.

Contact Contenza Properties today using our simple online form and see how much we can offer you.


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