Planning For A Secure Future

How to handle the family home in your California estate plan

On Behalf of | Mar 2, 2023 | Estate Planning

California adults might have a difficult time navigating estate planning conversations. No one wants to think about what happens after their parents die.

While difficult, these conversations can answer many unknowns that make it easier for adult children when the time comes. One of the most common questions revolves around the family home.

Who gets the family home

Figuring out who gets the house after someone dies can be easy for some families. Maybe there’s only one child and no other relatives – in this case, the house would go immediately to the adult children even without an estate plan.

For other families, it’s a tough question. The parent remarrying or having multiple children can often lead to questions that an estate plan can answer.

Ultimately, only the homeowner can decide what happens to the family home after they’ve passed. But they can only do that if they’ve set up an estate plan.

Passing the house down

Many parents set up their estate plans so that their house will go to their children after they’ve died. This allows them to maintain control of the property while they’re alive.

Other people might sell the house to their children, with or without stipulating that they get to remain there for as long as they’d like. This not only makes things easier, but it can make it help with eligibility for programs like Medicaid.

Many parents will also put the property into trusts, to keep it out of the hands of the probate court and to avoid estate taxes. If multiple children are inheriting the home, they can decide amongst themselves what to do with it.

Some children will decide to live in the family home while others will sell it and split the profits with their family members. Whatever they decide to do, it’s important that an estate plan is set up to give them that freedom.