Answer: There are various reasons to own real estate in a revocable trust. The most common reason: to avoid probate. Let’s face it. We are all going to pass away, at some point. Without a trust, our children must start a lengthy, expensive and frustrating legal process to take over our assets.
For certain financial assets (life insurance, investment or bank accounts), the probate process can be eliminated by completing a “beneficiary designation form”. They can save our children thousands of dollars, a year of delay and countless frustrations. Most folks were introduced to these forms, when they setup their 401k or IRA accounts. But what about real estate?
This is why your friends use revocable trusts for their homes. At minimum, such a trust acts like a beneficiary designation form for your deed. A trust allows your children to take over ownership and control immediately upon your passing. No probate needed. If they desire, my kids can visit the realtor’s office on the way home from my funeral.
Attorney James Haroutunian practices real estate law, estate planning and probate at 630 Boston Road, Billerica, MA. He gladly invites questions at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 978-671-0711.