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Why Every Homeowner Needs an Estate Plan

The Law Office of Libby Banks > Estate Planning  > Why Every Homeowner Needs an Estate Plan

Why Every Homeowner Needs an Estate Plan

By Libby Banks, the Law Office of Libby Banks, PLLC

Some people think they don’t need an estate plan, claiming that they don’t have an estate. Your estate is simply all that you own. When you buy a home, it is part of your estate. You need to have a plan to take care of this important asset!

First, we must plan for your incapacity. What will happen to your home if you are unable to handle your finances? Who will pay your mortgage, keep the electricity on and keep things running? Who will sign to sell the home if you need the money from a sale? With a proper estate plan, you appoint someone who will have the power to take care of your home, sell it if needed, and take care of you.

Second, what will happen to your home when you die? Without a proper estate plan, it might not go to who you want to have it. If you want your spouse to have your home, let’s plan for that. But what about after your spouse dies? If you have children from a previous marriage and want them to get some share, you have to have a written plan for that to happen. Without an estate plan, if you pass away first, it’s up to your spouse to decide where the proceeds go. If your spouse doesn’t have an estate plan, the law says that the house or the proceeds goes to his or her heirs, whoever that may be – but it isn’t going to your children without a written plan.

For a single person with more than one child, it is important to have a Will or Trust stating who will handle the estate. Without that, all three children have an equal right to serve as personal representative of your estate. If they all agree on who should serve, no problem. But if there is any disagreement, it could cause delays in getting control over your affairs, meaning your mortgage may go unpaid, and the utilities could be shut off before anyone has the standing to take over and maintain the home.

An estate plan is a necessity for all homeowners! My office offers a free consultation to discuss what kind of estate plan is right for you. Call us at 602-375-6752.

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