Estate Planning for Property Owners

What do property owners have to consider when engaging in estate planning?

Estate planning, desirable for almost everyone, is absolutely necessary for homeowners who co-own property.  They must be prepared for the eventuality of the death of a spouse, family member, friend or colleague with whom they share ownership. Clearly, it will be necessary to cover any existing mortgage, as well as other property expenses, in the event that one of the borrowers dies. Many serious questions will have to be considered, such as:

• Is there enough remaining available income to cover mortgage payments?
• Is it necessary to negotiate a new mortgage if the home is inherited?
• Will the property be reassessed?
• How can heirs avoid Internal Revenue Service probate taxes?
• Does the remaining owner meet one of the exemptions preventing a lender from calling a mortgage due?
• How can the need to liquidate assets to pay for long-term care be avoided?

Such important questions can be easily answered by wills and trust attorneys experienced in the intricacies of estate planning law. Not only is it important that homeowners become familiar with the need to establish healthcare directives, revocable living trusts, durable power of attorney, and last will and testaments, but that these clients employ experienced attorneys to help them set up legally binding arrangements in order to protect themselves, their property and their loved ones. 

It is risky, even foolish, for homeowners not to retain legal counsel in situations that require estate planning. Such lack of foresight can leave clients open to dangerous financial consequences. For a surprisingly high number of homeowners, inadequate preparation leads to complications and difficulties, all too often including the forced sale of property. 

Consulting with a firm like OC Wills & Trust Attorneys, with extensive experience in elder law and asset protection, as well as estate planning, provides comfort and assurance to clients that their property investment is preserved and their future safeguarded. Our highly qualified California attorneys are eager to help meet all of your estate planning needs. We can be reached in our Irvine offices at 949.288.3598.

Brian Chew, the managing partner of OC Wills & Trust Attorneys, has extensive experience in the areas of estate planning, asset protection planning, business succession planning, long-term care planning, and veterans’ benefits. By devoting his practice to estate planning matters, he has founded a firm that strives to provide exceptional service to their clients by working closely with individuals and their families to create comprehensive and customized estate plans. For the past twenty five years, Brian has served thousands of clients in the matters of estate planning, wills and trusts. If you have any questions about this article, you can reach Brian Chew here.