You may be wondering, “Should I put my house into a trust?” In our latest video, estate planning and probate attorney Sarah Siedentopf talks about the benefits and potential challenges of this.
TRANSCRIPT: Hi, I’m attorney Sarah Siedentopf. I’m an estate planning and probate attorney in Atlanta, Georgia. You may be wondering if you should put your primary residence into a trust. So, should you? Because I’m an attorney I am tempted to say “it depends” and end this video.
However, there are a lot of good reasons to put your property into a trust and not a lot of downsides. So, reasons you might want to put your property into the trust: It avoids probate. Probate can be a somewhat lengthy and very annoying process for transferring property after someone passes away. Another good reason to put your house into the trust is privacy. Probate is a public record affair. Your trust is private. Another great reason to put your home into a trust is being able to transfer control. If for some reason you are no longer able to manage your own property, the backup trustee will be in place to pick things up and continue handling your affairs immediately. And of course when you pass away, the backup trustee is able to give things to your beneficiaries including transferring title to the property, or selling it, or whatever it is you want to do with it immediately, without waiting for probate.
But, downsides of putting your property into a trust: you actually have to do a trust and maintain the trust. Now, there isn’t a whole lot of maintenance required if you are the trustee of the trust, but you do have to understand what’s going on with it and feel comfortable with that process. However, if you are the trustee and the beneficiary of your own trust, you will be able to manage that house and sell it, or do whatever you want to with it, in almost exactly the same way as if you were holding it in your own name.
So, should you put your property into a trust? Maybe. If you want to talk more about this, please let me know. Thanks.
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