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Ask Megan C Your Own Question
Megan C
Megan C, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 16576
Experience:  Licensed CPA, CMA, CFE, CGMA M.Accy Also Teach Accounting courses at Master's Level
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My sister and I are both on SSI. Our deceased mother left us

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My sister and I are both on SSI. Our deceased mother left us a house and several acres of farm land. If we decided to rent the house or sell it, what are the rules that we must follow?

Megan C :

I realize you have a question about social security. My goal is to provide you with excellent service, and help you better understand your options.

Megan C :

Are you both on low income social security benefits? I just want to double check and make sure I tell you the right thing.

Megan C :

However, I hate to be the bearer of bad news. If your mom left you the house and farmland directly, you will lose your SSI benefits because those assets are worth more than the $2,000 allowed.

Megan C :

She would have needed to left the property in a special needs trust in order to protect your SSI income. However, now you no longer qualify and will stay unqualified until you sell the property and spend down all the proceeds to where you have only $2,000 of assets.

Megan C :

If you sold it, you could use the proceeds to purchase exempt assets, such as a house for you to live in and one vehicle.

Megan C :

But, you could not get the benefits until you spent down the proceeds.

Megan C :

I know it seems unfair, and I really hate to be the bearer of this news.

Megan C :

If you are on regular disability or regular social security retirement, there's nothing to worry about. It's only the low income benefit that is impacted.

Megan C :

Do you have any further questions about this matter? If not, could you please reply and let me know if I have provided you with excellent service?

Megan C :

Okay...thanks for that information. You had said you are on SSI, which is the low income benefit. I cannot see your email address or phone number because our system blocks them from me.

Megan C :

If you are on regular disability then there's nothing you have to do - this will not impact your benefit at all

Megan C :

You don't have to declare it to social security or anything.

Megan C :

Rental income is not deemed "earned income" and therefore you can have unlimited rent without it impacting your benefits

Megan C :

Rent is different than wages from a job.

Customer:

Therefore , if we are on regular disability, we can receive rental income or sell the property. My sister and I are joint heirs. I want to buy her out. The question asked was meant to address if took the buyout, would it affect her benefits? How would it affect mine? Eldridge

Megan C and other Social Security Specialists are ready to help you
Eldridge,

Yes, if you are on regular disability you can sell the property or rent it out. If she took the buyout it would not impact either her benefits or your own. It's considered "unearned" revenue - the only income you have to worry about are wages and similar items to that.

Thanks again!

Megan C