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Seattle Scott
Seattle Scott, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 961
Experience:  I have 25 years experience as a Washington State Real Estate Attorney
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My mom owns her house & she is up there in years. Me & my 2

Customer Question

My mom owns her house & she is up there in years. Me & my 2 sisters have talked about getting her house put into our names before she gets too much older. We want her (and so does she) to stay in her house till she can no longer take care of herself She lives in Calif. I live in Utah, one sister lives in Ariz. and one sister lives in Idaho. What would be the best way to get the house transferred into our names so that the house wouldn't go into probate or a trust in case she should go into a home before she died and they would somehow take it under us & her if her name was still on the deed. Also, I know we would be responsible to pay her property taxes & insurance, but would we get into any trouble for anything or have to pay any other taxes for getting the house this way?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
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Expert:  Seattle Scott replied 2 years ago.

To transfer the house to her children and avoid probate on her death, you mother simply signs a quit claim deed in "consideration of love and affection" and she deeds it to you and your siblings "as joints tenants with right of survivorship" or as "Tenants in common". Transfering it for love and affection makes it a gift and there will be no transfer or excise tax when the deed is recorded. Medicaid has a 3 year look back period, meaning she will not qualify for "free" nursing home services for three years after she gives the house way. If you own the house with a survivorship deed, if either one of you dies, the house is owned by the survivors without having to do probate. If you own the house as tenants in common, when one of you dies, the house share (1/3) can be transferred by the will of the deceased person. if your mother want s the right to live in the house the rest of her life after she deeds it away, then she would reserve a "life estate" in the deed. If you are going to do the life estate you probably should get an attorney to write the deed. If no life estate but a simple quit claim deed, then an escrow business should be able to write the deed and get it recorded. Before the deed is signed, you and your siblings should enter into a jiont ownership contract that sets out you rights and responsibilities for co-ownership of the house. Alot of siblings get into a fight down the road when they are co-owners without an ownership agreement and one of them wants to sell, or move in etc.