If you’ve had any experience dealing with the housing market, you know how daunting the process can be. If you’ve recently bought a home, you’re probably still trying to get settled, on top of handling new payments and filling out all kinds of paperwork.
Amidst all the chaos and excitement of moving, there’s another question you’ve likely asked yourself: How will I protect my home?
Aside from doorbell cameras and security systems, your home needs protection from probate court, family conflict, and creditors, especially if you would like to pass it off to your spouse, children, or relatives in the future. This is where you can benefit from putting your home into a Living Trust.
When you create your Living Trust, you have the option to transfer assets into it, including any property. This is called funding your Trust. When you fund your Trust, you transfer ownership of your property to the Trust, with you as the Trustee/Co-Trustee. The title of your property would list you as the Trustee of your Trust, rather than just your name, or you and your spouse, for example, as the owner(s).
Putting your home in a Revocable Living Trust does not affect your property taxes or mortgage payments. However, it’s important to note that some lenders might require you to take your home out of the Trust if you want to take out a loan. Before adding property to your Trust, you should also check that your property will continue to be covered under your homeowner’s insurance policy after it is retitled.
Your next step is to make sure that the change in ownership is recorded in the county where your property is located. In California, this is most commonly done by filing a grant deed.
A grant deed:
- Describes the property that is being transferred e.g. your home address
- Describes the transfer of that property
- Names a grantor and a grantee
- You (grantor) state that you are transferring your property to your Living Trust (grantee), with you as the Trustee
Benefits of putting your home in a Trust:
- Avoid probate
- Easier transfer of property to loved ones
- Maintain privacy
- Avoid creditors
- Add specific instructions for distribution
If you are a new homeowner or looking to buy a home, consider putting your property in a Living Trust. You can save time and money down the line, and have peace of mind knowing that your home will be passed down to the people you choose.