When you realise that you can no longer provide the support that your aging parent/s need, and it has become necessary to move them into a place where they can be properly taken care of, this raises the question of what to do with their home?
It may become necessary to sell the home to free up cash to fund this next stage of their life. Doing this can create ramifications regarding tax and/or their pension, plus matters become a little more complicated if they have Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. So, before you place the home up for sale, it is wise to seek legal and financial advice. Consider also – do you have the legal right to sell the home?
Only the person who actually owns the house can transfer it to a buyer. If the home owner has become incapacitated, there should be someone who has been granted power of attorney who then has been given power to act on behalf of the homeowner. If you are the primary caregiver and have guardianship of your parent/s, this does not mean you can simply sell their home.
If your parent/s have just passed away, there would be an executor named in their will. If not, a family member will need to apply for a probate in court. The executor has the responsibility for dispensing the deceased assets, and this includes having the authority to arrange for the sale of the house. The house cannot be sold whilst it is registered in the deceased person’s name. A transmission of the house into the name of the executor must to be registered before a sale can be finalised. The executor may then sign any contract and associated documents as executor of the estate. After the property has sold, the executor is then responsible for distributing the proceeds of the sale to the beneficiary(ies) per the terms of the Will.
I know it is a difficult process to have to consider the practical and deal with the business side of matters, especially when your heart and emotions are also adjusting to these life-changing circumstances. Having a Real Estate Agent who has walked this journey with many others can be a source of compassion and strength during such a difficult season, whilst assisting with the realities of selling the home.
As a Seniors’ Real Estate Specialist, I would love to help minimise the stress that can be associated with selling the family home in these difficult circumstances and achieve a positive outcome for all those concerned. Contact Heather Abbot today. I’m here to help! Ph: 0417 001 186