Estate planning concerns regarding Delaware real estate

Providing for loved ones after death often includes leaving real estate, such as a family home, to an heir or beneficiary. Before moving forward with estate planning, Delaware residents will want to consider all of the possible ramifications to the person who will receive the property. Otherwise, what should be a generous gift could become a financial and logistical nightmare. 

Many Delaware residents want to keep their homes “in the family” after death. However, a realistic look at the cost of doing so should be done before making any final decisions. The first step would be to get an appraisal of the property to determine its value. Thereafter, an inspection might be a good idea in order to determine what the current and future maintenance and repair issues could be.

Owning a home is a large financial investment, and if an heir or beneficiary is not able to meet those monetary requirements, it could become more of a burden than a gift. In addition to maintaining the home, there could also be tax ramifications that need to be taken into consideration. If there is a mortgage on the property, whether the person receiving the property will be able to afford it is another factor that needs to be considered prior to bequeathing it to him or her.

Depending on the circumstances, arrangements could be made in order to bequeath the home and provide for the financial issues involved in ownership of the property. In the alternative, arranging for the sale of the home after death might also be the best way to provide for loved ones. In either case, estate planning is essential to ensure that an individual’s wishes are carried out after death.

Source:, “Five Estate Planning Questions to Ask About Real Estate“, Keith Schaafsma, Oct. 19, 2016



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