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REAL ESTATE PLANNING ARTICLES

Transferring a Mobile Home Through Beneficiary Deed

By Christopher Combs | November 22, 2017

Transferring a Mobile Home Through Beneficiary Deed   Question: I am a senior citizen who lives on Social Security in a mobile home in Florence. My mobile home is my only significant asset, and I want my daughter to have the mobile home when I die. I read your column about beneficiary deeds that can transfer a home without any probate. I wonder if I could use a beneficiary deed to transfer my mobile home to my daughter when I die?   Answer: A mobile home itself is personal property. If your mobile home is affixed to your land, however, the mobile…

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Transferring a Mortgage

Transferring a Mortgage after Death of Parent

By Christopher Combs | October 16, 2017

Transferring a Mortgage after Death of Parent   Question: In a recent column you wrote about a mother being able to transfer her Sun City home to her daughter either by beneficiary deed or by a small probate affidavit. If there is a mortgage on the Sun City home at the time of the mother’s death, will the daughter have to pay off the mortgage immediately?   Answer: Probably not. Although most mortgages have a standard due-on-sale clause that requires the mortgage balance to be paid off immediately upon any transfer of the home, most mortgages are governed by federal…

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Probate Preferred Over Beneficiary Deed If HOA Transfer Fee

By Christopher Combs | September 6, 2017

Probate Preferred Over Beneficiary Deed If HOA Transfer Fee   Question: In a recent column you discussed the advantage of a mother executing and recording a beneficiary deed to her daughter for a Sun City home. The advantage was that the daughter, without the necessity and cost of a probate, would be the owner of the Sun City home upon the mother’s death. In Sun City, however, there is a $4,000 transfer fee paid to the HOA that is generally due upon the transfer of a Sun City home. This $4,000 transfer fee can be avoided by probate of the…

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Termination of Joint Tenancy with Right of Survivorship

By Christopher Combs | June 4, 2017

Termination of Joint Tenancy with Right of Survivorship   Question:  My daughter and her boyfriend have lived together in a Peoria home for almost 15 years. The deed says joint tenants with right of survivorship.  In other words, if one of them dies the survivor was to get the home. They have shared the costs of the mortgage and the maintenance of the home. Her boyfriend has been very sick with diabetes this last year. Without telling my daughter, the boyfriend signed a deed to the home to his 22-year-old daughter. Who owns the home now? What happens if the…

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How to Transfer Property Out of Trust for Beneficiary Deed

By Christopher Combs | February 22, 2017

How to Transfer Property Out of Trust for Beneficiary Deed   Question: My mother is the trustee of her revocable living trust (“RLT”), and I am the sole beneficiary. The only asset in the RLT is my mother’s Sun City home. My mother wants to execute a beneficiary deed to me for her home which will not be effective until her death. Can my mother, as the trustee of her RLT, execute a beneficiary deed to me? Or does my mother, as the trustee of her RLT, first have to deed the home to herself individually, and then execute a beneficiary deed to me…

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Revocable Living Trusts in Arizona

By Christopher Combs | August 22, 2016

Revocable Living Trusts in Arizona     Question: My parents had an attorney draft a revocable living trust more than 20 years ago. In this revocable living trust my sister and I were the co-trustees and the co-beneficiaries. My parents transferred, by a deed, their Chandler home into this revocable living trust. Since that time my sister has had significant drug problems, and has become estranged from my parents. Three years ago, and with the help of the Internet, my parents drafted a second revocable living trust which named me as the sole trustee and the sole beneficiary. Both of my…

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Depreciation Deductions Reduce Tax Basis

By Christopher Combs | March 2, 2016

Depreciation Deductions Reduce Tax Basis   Question: For more than twenty years my father has owned a four-plex apartment building in east Mesa. My father is terminally ill, and his doctor has told him that he only has a few weeks to live. My father is trying to get his affairs in order. I am his only child, and he wants to deed this four-plex apartment building to me now. When I get the deed to me for the four-plex apartment building I intend to sell the building immediately, as I do not want to be a landlord. Is there an advantage…

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Taxes on Gift to Relative are Paid at Death

By Christopher Combs | December 6, 2015

 Taxes on Gift to Relative are Paid at Death   Question:  My granddaughter and her family live in a home that I own in Cottonwood.  I have been paying the mortgage payments, property taxes, repairs, and other costs of the home for the past two years because my granddaughter has been sick and unable to work.  These costs of the home are approximately $30,000 per year.  Can I deduct these costs from my income taxes?  If I give the Cottonwood home to my granddaughter, will my granddaughter have to pay gift taxes?   Answer:   You are not using the Cottonwood…

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