The biggest D's in real estate aren't in Dallas. As I said last week, they are the two factors that drive many real estate sales - Death and Divorce. And the issues can be costly and complicated if not handled properly in the real estate transaction.
- Upon a homeowner's death, title can be passed via a probated will or intestate (controlled by the government).
- If there is a probated will, the executor has power of sale. This is the easiest way to sell.
- Intestate (when someone dies without a will) title transfer depends on marital status, right of survivorship, children, etc. An Affidavit of Heirship is required and the heirs must sign at closing.
- Power of Attorney ends when a person dies. Prior to the owner's death, the person with POA can sell the property. The owner must be competent when signing a POA and the POA must be original and notarized or on file with the county clerk. Upon the owner's death, the executor of estate has the power to sell the property.
- Every homeowner's necessary estate planning should include a will, a statutory and durable Power of Attorney, medical POA and a living will.