How to Prepare a Deed to Transfer Real Estate Property into a Living Trust

By Alan Sembera
You, the property deed, you, real estate

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A living trust can help you control what happens to your property after your death. It is similar to a will, but it allows you to distribute property without the costs and delays associated with probating a will. With a living trust, you maintain control of the property until your death. If you wish to include your home or other real estate property in your living trust, you must also file a deed transfer that shows the living trust as the new owner.

Obtain a blank "quit-claim deed" form. You can download the blank form for free from the or you can get a form from your county clerk or county recorder's office.

Provide the legal description of the property in the appropriate space. A legal description is not the physical address, but includes information like the lot number and coordinates created by the county. Check the property tax statements or call the local appraisal district if you do not know the legal description.

Enter the property owner's name as the "grantor" of the property.

Enter the name of the trustee and the name of the living trust as the "grantee" of the property. Usually the person who is creating the living trust is the trustee. For example, if you are transferring property into John Smith's living trust, the deed will state something like, "John Smith transfers the property to John Smith, trustee of the John Smith Living Trust."

Sign and date the deed in front of a notary public. Some states require you to have a witness.

File the deed transfer with the official who records deed titles in your county, such as the county clerk or county recorder. You typically have to pay a small fee for the transfer.

About the Author

Alan Sembera began writing for local newspapers in Texas and Louisiana. His professional career includes stints as a computer tech, information editor and income tax preparer. Sembera now writes full time about business and technology. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Texas A&M University.