How Do I Go About Giving My House to My Children?

By George Lawrence J.D.

Whether you are in the process of planning your estate or you are simply leaving your home and moving somewhere else, there may be a time in your life when you want to leave your home to your children. The best way to go about that is to speak with a licensed attorney who specializes in property law and estate planning. Prior to meeting with this expert, you should familiarize yourself with the ways in which you can leave your house to your children.

Deed the Property as a Gift

Perhaps the easiest way to give your house to your children is to deed it to them outright as a gift. While the law regarding property deeds varies from state to state, because it involves real estate, the deed must be in writing. It also must state your children's names as the grantees to the deed, and it must list you as the grantor. In addition, because the deed is a gift, you must actually deliver the deed to your children, and your children must accept the deed. If you deed the property to your children in this way, have the deed recorded according to your state's recording laws. You can record deeds at your local property records office, typically located in your local court. Recording the deed ensures that subsequent purchasers will be put on notice that the property is held in your children's names.

Will the House to Your Children

Aside from deeding the property to your children, you could leave the property to your children as a bequest in your will. To do this, you have to write a will. This means that you have to follow your state's statute regarding wills; typically this means that the will is written, that you intend it to be the instrument by which your property is disposed of upon your death and that it is signed by you and at least two witnesses. To will a house to your children, include in your will a provision that specifically asks the probate court to give the house to your children. For instance, you could write: "I give to my children (list the children's names) my house located at (give the house address)."

About the Author

Based in Traverse City, Mich., George Lawrence has been writing professionally since 2009. His work primarily appears on various websites. An avid outdoorsman, Lawrence holds Bachelor of Arts degrees in both criminal justice and English from Michigan State University, as well as a Juris Doctor from the Thomas M. Cooley Law School, where he graduated with honors.

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