Whatare the best legal steps to take if my sister-in-law wishes to grant my wife and I 50% ownership of 2 single family homes?

UPDATED: Dec 28, 2011

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Whatare the best legal steps to take if my sister-in-law wishes to grant my wife and I 50% ownership of 2 single family homes?

We have lived in one of the homes for the last 13 years paying approximately 65% of the mortgage. My sister-in-law lives in the other home with my in-laws. We currently have poor credit and my sister-in-law just refinanced approx. 1 year ago. We want to be sure that we will have complete ownership of the property if something happens to my sister-in-law and if something happens to my wife and I that our kids will have either our 50% or complete ownership if something happens to my wife and I and my sister-in-law.

Asked on December 28, 2011 under Real Estate Law, California


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

The best way to take care of the situation that you are in is to firts have a written agreement signed by you and your sister-in-law about your understanding about the homes you are writing about and what your real interests in the home or homes are. You then need to have a "memorandum of contract" dated, signed and recorded on the parcel or parcels you are to get an ownership interest in mentioning the contract you have with the sister-in-law.

You should also consult with a real estate attorney about the situation you are writing about. There is a possibility that your sister-in-law can "gift" you a certain percentage of the parcel of parcels equal to $13,000 each year tax free to you and the same amount to your wife. However, you need to be careful that the "gifting" does not trigger the due on sales clause of her loan on the property.


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