Dealing With a Deceased Family Member’s Estate

Unfortunately there comes a time in all of our lives when we will have to live through the loss of a loved one. No matter who the person is that we lose, it is a difficult time filled with many different emotions. Once the shock of the loss lessens, the reality of what has been left behind sets in. There are often many unanswered questions as far as what to do with a deceased person’s estate, especially if their death was unexpected.  While there are no right answers and every situation is different, there are some steps you can take to ensure your family’s best interests are met when dealing with the estate of a deceased loved one.

The most common estate that many adults have to deal with is that of their late parents. If this is the case the most important thing you can do is communicate with other members of your family. If you have siblings it’s important to talk to them about what they would like to see happen to your parent’s home. It can also be helpful to set up a timetable. It might seem too soon to discuss these decisions at a memorial service but if you set a time when a decision will be made then you can make sure everyone has the same expectations.

Once the agreed timetable comes you need to look at your options. There are several things you can do with the home. You can keep it and rent it out or you can sell it and divide profits from the sale equally among the heirs. You can also sell it to a family member or allow a family member to rent it out. If the home is in a desirable location, it might be an option to allow family members to take turns using it as a vacation home.

Most times the most logical solution is to sell the home of your parents. If this is what you decide is best for your family be sure to decide ahead of time who will be responsible for preparing the home for a sale. You also need to determine how you will handle things like offers or repairs to the home. When you are dealing with the death of a loved one, it is a time when families should be coming together instead of drifting away from each other. With some open communication and preparation you can spare your family some unnecessary stress and avoid confusion.