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Dealing with the death of a loved one is hard enough, but it often becomes more complex when you have to figure out what’s going on with their assets and debts.

If they’ve left behind a house, that’s one of the bigger responsibilities that you, as the person’s next of kin, will have to figure out how to deal with. Not only do you have to worry about the mortgage, but you’ll also have to contend with taxes, upkeep, sharing ownership with other stakeholders and more. Let’s take a look at these one at a time.

You Have Three Options With An Inherited Property

If you’ve recently inherited a piece of real estate and aren’t sure what to do with it, your choice will come down to one of three options: move into the house, sell it or rent it out as another source of income.

Each option comes with its own set of legal, financial and emotional implications, which means you’ll want to deeply consider all three before making a final decision. Converting the home into a rental, for example, may seem like a great way to profit off the home without selling it, but managing landlord responsibilities is no simple feat – especially if you’ve never managed rental properties before.

Here are a few factors you and the rest of the home’s heirs should consider before you make your final decision.


If you inherit a mortgage alongside the property, you may have a few options in terms of dealing with it, but there are a few things you need to clear up before you can decide what your game plan is.

Who’s Responsible For The Property?

Before we worry about anything to do with inheritance, we need to determine if the mortgage had a cosigner. If the loan had a co-signer, that person is responsible for continuing the loan payments following the owner’s passing.

If there’s no co-signer, one of two things can happen:

  • If the person’s spouse isn’t living at the home and there are no other family members that are heir to the property, the lender can take possession of the property and attempt to pay off the remaining loan balance by selling the house. If the sale doesn’t cover the existing balance, the lender may be able to seize other assets to cover the remainder of the debt, or they may simply have to assume the rest of the debt. The lender’s options vary depending on where you live.
  • If the person has a surviving spouse who still occupies the property, they can continue to make the mortgage payments toward the person’s after-death debts, regardless of whether they were initially on the loan. The same can be said if the house is inherited by a family member, whether it’s through the will or probate.

What Are Your Options?

If you inherit a mortgage and want to keep the house, the first thing to do is contact the servicer of the loan. They’ll need to see a death certificate and verify that you’re the heir of the house before they can give you more information on the loan balance.

Once that’s done, you’ll be able to consider your options. If you have the money, maybe the best option is to just pay off the house. You can do whatever you want with it, including sell or rent it out, unencumbered by a mortgage.

This option may be particularly attractive if you can pay it off with any life insurance6 and not touch the rest of the funds in the estate. And then there’s mortgage protection insurance, which pays out in the event that the mortgage is not paid off at the time of death.

In situations where the loan contract includes a due-on-sale clause, immediate repayment might be the only choice you have if you want to inherit the home without occupying it. This type of provision states that in the event of a transfer of ownership, the existing mortgage must be paid in full. We recommend consulting and estate attorney because your rights may depend on where you live and your relationship to the deceased.

The flipside is an assumable mortgage, where you, the new owner, would “assume” the existing mortgage you inherited with the house. Assumable mortgages use a regular, monthly payment cadence, which can help you afford the inherited home. In any case, you’ll want to have a clear grasp of the legal ramifications of the home’s existing mortgage to understand how it will impact your repayment plans.

If you don’t want to pay the whole mortgage off, you have the option of continuing to make the payments. In certain instances, you may even be able to refinance the mortgage.


Taxes play a part in buying, selling and renting inherited properties, but the type and amount of taxes you’ll have to pay will depend on your final decision and your specific circumstances.

Estate Taxes

Houses are included in estate taxes. If the house is being passed to heirs, they will have to pay taxes on the fair market value of the property out of the funds and assets in the estate. Consult a tax adviser to go over your options for determining fair market value.

Capital Gains Taxes

If you sell the property later on for more than the fair market value at the time you inherited it, you’ll have to pay capital gains tax on the difference between the sale price and the fair market value. For example, if the house was worth $100,000 at the time of the person’s death and the heirs later sold it for $105,000, they would pay capital gains tax on $5,000.

Step Up In Basis

Keeping those capital gains taxes low isn’t always easy, but inheritors do have one helpful tool they can use to better manage their taxes. A step up in basis ensures that an heir only has to pay capital gains taxes on the difference in appreciating value between the date of the original owner’s death and the day on which the heir decides to sell the property.


In a perfect world, you would be left a fully functioning house that you could live in, list or rent out as soon as you get the keys. But for many heirs, inheriting a house means inheriting all the problems that come with it. These could range from small, decorative touches that will make the house more competitive on the market to larger projects required to make the space livable.

The current condition of the home may help guide your final decision, as the amount of work you’ll need to put in the home can depend on what you decide to do with it. Here are a few factors to consider:

  • If you want to live in the house yourself, then you’ll only need to ensure that the space is safe. Any decorative or nonessential improvements are at your discretion.
  • Renting out the house will require a bit more work. Although renters may not care about more substantial fixes – as the expectation is that the landlord will still be responsible for repairing them – you may have to upgrade some appliances and add unique design features in order to make the space stand out against other apartments.
  • Because buyers will want you to complete all major renovations before they purchase, putting the home on the market could demand the most repair work. Start by conducting a home inspection to get an idea of how much time and resources you’ll have to put into the property.


Inheriting a house often becomes much more complicated when parents leave the property to multiple heirs – particularly if the stakeholders have conflicting opinions on the best way to move forward. If your parents granted an equal portion of the property to each child during their estate planning, then you all have equal say in the outcome. So how do you come to a final decision without damaging your relationships with them?

If you want to keep the home but your siblings want to sell, the solution could be to refinance and buy out the other heirs. A buyout essentially means that one heir becomes the sole homeowner of the property, allowing the other heirs to walk away with their portion of the inheritance. This option can reduce family disputes down the line, as it will prevent you and your siblings from arguing over who owns what.

If, on the other hand, everyone agrees to keep the home in the family, then the next step is to decide how you want to use the property. Homes near lakes, mountains or other attractions translate well into vacation homes – so long as you and your siblings are OK with sharing. Or, you could decide to partner with your siblings and put the home up for rent. Keep in mind that you and the other heirs will need to clearly define each person’s responsibilities when you apportion landlord duties.

Families who can’t come to a decision may need to involve a third party, such as a judge, to make an impartial decision on the best course of action.

The Bottom Line: Make The Best Financial Decision For Your Family

Grieving the death of a loved one is hard enough without having to worry about any financial responsibilities left behind. But having to balance these new duties with your grief can make it even more difficult to make the best decision.

If you’re struggling to find the best path forward, try to remove the emotions from your decision-making process. Regardless of how you decide, you should make sure your choice serves your financial needs first and foremost. Talk to your family members about finances so that everyone can be better prepared if something happens.

Still have questions about your newly inherited property? Read our tips to make the most of your inheritance. Or, leave your thoughts in the comments below, and we’ll do our best to answer them. When dealing with houses and estates, we recommend consulting a lawyer or tax adviser for the best advice.

This Post Has 79 Comments

  1. My Grandmother passed in 2016
    My Grandfather Passed in 2020
    We went through probate 2021 for Grandfather
    Inventory for probate was a property in Texas and Cars on that property
    In result of probate I was gifted the property in Texas
    In the inventory ruling in probate the property was listed as his “seperate property”
    I am trying to refinance the property and the mortgage company is stating that they need to see Grandma’s will and probate.
    She was never probated and I believe her will is no longer valid since the 4 years since her death passed.
    Why would I need to provide this information to the Lender If I am already on Deed with the clerk and the Court never needed this information during probate?????
    Any advice would be appreciated!
    A mortgage

    1. Hi Tey:

      I’m sorry to hear about your grandparents. Texas is a community property state, so that gets a little complex in matters of inheritance. I recommend an attorney. On the other hand, if you have access to the information, giving it to them might be the most expedient way out of this. At least the will. It could just be due diligence. You can also give us a call at (800) 442-4383 if you wish to speak with one of our licensed Home Loan Experts who may be able to give more insight and potentially help with your refinance.

  2. Both parents now deceased. My dad just passed this month of April. I was left his house. My brother is executor of his will. We don’t get along at all. He is a drug user and alcoholic. He got dad to sign a POA to him when dad was 89. I have Poa from his will when all those papers were written up. There was a loan on house that had to be paid or house refinance . That was refinanced now with 25 year loan . It has an irs Tax lein on it also. Can My brother stop me from assuming the loan on house and getting my inheritance in state of Tennessee ?. I have tbe original will that leaves the house to me. . I’m told lein will follow the property. But I’m not responsible for my dad’s bills. So it shouldn’t prevent me from living in the house I’m assuming. I can’t Sr it with lein on it is my understanding. Is gbis correct ?
    Thank you
    Pam Stepp

    1. Hi Pam:

      Your brother having power of attorney and being executor of the will shouldn’t supersede the instructions in the will unless there’s a new will that was put in place prior to your father’s passing. The tax lien may not affect assumption, but you’ll have to deal with it. When it comes to that, I would consult an attorney or tax preparer should you have any questions. I hope this helps. I’m sorry to hear about your father’s passing.

  3. My dad is 93 and owns his home outright. There are 5 of us to inherit after he passes, and I believe it is to be equal. However, I have a mentally sick sister living who has been on meth and has confronted my dad about letting her have the house. If he does NOT change his will, will us other siblings have to fight or go to court to get our share? The house needs a lot of work.

    1. Hi Laura:

      I do recommend you talk to a local attorney about the laws in your state. I can tell you that because it’s not a marriage situation, the spousal rights that apply in many states automatically wouldn’t be an issue. That’s usually one of the first issues.

  4. Advice on what to do next, my parents died without a will. I went through probate, and my siblings signed their quick claims for me to have the house. I been paying the mortgage after my mother died. I sent the letter of administration to the bank and I also have the deed changed to my name. at this time I don’t want to do an assumption, because I want to build my credit score up. The balance on the house is less than 40k. so in the meantime, I don’t know if I should refinance(same bank or other financial institution), keep paying the payments, assume the loan, or can I take out a personal loan to pay off the mortgage. Can I also have the payments reflect on my credit report without doing an assumption

    1. Hi Ann:

      I’m sorry to hear about your parents. Because you’re a relative and the deed transferred to you and the other children upon their death, your considered a successor in interest. When you take over the mortgage, it’s still an assumption, but it’s a type of assumption where they aren’t supposed to check your credit. You can find more information here, but you should be good to move forward with an assumption without credit worries. I hope this helps!

  5. my younger brother and i live at my dads place with my dad who is 83 and not in great health. my oldest brother who lives elsewhere was apoointed executer of estate when my dad passes. can my younger brother and i stay in the house and pay the mortgage when my dad dies or do we have to sale the house and move? our credit is not good enough to get a loan in our name but we make enough to pay the mortgage, so can we just keep paying the mortgage and stay here? we live in washington state.

    1. Assuming you can get the house passed to you legally from your father, there’s nothing preventing you from just continuing to pay the mortgage. The way your credit would come into play is if you tried to refinance, but you don’t have to do that.

  6. I am inheriting dads house. It is all paid off btw. I already have a house. If a person cant own 2 primary residences what is the best way to inherit it after it gets out of probate (in a few months or so) while I plan what to do with it? I dont want to accidentally get taxed and penalized or get in trouble.

    1. Hi Grace:

      You’re correct that you can’t have more than one primary residence. However, because you don’t have a mortgage on the property, that would then only matter for property tax purposes and as long as you don’t claim it as a homestead, you would be paying the right tax rate and you wouldn’t get in trouble. There are a couple of other things to consider from a tax standpoint. Technically, the estate can be taxed if you’re getting an inheritance of more than $12.06 million, but that doesn’t apply to most people. The other thing to consider if you sell the property is capital gains tax. However, given rules around step up in basis for the value of the property, the value can be whatever it is when you officially inherent the property usually. Of course, it never hurts to speak to a tax expert. This is just general information, but I hope it helps.

  7. As writer Kevin Graham says in one of his suggestions, a probate loan is one good way to go — if you qualify, to buyout a co-heir or beneficiary. Inheritance loans or assignments can work, but probate advance firms don’t especially like lending to heirs of an estate to buyout another heir in that estate. Often with no cash assets. But more than that — it looks very risky to probate advance or probate/trust assignment companies. I know. I worked for those companies for 22 years.

    And I learned that for estate heirs or trust fund beneficiaries inheriting a home, generally with low or no cash in the estate or trust, an irrevocable trust loan working in conjunction with Proposition 58, now Proposition 19, is the way to go to buyout a co-beneficiary who has inherited the same home you have. All protected by Proposition 19 & Proposition 13.

    You can transfer parents property taxes when inheriting property and inheriting property taxes – and keep parents property taxes basically forever, establishing a low property tax base through a parent-to-child exclusion. But the key here is the buyout of sibling property shares, a sibling-to-sibling property transfer, avoiding property tax reassessment by establishing a low property tax base, while the siblings selling their property shares get far more cash than selling out to an outside buyer with a broker or realtor involved, charging their 6% commission, legal fees, often fixer-upper costs; etc.

  8. Hi my name is Steve and thank you for all the information on what to do next. My brothers and sisters inherited our dad’s house and it’s belongings. We have a Will and it is to be divided equally between the 6 of us. We agreed that if we find something down the road with his retirement, we will split it 6 ways. We value the house and belongings to be around 380000. We all agree on how it gets divided. There are no other policies or anything else to divide.
    Now for the questions. Three of us want to buy the house. We have agreed on a price and agree on the buy out.
    My sister believes that the house, it’s belongings has to still go to Probate. Is that true!
    If not, can we go head and get a loan and buy it from them and avoid Probate all together?
    Again, thank you so much for the information and any help you can give.
    Take care,
    Steve B

    1. Hi Steve! I’m glad you found the article helpful. As for your question, if you and your siblings can get on the title of the property, there should be no issues with refinancing. However, we still recommend talking to an estate planning attorney, as probate laws sometimes differ between states!

  9. I’m currently in a tough situation with a property that was intended to be kept in the family…my father has dementia and his decision making is hindered, he’s about to list the house for a very low cost and is currently undervalued…and the plan has been to use my Gen Contractor skills and renovate this historic property b/c the potential is very high…as long as no hasty decisions are made..I feel like I’m at a point of having to “stop” this from happening..which means going the legal route..and the trickle down from what’s going to be revealed can be dangerous for my fathers future mental health. There’s a note on the property which is probably his recurring concern..but rather than relinquish it just to clear debt “before he dies”…the smart option is to let it increase value as I upgrade it. Its already gone up from 137,500$ to 212,000$..and similar renovations have reached 325-350$k..in the houses on our street. I can NOT watch my grandparents house be erased from their legacy…I simply need the chance to take control legally..or bite the bullet, take a renovation loan hopefully and get remodeling and the house in one loan amount. I’ve paid all cash for years..although I’ve paid the rocket mortgage bill solely, I have no real credit worthiness besides from younger years..I’m capable of paying the mortgages though and I’d like to get some really fast advice on how to get a liqn and rescue this awesome house from being lost. Thnx

    1. Hi Gavin:

      I think the best thing to do at this point might be to talk to a lawyer. I assume you’ve already tried to talk about the situation with him, but if not, having a conversation is a good start. If his mental state is in question, there might be options for power of attorney. However, if he’s deemed fine and has the title, there may not be a whole lot you can do without him agreeing to it. That’s the first hurdle to get over, before any credit concerns, but I would start thinking about ways you can build credit as well. You can look at small personal loans and taking credit cards and just paying off the balance every month. That way, if you do want to refinance based on your own income in the future, you have the option. I hope this helps!

  10. My parents both died my dad in 2008 and mom in 2016 when my dad died my mom put me on the title the bank told my mom and I to just leave my dads name on the loan along with my moms name so I am only on title so my question is ;
    Can I refinance the home if I’m the only title name holder because my mom and dad are gone and still both named on the loan ?

    1. Good morning, Gaby:

      I’m sorry to hear about your parents. The way this would work is that you’ll likely have to provide a death certificate to get them off the title when you refinance. You then just do the refinance in your name with your income and credit. If you would like to get started, you can apply online or give us a call at (800) 442-4383. Thanks for reaching out!

  11. Dad passed away in 2016. A year previously he’d sold his old home via Land Contract (legal in Ohio) with a 5 year balloon. Well, the balloon has come due and buyers can not pay it so have moved out. After we get the house back (myself and two brothers inherited the land contract) how do we handle taxes when we resell the house? Any ideas?

    1. Hi Dustie:

      It’s up to you, but assuming you’re splitting the proceeds of the sale three ways, that’s how I would handle taxes. Here’s more information on capital gains tax relating to home sales. I hope this helps!

  12. I don’t know where to start my father passed when I was 15yr old in 1999, my mother lived there up until about a year ago when she had to move due to other circumstances, I am wanting to get the house put in my name only thing is my father was with this woman that put her name down as his wife long before my mother but I don’t have a clue as to what the woman real last name is so I am been given the run around to the fact that no one know this woman and how was that it legally possible to put her down as his wife. I just want to keep the house in the family i want to fix the house and put my mother back in it. this is a 5 yr headache!!!! Please help!!!!!!!

    1. Hi M:

      My advice is to speak with a lawyer. Unfortunately, you may have a hard time doing anything until her potential rights to the property are dealt with. I’m sorry.

  13. Hello ! Ok here it goes : I inherited 88 percent of my parents house and my brother 12 percent . I have been paying all expenses in house . I also did not pay rent for his portion . And he never asked. Is he obligated to pay his portion of expenses on the house like taxes etc..and am I obligated to pay him back rent ? This has been going on for 8 years thank u

    1. Hi Ann:

      Rent is completely between the two of you. With the tax portion, I recommend you speak to a tax advisor to figure out how you could apportion that properly and make sure you each get credit for your percentage.

  14. Hey my mom passed away had a mortgage and only owed 2,999.10 and my mom had 4 kids no suppose and no co signer would the trailer go to my older brother who is the one taking over her bills and other stuff or if we decided between us for me to have it would I then call manage company and take over or how would that work

    1. Hey Jonathan,

      Thanks for your comment. I’m sorry to hear about your mother. Much of this depends on your mother’s will, if she has one. If she doesn’t, every state has a different process for settling estates without wills. I would call her mortgage company right away. They should be able to help you get the process started. Once again, my condolences to you and your family. I hope this helps.

  15. Hi,

    I have two questions:

    1. My father passed away, with no will, and I will be made executor of the estate as agreed by all three brothers. My older brother wants to keep the house, and keep paying the mortgage but would not be able to qualify for a loan, but is able to make payments. Would I need to keep it in my name or could the name be signed over to his name so he can keep living there and making payments.

    2. If there was a sibling living with my dad when he passed can they continue to make payments and just keep living there?



    1. Hi Steven:

      Thanks for reaching out!

      1. The title is separate from the mortgage, so it can be signed over to him without having to worry about causing a problem. You just need to tell the mortgage servicer.
      2. As long as the payments are being made, there is no requirement to refinance the mortgage into anyone else’s name. They can keep living there and making the payments.
  16. my Dad was buying a house on a mortgage, in his name only. no will. He died, my Mom paid off mortgage. how can she get deed in her name. Her name was not on any of the mortgage stuff.

    1. Hi Carl:

      It may depend on local law, but I would talk to an estate attorney. Given the fact that there was no will, this may have to go through probate court. As his spouse, she should be able to get the house, but you may have to go through a legal process. One thing you didn’t mention was the deed itself. If her name was already on the deed, it may be a bit easier, but I would still talk to a local attorney. Our deepest condolences on your dad.

  17. I own a home with my father. Deed states joint survivorship. He was the only one on the mortgage and I have been paying the mortgage for 10 years of ownership. What do I need to do for it to be put in my name? Does it automatically transfer?

    1. If you want to get the mortgage in your name, that’s something you would contact the mortgage servicer about after his death. You would have to qualify for the mortgage at that point, but there’s also nothing stopping you from just continuing to make the payments on the mortgage without actually assuming the loan. The advantage of assumption would be that you could refinance down the line if you wanted to. Regardless of whether you actually assume the loan, I would contact them to make sure they know he has passed. That way, if you ever need to contact them about something or get a payoff statement when you sell the property, they know to deal with you. They’ll likely ask for a death certificate. I hope this helps!

  18. I’ve inherited my fiance’s home, but my credit isn’t the best so I’ve been working hard on fixing it so that I can refi into my name. I haven’t informed the lender, I just continue to make the payment. My question is how do I get credit for doing so, as you mentioned in your blog?

    Thank you!

    1. Hi Michelle:

      I’ve looked through this blog post and the comments and I can’t tell where you saw that we said you could get credit for making the payment. The only way to do that would be to let the lender know and possibly assume the loan. I’m sorry. Thanks for reaching out!

  19. I want to give my parents some cash and take over their mortgage payment while still keeping it in their name so that they can downsize. They will then put in their will that they want the house to go to me upon their death.

    If the lender has a “due on sale” clause could they force me to pay off the debt or let them seize the house when my parents pass away? Or is them passing away exempt from that?

    If they have other debt at the time of their passing, can the sale of the house be forced in order to pay off other “non-mortgage debt”?

    I am in Georgia

    1. Hi Lance:

      If your parents passed away, the provisions of a due on sale clause don’t apply. In terms of other debts, I recommend you speak with a local attorney in your area to find out exactly how this works because debt settlements are different in each state.

  20. My mother passed away, and I have been listed as a representative of her estate. She has a house that is in forclosure, and has recently gone through the sheriff’s sale. The redemption period has 5 months left. I have not yet contacted her mortgage company. I would like to sell the house, as it has increased in value and there will be money left over after the mortgage is paid. How do I proceed? Can I sell it while in foreclosure, or do I have to pay the mortgage due completely in order to sell it?

    1. Hi Kelly:

      the first step I would take in your position is to contact the mortgage company and they would be able to tell you any options you might have. You may have to produce a death certificate so they’ll talk to you. You could also contact a local real estate attorney. The laws vary from state to state, and I’m not a lawyer, so unfortunately, I can’t tell you very much. My advice would be to first contact the lender, and if for any reason you can’t get the answers you need out of them, then go ahead and contact a real estate attorney. I’m sorry to hear about your mother.

  21. Hello i just found out i will inherit my grandfathers home when the day come he passes =/
    I have TERRIBLE credit, can i still just keep paying his payment or will my credit have to get involved even i i dont want to refinance just live there with payment as is?

    Thank you

    1. Hi Chelsea:

      It’s possible to make the payment as is without refinancing while you work on your credit. I hope this helps!

  22. We. Had a verbal agreement with a couple to purchase a home and they passed away the Son was managing their esstate and he was to have sent us a Written contract and he never did. The home is in foreclosure because we found out he wasn’t making the payments is there anything we can do to save the home? The other son is still living that wants nothing to do with it and bank won’t talk to us. We have weeks.

    1. Hi Diana:

      Unfortunately, there was no written agreement in place and you would have had to close anyway before the sale could take effect. Once the house goes into foreclosure, there’s a process that gets followed and it can take months. The bank might be in control, but they may have to follow the policies of whatever mortgage investor is involved if the loan has been sold into the bond market. Typically, the way this process works in most instances is that the house goes up for auction eventually. If it’s not sold, then it goes in a portfolio of properties the mortgage investor owns. The major mortgage investors are Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and HUD. But the whole process could be a while.

      I’m sorry I can’t give you better news. I wish you luck.

  23. I inherted a house that I have been living in for 30 yrs. it has a mortage that I been paying for year.My father had me just pay the mortage. Do I refinance the house to lower my mortage or just keep paying it? The deed is in my name will I have to pay capital gain taxes if I ever sell it ? What if I will my house to my son will he have to pay taxes ?

    1. Hi Sally:

      If you want to to try to lower your rate, change the term or take cash out, you would have to refinance the property in your name. That’s something we can help you look into through Rocket Mortgage or by speaking with one of our Home Loan Experts at (888) 980-6716. In terms of the tax questions, we would recommend speaking with a tax adviser in order to get individual advice on your situation. In general, if you make a profit on the sale by selling the property for more than its original worth when it was purchased, you would likely need to pay capital gains tax. As far as gift taxes, you can exclude a certain amount from the taxable value of your estate. That said, definitely speak with a tax person.

  24. My mom’s home was destroyed by fire in 2009. The home was rebuilt but not completely finished. My stepdad passed in January 2018, leaving the home to me with no mortgage. Here’s the problem. I live out of state and don’t want the home. However, the home is on family land and there are 4 other homes on this land, all family. I really want to sell the home but maintaining privacy for the remaining family homes is an issue. I’m at a loss as to how to unload this home.

    1. Hi Lisa:

      I’m sorry to hear about your stepfather. If the home is yours, you can sell it to whomever you want. If your family members are concerned about privacy, they can buy it. They can also build a fence or put up shrubs maybe. You might get lost for the property because it’s unfinished, but you could definitely sell it assuming it’s yours. If it belongs to everyone, everyone has to sign off.

  25. My mother passed away and left her house to me. I currently live in the house and am a full time college student (in my 30’s) with no current income as I was her full time care giver for the last 2 years. However, I have a lot of money in the bank (approximately 3-4 years worth of paying all bills including the mortgage). The money is enough to take me through graduation and finding a decent job, but not enough to pay off the mortgage in full right now. My credit score is excellent. Everything I’ve read online says I won’t be able to assume the mortgage without an income. I’ve also had a couple conversations with different lenders (not my mom’s) and they’ve all pretty much confirmed what I saw online. I haven’t notified her actual lender because I don’t want to unnecessarily open a can of worms and be forced out of my home. Any tips on assuming a mortgage without an income? (Why isn’t the money in the bank considered? It’s not like I’m going to default on the loan and screw up my nearly perfect credit.)

    1. Hi Alison:

      Mortgage investors want to see income because they want to confirm you’ll be able to make the payment. If a big enough emergency happened, you can burn through cash in a bank account pretty fast. That being said, you’re not required to assume the loan right now. You can continue to make the payments and the wonder doesn’t care where they’re coming from. Down the line, you might choose to assume the loan in order to give you options to refinance, etc. I hope this helps!


  26. I have inherited my Mother’s home and there is an HELOC on the home that I plan to continue to pay. I also plan to move into the home, but was wondering if a lender will loan funds for remodel with an existing HELOC already on the home. Thanks

    1. Hi LGD:

      We don’t typically work with HELOCs, but what we can do is help you do a cash-out refinance to accomplish your goals and incorporate the payoff of the HELOC into it if you qualify. If that’s something you’re interested in, you can go over your options online with Rocket Mortgage or give one of our Home Loan Experts a call at (888) 980-6716. Hope this helps!


  27. My father passed away in 2013 and he left me his home, which still has a mortgage on it. I have been living in the home, making the mortgage payments, but have yet to probate the will. The past 2 months I fell behind on the mortgage (company I was with for 7 years decided to shut down with no notice to employees!), and wish to begin a repayment process with the mortgage company, Seterus. Will I need to begin probate to put the house in my name in order to do this, or can I get a repayment plan put in place without probating just yet? I am now able to catch the mortgage back up as I am working again, so I am hoping to hold off on the probate if I can ($$$-it’s kind of expensive!). Any advice or direction would be very appreciated. Thank you.

    1. Hi Jessica:

      I’m glad to hear you’re getting back on your feet. My gut says you’re going to have to go through probate, but you may want to talk to Seterus first to determine what their policies are. That would be where I would start and I would go from there.

      Kevin Graham

  28. We (brother and I) inherited my mother’s house via a document that was created years ago that kept the ownership in her name until her death and then was transferred into our names upon her death years ago. He kept the house for years empty paying the HOA dues, utilities, nursing home bills (before Medicaid started), repairs and taxes until he finally sold it this year for $165,000. He gave me $60K and a 1099-S for that amount. I printed out a Zestimate from Zillow for $175K the week my mother died as prices in her area were declining. My half basis at her death was 87.5k and was paid the 60k after my brother took his half plus expenses. How is this reported to the IRS? To make things simple my half basis is 87.5k and I sold it for 82.5k a loss. What forms do I use? I know I can’t claim a loss and my brother must deal with his share on his taxes. Thank you.

    1. Hi Paul:

      I have no idea. We try to answer basic tax questions when it comes to things like escrow. However, taxes are not an area we specialize in. I would recommend speaking with a tax professional. If a consultation isn’t in the budget, there may be tax preparation software that can help. I’m sorry I can’t be of more assistance.

      Kevin Graham

  29. Hi, my mother in law passed and left her son and I the house with a mortgage. Can we just continue paying the payment or is there other steps. Also if inherited a house and before the deceased passing was in the middle of sailing the house and signed all paper work except closing, can the person who inherited the house sign the closing part… Thank you

    1. Hi Joann:

      I’m very sorry to hear about your mother-in-law. I would notify the lender or servicer handling the loan, but you can absolutely just continue making the payments. Once they’re notified, they’ll let you know what if anything has to be done to complete the sale.

      Kevin Graham

  30. I’ve lived with my mother, taking care of her for more than 15 yrs. She died at age 93. The trust says all assets be split 50-50 with my brother. Who does the house belong to and what taxes are to be paid? Thank you

    1. Hi Gary:

      If it’s 50-50, the house belongs to both of you unless you decide to hash out who gets it. You would pay property taxes and capital gains taxes if the property is ever sold. I hope this helps!

      Kevin Graham

  31. I am in the will only one got the house. It is paid off. I would like to know if i sell the house and get the money do i have to put that in her estate. Or is that money mine now. Thank you

  32. My mother recently passed and I inherited her home. The mortgage is paid and there is a small home equity loan or $5000 that will need to be paid.

    How do I first go about transferring the deed over to my name and take possession?
    Then do I contact the insurance company telling them I own it?
    I assume I then contact the bank for the loan?
    And who do I speak with about property taxes?

    Thanks much

    1. Hi Bob:

      I’m very sorry to hear about your mom.

      I’m going to start this with the disclaimer that I’m not an attorney. That said, assuming you have records showing you inherited the property, you should be able to take those to the county registrar and they’ll be able to help you. The county registrar should also be able to help you with the property taxes once it’s in your name. Once it’s in your name, you can contact the bank and the insurance company. They’ll go over next steps at that time. Hope this helps!

      Kevin Graham

  33. My mom is dying of colon cancer and wants to give us her house. My husband and I live with my mother as I’m the one taking care of her. She owes on the house plus there is a second on the house which she hasn’t paid on in a few years. How can we continue living here? What can we do to keep the house? Any advice would be very grateful.

    1. Hi Dee:

      I’m very sorry to hear about your mother. The fact that she hasn’t paid on the second mortgage in a few years could cause a problem if you want to buy the house or get it in your name otherwise because that all has to be cleared up. That being said, I think it would be best for you to speak with one of our home loan experts at (888) 980-6716. They would be able to give you advice on how to move forward.

      Kevin Graham

  34. My mother has just passed, and I have been named as executor. She has left me her home… which is paid off… but it is in a much needed state of repair. I am, just like so many others, at a complete loss as to where I start, let alone where I go from here.

    1. Sorry for your loss. The first thing to decide is whether you want to keep the house. If you do, you can take a look at a cash out in order to finance necessary repairs. If you want to do that, you can always check out Rocket Mortgage or call 888-728-4702.

      If you don’t want the house, you can make it presentable and sell it. Those are really your options. Good luck!


  35. Per my father’s will I inherited his home, solely me. The will is about to move through probate although he passed away in June. I am paying his mortgage on top of my own rent so his home isn’t seized. My question, do I have to wait to move in? I would love for his house to bit be vulnerable sitting vacant. I’m ready to go home but wondering if that’s allowed or must I wait forever for probate? My intention is to live there, not sell the home.

    1. Hi Jennifer:

      Since only you inherited the home, it shouldn’t be an issue. In fact, it’s better from an estate perspective if you move in because that way the property is being maintained as it goes through the process.

      Kevin Graham

  36. My husband inherited his grandparents property, there is no mortgage, how can he go about getting a loan on it with the deed to help fix it up. His credit is not very good, he was turned down by our bank already.

    1. Hi Bel:

      He can do a cash out, but it sounds like he may have better luck if he fixes up his credit first. The good news is credit is something that can be fixed. Here’s a blog post with some tips on building that score back up. He can also talk to one of our licensed mortgage bankers who can look further into his situation by filling out this form or calling 888-728-4702. Hope this helps!

      Kevin Graham

  37. Yes I lived with my mother and she passed in 2002008. The house has been paid off. I just had a 5000.00 deck added to the upstairs balcony. I was buying out my brothers half ..now there was a will. Next I know all of this isgoing thru probate I had been removed as executrix and I now had to sheriffs at the front door telling me I needed to get out or I will be removed. Can anybody tell me what just happened..since then I have been living in unoccupied bank forclosyre homes cuz my family and I have no place to live. Is there anything I can do to have this probate case reviwed again. Desperately need help.

    1. Hi Janette:

      I’m sorry to hear about your situation. I’m going to forward this to our team to see if they have any other ideas, but my advice to you would be to talk to an estate planning attorney. They would know the most about the probate process in your state and whether it can be reviewed.

      Kevin Graham

  38. I moved in with my Mom to help. She is 97. She has a reverse mortgage and has me as her executer in her will. Also I am to get the house. My brother lives with us…and has down syndrome and needs a home. What will I have to do…can we stay or will I have to sell? Judy

    1. Hi Judy:

      You have the option to stay by either paying off the loan or refinancing into a regular mortgage. I’m going to have someone from our One Reverse Mortgage team reach out and go over this with you.

      Kevin Graham

  39. I’m requesting financing for home that is in final stage in probate process. The home has no loans on it. Judge asked that I get approved in the event my siblings need to be bought out. I have had house appraised.what else do I need to do? Claudia

    1. Hi Claudia:

      The mortgage lender will have to make sure you can qualify to make the monthly payment based on your income, assets and credit. I’m going to have a Home Loan Expert reach out and give you more information.

      Kevin Graham

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