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You now have found a great place for mom to live. She has a home and you find you are trying to figure out what to do now.
You thought the questions would finally end and you could concentrate on yourself and your children. After all we are all trying to get some extra time for ourselves, aren’t we?
First you ask – Will mom recover enough to return home someday?
Then next – Should we rent the home month-to-month or leave the home vacant in case she does return? Our lives are so busy right now and the demand of upkeep of another home seems too overwhelming.
There are then more questions to consider –
Do we need money now to help with the monthly expenses of the care facility? If so, the family options may be limited. You may need to liquidate the parent’s home to cover uncovered medical care options.
If you start to consider selling you should talk to your CPA – Will there be a taxable event? If you are like many families the parents were very stable and lived in the same home from when you went to school – How many years is that anyway? If that is the case there may be considerable appreciation in the home.
Selling a home prior to the parent’s death you may have to pay capital gains on the profits over 250K (this is for a single person, 500K for a married couple). This would reduce the size of the estate.
But given that scenario why have some of my clients opted to go that route? The main one I have found is “this just simplifies my family’s lives”. Right now more adult children are faced with caring for mom (more often than dad) and being in peak income producing years (giving more work pressures) and finding their own children needing attention. The capacity to “Do It All” topped out about 6 months prior. The caring for a rental home like repairing it, etc. is consuming time that is not there.
I have consulted distraught family members. They are fed up – sleep deprived tensions flare up and the normal scene is weakening.
If you decide to sell the home it is important to work with a real estate professional. There is a designation called a Senior Real Estate Specialist (SRES) who has training with elder needs. They can suggest options to recover time back into your life and make it easier on the whole family.
See the next segment in this series of blogs – We decided to sell – what next?? Part 3