Transferring Real Estate To Your Revocable Living Trust

Some people don't like the thought that all of their real estate assets will be frozen when they die, in a way that their survivors will not be able to immediately sell the home or other real estate assets without first having to go through a court-supervised Succession procedure.

So some transfer their real estate to their living trust, and name a Successor Trustee who can either sell the real estate or transfer the real estate out of the trust to the appropriate trust beneficiaries.

Here are a few categories of real estate that Louisiana residents must deal with as they pass it along to their survivors:

Home. Many people own a home when they die. You can tranfer your home to your trust during your lifetime. You should work with your estate planning attorney to structure the title of your home so that you keep your property tax homestead exemption. Donating the home outright to your children during your lifetime will cause you to lose your homestead exemption, and your children will likely pay significantly more capital gains tax when they sell your home after you die. All this can be avoided with proper planning. Your estate planning attorney who is well-versed can help you.

Out of State Property. Louisiana residents don't like the idea of their family having to go through multiple probates, in different states. But this will be necessary if you own property in your name in more than one state when you die. You can avoid all of these probates by transferring both your Louisiana property and your out of state property to your Living Trust.

Undivided Interest in Property. Many people own an undivided interest in property. Four siblings, for example, may have inherited 10 acres total. Each sibling does not own their own 2.5 acre tract (unless the children divided the property formally). Each child owns an undivided 25% interest in the entire 10 acre tract. You can transfer your undivided interest to your trust without affecting the interests of the other co-owners.

If property you have is in an LLC (limited liability company), then you do not need to transfer this underlying property to your trust. Transferring your LLC membership interest takes care of this.