If you own a home, there may come a day when you want to transfer it. Chances are, the transfer will be to someone you know well. You can also transfer your home into a living trust or to an LLC. Although you might expect a complicated process involving court dates or a real estate closing, in cases like these, a notarized letter called a quitclaim deed is all it takes. If you still have a mortgage on your property, you’ll also have to let the mortgage holder know, since your contract may have a “due on sale” clause that requires you to pay the total amount due when you transfer ownership.
TL;DR (Too Long; Didn't Read)
You can use a quitclaim deed to transfer ownership of a house from yourself to another party. A quitclaim deed may also be substituted with a warranty deed in specific scenarios where applicable.
Transfer a Home to Another Person
The most common home transfers happen between two people who know each other. For instance, an adult child may move into a parent’s home at some point and the parent decides to transfer the property to the child. Often, though, home ownership is transferred between spouses during the divorce process. Transferring a home involves the use of a quitclaim deed, which is a legal document that terminates the original owner’s right to the property so it can be transferred to the new owner.
In this case, you merely include your own name and the name of the recipient as well as the address of the property you’re deeding. Also, state that you are forever quitclaiming your interest in the property. You’ll need the date on which the quitclaim takes effect, and both you and the property recipient must sign the form in front of a notary. You can find templates of the letter online that will make it easier than creating the letter from scratch.
Transfer a Home to a Living Trust
Having a will in place is one of the best things you can do for your loved ones. In the event of your death, the executor your estate will have everything lined up to distribute your assets according to your wishes. By transferring your home to that living trust, you’ll still have all the rights of ownership to it during your lifetime, with the assurance that it will go to the appropriate party after your death.
You can use a quitclaim deed to transfer your home to a living trust. If you have an attorney, you’ll likely be able to do this as part of the process of creating your will. But you can accomplish this without an attorney, as well. A warranty deed may be the best way to transfer the property since this type of deed ensures that the property free and clear of all liens as well as documenting the transfer.
Transfer a Home to an LLC
If the property is a rental or you regularly have visitors to your own home, you may want to transfer the house to a limited liability company. This helps protect you in the event that someone is injured on your property. If you use a quitclaim deed, the property will transfer to the LLC without guaranteeing that the title is free of third-party claims. A warranty deed will pass that guarantee onto the LLC.
In signing the quitclaim or warranty deed, someone will need to represent your LLC on the form. This likely will be you. You’ll also need to record the transfer with the agency that handles real estate records for your area.