What Should I Do if I Inherited a House? Should I Rent or Sell It?

To start, we are very sorry for your loss. Inheriting a house is a bittersweet thing – you’ve inherited a valuable asset, yet you are mourning the loss of a loved one. This can be a challenging time not only because of these mixed emotions but having to deal with property ownership as well. It’s no small feat.

As seasoned investors in Fort Worth real estate, we receive calls every month from people who have inherited a house and are wading through the process. So if you’re trying to decide what to do with the house you inherited – should you rent it or sell it – here are some things to consider.

I Have an Inherited House – What Do I Do Next?

Here are a few important considerations to help you make the right decision:

1) Make Sure the Mortgage Is Paid

This may sound obvious, but if the person who left you a property also had a mortgage (unless it had no mortgage and was paid off, which is great!), you have to pay it (assuming you want to keep the property). Some banks will allow you to assume the loan, while others may force you to refinance into a new loan. If you don’t qualify for a new loan, renting may not be an option for you.

2) The Investment Is Only as Good as the Manager

If dealing with brokers, maintenance, tenants, rent collection, and all the nuances of property management isn’t the best use of your time, hire a professional to help you or cash out now.  Some people who inherit homes decide to keep the house and rent it for extra income. That’s a great strategy for sure. You just need to be prepared to manage the property and the hassles that can go along with tenants and toilets.

3) Property Ownership Costs Money

It’s rare to see a building that has been perfectly maintained. Most inherited houses need major improvements.

Consider hiring a professional property inspector to give you a detailed rundown on what you’ll need to do within the next five years, along with estimated costs. Surprises are very, very expensive.

4) Selling a Property for Top Dollar Costs Money

If you don’t want to deal with making repairs, updating kitchens, improving landscaping, and overall cleanup, don’t worry. We buy Fort Worth houses for cash, as-is.

5) If the Market Continues to Grow Faster than Your Other Options, Hang on to the Investment

We can help you analyze the value of your property today versus the long-term benefits of renting. If you can use the equity in your property in another way that outpaces the performance of the real estate market, you should. If you don’t have anything better to do with the money and the neighborhood is rising in value, hang on – real estate can be a great investment if you know how to correctly read the market.

6) Uncle Sam Wants a Piece of the Action

Don’t forget to discuss your inheritance with tax and legal professionals before you take action. There are major property and income tax consequences that will dramatically impact the cost of owning your investment.

7) Consider All of Your Options

In certain situations, we may be able to help you structure a lease-option agreement that allows you to rent and sell at the same time, capturing the best of both worlds. These kinds of deals can be complicated, but our Fort Worth investment experience can help you win.

8) Compare a Few Scenarios

We’ll help you determine prices for any property near Fort Worth – if you sold it today without doing any work, the highest price the market will bear, and the projected value of keeping it as a rental (along with the costs).

Looking to sell the house you inherited? Give us a call at (682) 233-5658 for more information. You can even fill out our online form today to see what fair cash offer you can get on your inherited house.

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