3 Ways to Begin Settling a Loved One’s Affairs
(Family Features) Following the loss of a parent, the list of to-dos can feel overwhelming. Not only are you adjusting to life without a loved one, you may be facing a seemingly insurmountable list of tasks. From arranging services to dispersing personal possessions to taking care of yourself, it’s easy to find yourself in over your head.
Especially if the passing was sudden or you didn’t have the chance to discuss the loved one’s final wishes, you may find yourself wondering where to begin. Although the specific details will vary from one family to the next, there are some common steps to consider once the memorial services are over and your attention must turn to putting their affairs to rest.
- Process the grief. With a long list of tasks looming, you may be tempted to put yourself on auto-pilot and power through. However, failing to give yourself time to grieve and come to terms with your loss can be destructive to your mental and physical health. Seek the support of family and friends to ease your emotional burden so you are able to effectively tackle the duties that lie ahead.
- Sell the house. With the financial implications of mortgage payments looming, real estate is often one of the biggest decisions following a loved one’s death. That was exactly the situation Becky Addison faced. She inherited her mother's home but wasn’t in the financial position to fix, maintain or own the property along with her primary residence.
“One day it was my parents’ house and then suddenly it was my house. I was not prepared to be responsible physically or financially for the property,” Addison said. “There were too many repairs to be made, my husband and I lived in another county and we didn’t have the money to invest to update it. We had to get rid of it.”
Unsure what to do, Addison contacted HomeVestors, the largest network of independently owned and operated home buyer franchises in the U.S. with more than 65,000 houses bought since 1996. Ultimately, she received a cash payment and was able to close in just 14 days. Today, Addison is a HomeVestors franchisee and helps others just like her sell their inherited houses for cash with no repair, cleaning or closing expenses.
- Manage the estate. Although it is a sizeable consideration, real estate is generally just one piece of a person’s estate that must be settled following their death. Settling a parent’s business affairs following their passing can be relatively simple, but in the absence of a will, it can become more complicated. Enlisting the guidance of a qualified attorney can help you navigate probate court, if necessary, and ensure you comply with local laws as you settle any debts and distribute or dispose of personal possessions.
Learn more about the real estate resources available following a loved one’s death at homevestors.com.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images