Accept or reject the real estate inheritance?

If you receive a property through inheritance, you should take a closer look at the decedent's financial circumstances. In the case of close relatives such as your own parents, you may still know them, and they may even have grown up in the home that was transferred. However, if you inherit, for example, the condominium of an aunt with whom you had little contact, this will be more difficult.

Only if you know the financial circumstances as well as the condition and the value of the property, it is possible for you to decide on a well-informed basis whether you accept or reject the inheritance. By law, you have the option of rejecting the inheritance within six weeks at the competent probate court. The deadline is the date on which you learn of the inheritance. If you do not respond within this period, the inheritance is deemed to have been accepted.

In exceptional cases, for example if the testator lived abroad or you yourself live abroad, this period may be extended.

In order to get a comprehensive picture of the deceased's financial situation, bank accounts should be checked and it should be ascertained whether there are investments in shares and funds as well as savings. Conversely, it may also be that he or she has accumulated debts, assumed sureties or still has current loans, consumer or real estate loans. This is because as an heir, you also assume the decedent's outstanding debts.

If his or her documents are very unclear, you or the co-heirs can apply to the probate court for a so-called guardianship of the estate. Creditors can also apply for such a guardianship. It serves to separate the assets of the heir or heirs from the estate of the deceased. This is intended to ensure that the heirs' private assets are not affected if many creditors unexpectedly have to be satisfied from the inheritance. This limits the liability of the beneficiary of the estate.

The digital executor, who takes care of deleting email accounts, websites and social media profiles, is also becoming increasingly important.

If the inheritance includes one or more properties, you should take a close look at them if you are not familiar with them. If it is a multi-family house, you should check whether all the apartments and commercial spaces are rented out, what the condition of the building and the rented spaces is, whether major renovation and refurbishment work is pending and whether the property is paying for itself, i.e. whether the rental income is generating returns. If the building is managed by an administrator, he can provide information on this. He also has the relevant documents.

In the case of a single-family house or condominium, you should also check the condition and fittings and, if necessary, enlist the help of a building surveyor, architect or estate agent. If renovations have piled up and exceed your budget or if you are not interested in keeping the property and renting it out, for example because it is far away from your home, you should sell it.

You do not know whether it makes sense to accept the inherited property? We estimate the value for you.

Photo: Witthaya

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