Inheriting long time family vacation home

Co-ownership with family can work, however, siblings tend to be more forgiving of other siblings, but their spouses don’t have the same motivation to compromise. So the siblings can often times be caught between their spouse and their siblings. Financially strapped siblings may also seek to just cash out of a long time investment.

The best way to avoid controversy is to have a family discussion while the parents are still alive to explore everyone’s expectations and desires. Some of the considerations should include the following:

  • Meet and decide if you ultimately want to sell or keep the property.
  • If you wish to keep the property, and everyone is willing to share ownership, the family should draw up legal documents to prepare for the future. This can include a joint ownership agreement, Trust or Limited Liability Company.
  • Key issues are how and when the property should be used and how expenses are paid.
  • Include basic operating rules like schedules, cleaning, smoking, use by non family and damage.
  • Consideration should be given as to how ownership should be passed onto future generations.
  • Determine how ultimately siblings can be paid off, how would the price be determined.