In this part of the world, thoughts of death often gets pushed away. What’s worse is, majority have no plans for their properties on the occasion of their death, it’s just something we sweep right under the rug when it crosses our mind. Since death is inevitable, wouldn’t it be wise to not just amass properties, but also have an after-death plan for the distribution of those hard-earned investments to your loved ones? If you are here it means you’re plain curious and want to take steps in safe locking your properties, ensuring property inheritance goes to your loved one’s hands when you’re not around anymore.
Firstly in setting up your will, it should be on basis of how each property is titled. We’ll take a look at each cases of ownership.
Deciding on the basis on how your property is titled if it’s;
This should be pretty easy as the properties are only in your name, and there won’t be arguments or consultations, as ownership is not disputed.
More restricted, as this would mean that your property is jointly owned. You have to make decisions as partners, in case one of you dies. Legal advice would be necessary in this case.
After the above has been ascertained, and put into careful consideration with all parties involved, you’ll need to do three things to ensure proper property inheritance take place;
1) Decide who gets your properties when you die
Before setting up a will, the first thing you need to do is note, reflect and decide who should get your estate at the end of your life, if there are multiple beneficiaries you want to leave it to, then determine who gets what and share accordingly.
2) Set up a will
You will require legal help in this case. If you’re passing property to your spouse, the process is simple. But if you have multiple heirs, you’ll need to designate in your will, what the distribution of the property inheritance will be.
There are two options you could do, the easiest path could be to specify the sale of the property (s), and then have the proceeds distributed according to the terms spelled out in your will. Since complications can arise, you should get legal advice on how best to set up the sale
The other option is when you’re not willing to part with the properties after your death, you go the long route of deciding who gets what. You’ll need to discuss that with all parties concerned, and come to a mutual arrangement of what the property inheritance should be. For example, your will may provide that your beneficiaries keep the properties and there be no sale.
The more specific you are in your will, the less likely the chance of conflicts after your death.
3) Choose an Executor or guardian
Choose someone to look after your properties after you pass away they would be able to;
Execute the requests slated in your will
Ensure everyone gets their due portion
The best is to have a will, if you don’t have a will, the effect is that your property will either devolve according to the customary law or according to the administration of estate law of Lagos state or in whatever state or country you’re in.
Speaking of documents, there are the key documents that will be involved the transfer of ownership of your real estate to make it officially belong to your loved ones after passing. We talked about it here.