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What You Need to Know About Estate Settlement for Mobile Homes

Mobile homes are considered real estate only in a few situations

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Mobile homes can either be used as a secondary or primary home, and are often valued by owners for the flexibility and affordability they represent. But what happens when someone who owns a mobile home passes away? Is the mobile home treated as real estate, or as simply another asset in someone’s estate?

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Mobile homes are not (usually) real estate

Unless the owner of the mobile home also owns the parcel of land on which the home stands on, and has tied the home to the land as a sort of “package deal,” then a mobile home is simply considered personal property, just like a car, a computer, or a boat.

This means that a mobile home will be assessed in the same way any other personal property is assessed during the probate process. This means that an estate executor will have to assess the value of the mobile home, and factor in any costs the home is accruing. However, it’s worth pointing out that although mobile homes aren’t considered real estate, they still have a title that needs to be transferred when the property is sold or passed on to a beneficiary.

Mobile homes during probate

As such, it’s important to factor a mobile home into any estate planning procedures, and a will should state who the beneficiary of the mobile home should be. If a direct beneficiary is named, then the title can be transferred easily and the asset can even skip probate, thereby saving an executor a nice chunk of time (and helping the estate save on fees).

If no beneficiary is named, then the estate executor can decide to sell the mobile home in order to cover debts and estate expenses. Plus, mobile homes can continue to incur costs during the probate process: If the home sits on rented land, then rent for the parcel will continue to accumulate during probate, thereby increasing expenses. As such, many estate executors may choose to deal with a mobile home as quickly as possible, either by selling it or transferring the title.

It’s also worth pointing out that unlike real estate, mobile homes tend to depreciate in value as time goes on. As such, they’re not a lucrative investment and are most likely not a valuable asset for beneficiaries, unless a beneficiary wishes to keep the house for personal reasons.

Any questions? We’re happy to chat about the ins and outs of the estate settlement process! Get in touch for a free consultation today.

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