For most people, the American dream includes owning your own home. However, family changes can affect home ownership, and should be considered by present or prospective home owners. As part of this multi-part series, we will explore how changes in life, such as marriage, divorce, aging and death, can affect home ownership.
PART 3 – HOME OWNERSHIP AND AGING
Home ownership can be an asset and a burden with age. The upkeep required to maintain a home can difficult as health declines, especially if one loses a spouse. For the elderly, a home may be the only asset of value once savings are exhausted. The issue then becomes using that asset to provide for necessities later in life.
Options for taking advantage of the equity in the home can be as simple as selling the home and living off the proceeds, but there are other factors to be considered. Suppose the home owner needs or is expected to need medicaid assistance? The value of the home could disqualify the home owner from medicaid assistance for a period of time. Suppose the home owner has suffered a stroke or has advanced Alzheimer and is not legally competent to sell the property? Family or friends may need to petition the Probate Court for an adult guardianship and conservatorship in order to sell the home.
If you or a loved one faces issues with home ownership and aging, consult with a elder law attorney to determine your options and how to best handle your situation. To schedule a consultation with a Paulding County Elder Law attorney, please call 678-535-3232.