Author Topic: In-laws real estate question  (Read 686 times)

By the River

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In-laws real estate question
« on: March 27, 2017, 07:21:02 AM »
My father-in-law is 76 and mother-in-law is 75.  Fifteen years ago, they sold their 4 bedroom house with large yard and downsized to a small condo complex.  My father-in-law and the condo board president have had disagreements over the last several years over relatively minor reasons. Much of it the blame on father-in-law’s part. This has escalated to my father-in-law claiming that the president was getting kickbacks and bribes from all the contractors and he has sent uncalled for emails to the board president.  On Wednesday, the board president called the cops and said father-in-law was harassing her.   The cops told him to stay away from the president and stop the emails. 

As the condo is a two story with both bedrooms and the only full bath upstairs, it is not a great place to grow old.  My wife has been telling them to sell the place and they have now decided to do that.  We are meeting with a real estate agent tonight.  The condo is worth $140-150K (nothing owed on it) with a $348 monthly association fee.  Father-in-law says he has about $30K left in his 401K with social security and a small pension for income. 

My wife has four brothers, one older and three younger than her.  They range in age from 54 to 43.  The younger three brothers probably have average middle class income and savings (in other words, not in great financial shape).

The oldest brother is a loser…addicted to drugs, defrauds his friends and family, goes from job to job, and is enabled by his parents.  He lives in a smaller house that was originally purchased by my father-in-law 20 years ago with the (not documented) understanding that the father-in-law would pay the downpayment and one younger brother would pay the mortgage and insurance.  The younger brother moved away ten years ago so the house was rented for a year.  Older brother told the in-laws that it didn’t make sense for him to pay rent as well so he would do the same deal as the younger brother and pay the mortgage. He convinced father-in-law to put the house in the older brother’s name for tax reasons.  Older brother has refinanced at least once and probably twice to pay bills between jobs so I’m sure there is very little equity in this house.

Older brother has now suggested that they sell the house and condo and buy a duplex together.  They would have to take a mortgage out for a duplex.  One fear with this is that the brother will now just spend more money on drugs and partying as the enabling parents will make sure the mortgage is paid. Second, upon the parent’s death, the oldest son would continue to live in the house with the younger brothers getting no inheritance (My wife and I are not counting on any inheritance and don’t want any.)

What should we suggest?  I have talked to my wife that maybe her parents could just rent an apartment but she is concerned that older brother will spend the condo proceeds and in a few years, parents couldn’t afford rent.  Should we suggest buying in a larger condo complex so the personality conflicts take longer to manifest?  A small home for just them?

babybug

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Re: In-laws real estate question
« Reply #1 on: March 27, 2017, 08:17:29 AM »
My first thought would be to buy a small condo and just cut out the loser brother already. Let him deal with his house and consider that his full inheritance. The new condo can go to the other brothers eventually.

 But how likely are they to heed this, after coddling him for 54 years?

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babybug

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Re: In-laws real estate question
« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2017, 08:20:20 AM »
Also realize that if they end up moving into a nursing home, Medicare will seize their property for payment anyway.

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