A real estate investor offered to buy me lunch in exchange for information. He wanted to know how we held title to our properties. In other words, whose name was on the deed?
When we met, he explained that he’d gone to the deeds room in the courthouse to lookup which properties Kim and I owned. After much research, he concluded that we didn’t own any houses – and he was right!
But how can I be a real estate investor and not own any real estate. Easy answer. We don’t own any properties personally! Having assets in our names can be reckless. Plus, it can wreak havoc on our estate plan when we die.
NOTE: I’m not an attorney or a CPA, so what I say is just my opinion. Seek competent council before you make any big, life-changing decisions.
We use trusts to hold all of our property – both real and personal. In other words, everything we own is held in a series of trusts that are controlled by our trustees. We do this for two main reasons: estate planning and anonymity.
Let’s talk about trusts and estate planning. Most folks have a will. Upon death, their will gets probated. This means a judge determines the validity of the person’s will. And here’s the frustrating part: if anyone disagrees with anything in your will, that person(s) can sue your estate.
Oh, it gets even better. Did you know that once your will is probated that it becomes a…