Establishing a living trust

Properly transferring your real property into a living trust ensures your desires upon death are upheld. Many establishing a living trust fail to file the proper deeds after establishing the trust. When this happens, the property is still subject to probate court and costs.

Ultimately, the property may not go to the desired beneficiary. A California revocable living trust gives a person control of the trust assets while alive but establishes the parameters of transfer to beneficiaries after death. A trust is a unilateral contract between the grantor who owns the assets and the beneficiary receiving the assets. It is managed by a trustee.

Revocable means it can be withdrawn at any time by the trustee during the grantor’s life. A properly created trust defines all parties including the grantor, the trustee and beneficiaries. It usually includes a last will and testament, but more importantly, it should contain a schedule of assets. The real estate property must be properly listed on the schedule of assets including the address, assessor’s parcel number and legal description of the property.

The name on the title should match exactly the name of the grantor. Many grantors make the mistake of never funding the trust. They think that the schedule of assets is the only thing necessary for the successor trustee to execute their wishes. All accounts must be renamed with the owner becoming the trust. In California, real property is assigned to a trust using a grant deed.

A grant deed is a notarized form that states the owners of the property give the property to the trust. If the grantor is the trustee while alive, a successor trustee is named in the trust to oversee the distribution of trust assets after the grantor’s death. The trust might outline how those assets are to be liquidated and distributed. For example, a minor child who is named as a beneficiary may have a designated guardian. Her first career was in financial services and insurance. How to Transfer Real Property Into a California Living Trust. How to Transfer Real Property Into a California Living Trust” last modified July 25, 2017.

Copy Citation Note: Depending on which text editor you’re pasting into, you might have to add the italics to the site name. Related Articles How Do I Transfer a Title of Real Estate? What Is a Grant Deed in California? Can You Put a Home that Has a Mortgage in a Family Trust? More Articles How to Avoid Probate When Real Estate Is the Only Asset to Transfer? How Can I Do a Quit Claim Deed Myself? How Do I Fill Out a Grant Deed Form?