In the event of her death can she will me a house in her name once the payments are completed

My ex-wife and her mother are
making house payments that they
can no longer afford. The ideas
for me to take over the payments
and I’ll let them live there rent-
free in exchange for once the
house is paid off it will of
course be mine solely. My ex-
mother-in-law of course will not
live to see the house paid off, so
is that something that she can
Will to me even though it’s
technically owned by the bank?

Asked on June 1, 2018 under Real Estate Law, Texas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

Yes, it can be willed to you, BUT the bank still has the right to be paid: if she passes away before the mortgage is paid in full, the remaining balance comes due all at once; if you cannot pay or refinance it at that time, the bank will be able to foreclose on the home. All she give or will another person is what she herself has, and what she has is a home subject to foreclosure in the event the loan is not paid. So unless you are 100% certain you will in a position to pay off the loan (either in cash or by a refinance you are certain you can get), don't do this--you could make payments on the home and then lose it at the end, thereby wasting the money you paid in the meantime.
Morever: wills can be changed--so she could will the house to you, even voluntarily show you the will to convince you that she did this...then change the will (without showing it to you--she would have no obligation to show you the new will) so as to leave it to someone else (e.g. your ex-wife). You don't really have any guaranty of getting the home if counting on it being willed to you.
Either buy the house from them now--and they could give you a good deal on it, in exchange for an agreement that they could live there for a set period of time and/or until the mother passes away--or don't do this: if you can't buy it now and get ownership of it now, counting on getting it later is too risky for you.

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

Yes, it can be willed to you, BUT the bank still has the right to be paid: if she passes away before the mortgage is paid in full, the remaining balance comes due all at once; if you cannot pay or refinance it at that time, the bank will be able to foreclose on the home. All she give or will another person is what she herself has, and what she has is a home subject to foreclosure in the event the loan is not paid. So unless you are 100% certain you will in a position to pay off the loan (either in cash or by a refinance you are certain you can get), don't do this--you could make payments on the home and then lose it at the end, thereby wasting the money you paid in the meantime.
Morever: wills can be changed--so she could will the house to you, even voluntarily show you the will to convince you that she did this...then change the will (without showing it to you--she would have no obligation to show you the new will) so as to leave it to someone else (e.g. your ex-wife). You don't really have any guaranty of getting the home if counting on it being willed to you.
Either buy the house from them now--and they could give you a good deal on it, in exchange for an agreement that they could live there for a set period of time and/or until the mother passes away--or don't do this: if you can't buy it now and get ownership of it now, counting on getting it later is too risky for you.


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