What are my rights if my mother left her house to me in a life estate but it was mortgaged?

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What are my rights if my mother left her house to me in a life estate but it was mortgaged?

She died 3 years ago. The mortgage is in her name. The mortgage company will not transfer to loan into my name but the county has the property listed in my name. Will it affect my credit if I can’t sell it or rent it and I can’t make the payments?

Asked on January 5, 2015 under Real Estate Law, South Carolina

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

I need to clarify some of the question to see if I understand it correctly. Your mother left you a lief estate in the house that she lived in before she died.  That means that she gave you the right to occupy the house the rest of your life.  It also means that someone else was left the house as the "remainderman" for after you pass away.  The loan can not be refinanced in to your name.  That is not part of the deal.  But you have a right to rent the property during your lifetime and you have the right to collect those rents as your own.  Generally you have all financial responsibilities but as to the mortgage you can share them with the remanderman.  I would speak with a lawyer.  Good luck.


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