Losing a loved one is one of the most challenging experiences in anyone’s life and while you might appreciate a deceased relative or partner leaving their house to you when the die, taking on responsibility for paying an outstanding mortgage on the property can make the experience even more difficult, especially if it is in negative equity.
If a deceased relative leaves you a property with an outstanding mortgage, it’s important to know that you do not have to accept it if you cannot afford to take on responsibility for the outstanding mortgage.
The legal term for refusing to accept an inheritance is ‘disclaiming’ it. You can disclaim your inheritance by sending the appropriate paperwork to the executer of the deceased person’s estate, or whoever is transferring the property.
This must be done before you have accepted any of the property and you will forfeit your whole inheritance, you cannot disclaim part of an inheritance.
Assuming you have already accepted the house, however, you are now responsible for paying the remainder of the mortgage, even if you don’t live there, just as if you had bought the property yourself.
How can we help?
There are a number of possible solutions we can offer to resolve your property debt problems, depending on your circumstances, but for many of our clients a sale and settlement is the only solution to their problem.
Often people who have inherited a property after a loved one has passed away feel a great sentimental attachment to the house, which is understandable, but if the cost of meeting mortgage repayments is not affordable then you will eventually lose it anyway, the only question is how much debt you’re left dealing with.
We have successfully negotiated hundreds of cases every year where we have arranged the sale of our clients’ homes and reached an affordable debt settlement with the lender, writing off an average of £71,000 in unaffordable property debt for our clients.
Whatever your circumstances, the first step to dealing with your property debt is to contact Negative Equity UK for an initial free, no obligation consultation with one of our advisor.