How to Keep Your Real Estate Protected


If you own real estate in Honolulu, anywhere in Hawaii, or elsewhere, chances are you have purchased insurance to protect your assets against damage or loss. But have you taken the necessary steps to protect your assets against lawsuits or probate?


If you own rental properties, there is likely a nagging fear in the back of your mind about being sued by one of your tenants. And if there isn’t, there probably should be. It’s a major risk.


And while it may be heartbreaking to think about, there is always a chance your death could trigger a family feud over your home, vacation home or other real estate investments.


Two common estate planning tools for real estate asset protection include limited liability companies (LLCs) and trusts:


LLC


If you have income-producing property, then an LLC probably makes sense for you, since it protects your personal assets from lawsuits or claims that result from your ownership of the real estate. LLCs may also offer owners privacy since the property can be listed in a company name, not in your name directly. However, you must be sure you maintain the LLC properly so the planned for protections remain intact. It’s not too difficult though, especially with counsel.


Trusts


If you own vacation home property that you do not rent out on a regular basis, then a trust may be a better choice for you. There are several options: a Qualified Personal Residence Trust (QRPT) is an irrevocable trust (meaning it cannot be changed without the consent of the beneficiaries) that allows an owner to use the property for a fixed term, and then pass the property on to heirs. This is a commonly used structure to reduce the size of your estate for estate tax purposes.


A revocable trust (which can be changed without consent of the beneficiaries) is more flexible and, if you choose a dynasty trust, can last for multiple generations. The major benefit of the revocable trust, besides control of what happens to the assets after the death of the grantors, is that it keeps your assets out of the hands of the Court after your death, and totally within the control of your family.


You can also use a combination of LLCs and trusts to protect real estate assets if you have a combination of primary residence and rental properties. I can help you decide on the best course of action for your individual circumstances.


This article is a service of the Law Office of Keoni Souza, LLC, an estate planning law firm in Honolulu, Hawaii. We don’t just draft documents; we ensure you make informed and empowered decisions about life and death, for yourself and the people you love. That's why we offer a Family Wealth Planning Session, ™ during which you will get more financially organized than you’ve ever been before, and make all the best choices for the people you love. You can begin by contacting our office today to schedule a Family Wealth Planning Session and mention this article to find out how to get this $750 session at no charge.


DISCLAIMER: All information available at this website are for informational purposes only and is not legal advice. You should contact an attorney directly regarding your specific situation. Use of and access to this website or any of the email links contained within the site do not create an attorney-client relationship between the Law Office of Keoni Souza, LLC and any users or any other party.

BLOG

CONTACT US

 

810 Richards Street,

Suite 770,

Honolulu, HI 96813

(808) 725-3456

  • Instagram
  • Twitter
  • Facebook Social Icon

All information available on this website is for informational purposes only and is not legal advice. You should contact an attorney directly regarding your specific situation. The use of and access to this website or the transmission of information via email or through this website does not create an attorney-client relationship between the Law Office of Keoni Souza, LLC and any users or any other party. Transmission of information via email or through this website may not be secure, therefore confidentiality cannot be assumed.  By using this website or transmitting information via email or this website, the user agrees to this information being collected, stored, or transmitted to a third-party.

©2020 BY LAW OFFICE OF KEONI SOUZA, LLC