To sell or not to sell that is the question.

Hi all hoping for some advice please.
Mum & Dad both 90, one Alzheimer’s one vascular. POA for Mum, but more complicated for Dad as solicitor retired and authenticated EPA lost so starting again with OPG.
There are mirror wills in place and both are currently in respite care self funding.
Social Worker has arranged for a DOLS assessment to take place to decide if they can go home (obviously with massive support from ourselves and paid for care) TBH its likely that they are best supported in the care home but if they do stay, does anyone know what would be best regarding the property.  Should we sell now, (or as soon as Dad’s POA in place) or would it be beneficial to keep the property and either rent it out or mothball it?
Thinking about inheritance tax- with savings and property; we will be there or thereabouts if they don’t thrive in the care home.  Is it more beneficial to still have the property rather than have liquidated, or, so long as the total is under the threshold, does it matter how the estate is made up?
Thank in advance for anyone who can advise.
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Comments

  • Keep_pedalling
    Keep_pedalling Posts: 16,201
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    You won’t be able to sell until you have POA in place. Does your father have the mental capacity to make an LPA? If not I am afraid you will have to go down the deputyship route.

    Renting out is not likely to a good option, especially if it will require you to spend money on bringing the house up to the standard required to be able to rent out. 
  • Klare1
    Klare1 Posts: 32
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    Thanks for your response @Keep_pedalling
    SW signed the mental capacity, so hopefully OPG will approve. Otherwise, I agree that’s another headache, especially if Mum passes before we’ve got it sorted. At the moment using Mum’s capital to pay for both of them.
    Property would only need minimal upgrade to rent out; possibly a new boiler and the lift removing, but worried about any possible repelling of section 21 no fault evictions if we needed to sell to pay care fees, as would hate to have to borrow from social services then pay interest, whilst we sold. 
    Such a mine field, head hurts with it all, but so long as the tax man doesn’t benefit if there isn’t a property, it might be easier to sell whilst they are both still with us? 
  • Keep_pedalling
    Keep_pedalling Posts: 16,201
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    We had a thread some time back where someone rented out their parents house out to help with care costs, but unfortunately got a tenant from hell who stopped paying rent, trashed the place and cost them a small fortune in legal fees to get them evicted.
  • badmemory
    badmemory Posts: 7,514
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    We looked at renting out when our mother went into a care home.  There is no way, despite it being quite a high value property, that the rent after all the various charges would have paid for the care home & as Keep pedalling said you could land up with the tenant from hell.  Especially if they do go the stopping no fault evictions route.
  • Marcon
    Marcon Posts: 9,996
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    Klare1 said:

    Thinking about inheritance tax- with savings and property; we will be there or thereabouts if they don’t thrive in the care home.  Is it more beneficial to still have the property rather than have liquidated, or, so long as the total is under the threshold, does it matter how the estate is made up?

    This might help: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/how-downsizing-selling-or-gifting-a-home-affects-the-additional-inheritance-tax-threshold
    Googling on your question might have been both quicker and easier, if you're only after simple facts rather than opinions!  
  • 43722
    43722 Posts: 222
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    Doesn't the Power of Attorney, (or Deputyship, if it comes to that,) entail acting in the best interests of the individual concerned? I can understand that this may well involve selling a property. But the aim of a sale would be to help provide the best result (care) for the individuals.
  • If you would sell once both your parents have sadly died then if they are unable to go home it makes sense to sell now, once you have the LPA’s. All the property is going to do is demand your time and energy and be a potential ongoing issue. 
  • RAS
    RAS Posts: 32,461
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    Even with your parents in a care home, you will have quite enough on your plates without the huge learning curve involved in becoming an LL.

    Read up in the renting and selling forum. There is a list of things which invalidate an S21 notice; it's not entirely up to date but there are over 80 things you could get wrong, or forget to do within time  in all the hustle and trouble of being responsible for elderly folk. Using an agency doesn't alter the fact that you would be legally responsible, just makes it more likely there will be a muck up. 
    The person who has not made a mistake, has made nothing
  • Warslet
    Warslet Posts: 42
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    I did what I thought was the right thing as POA for my mother-in-law. Family involved in decision. Had the choice of a care home or 24 hour care at home as unable to look after herself in any way and live almost 2.5hours away. Staying at home meant paying gas/electricity bills and food bills. Savings would eventually run out and would have to fund expensive home care as well as property upkeep. Sold the property and in a care home. No worries about property and being looked after well. Having to pay tax on interest but a headache I would rather have than a phone call about a problem with the property. 
  • msb1234
    msb1234 Posts: 507
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    The current waiting time with the OPG for Deputyship is around 8 months. I applied last December and it was approved in August! I’m currently selling my stepfather’s house- he is in a home and will never return (under a DOLS). If I were you, I’d put the house on the market now and sell it as a probate property although it’s not probate, but that will give buyers an idea of the timescale. Once it’s sold, you’ll obviously have to split the proceeds equally between each parent even though they have mirror wills. 
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