If an owner of the house dies, can an executor just keep it by continuing to make the mortgage payment every month?

18 Answers

Relevance
  • Dan B
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    No.  You'd have to buy the home from the estate.  The law requires the executor(ix) to pay the debts owed soley by the deceased before any distributions of the assets are given to the heirs.  If the debts are significant, the house or assets may have to be sold.  However, if there is enough cash assets to safisfy all the debts then you can assume ownership of the home.  But you still have to meet the loan requirements of the lender to keep the mortgage or refinance.

    The mortgage can't be held by a deceased person,  It must be sold to a living person or living entity (corporation or trust).

  • ?
    Lv 5
    2 months ago

    no the executor distributes the will money , and pays of the debt owing .  thats unless your the only person in the will , then you pay of any debts owing . see the bank , after all the agreement was signed by the dead person , thinks the bank will want a new loan ..

  • Anonymous
    2 months ago

    If the executor is also the sole heir, and the estate has no debt, they can just continue to make the payments for a long time, but not forever.  It will never be legally theirs until title transfers to their name.  If there are other heirs or estate debt unable to be repaid, no.

  • 2 months ago

    What could happen and what would happen are 2 different things, in this case. The bank can call the loan when the person on the mortgage dies and the executor should try to sell the house and pay off the estate and if nothing happens for to long then the heirs will get increasingly annoyed and might even sue the executor eventually, to do their job.

    However, if the executor (for whatever reason) did continue to pay the mortgage, and there were no heirs getting screwed over (or possibly even if there were) by the executor not performing their job, then the bank would probably just keep taking the mortgage payments and nobody would really do anything for a pretty long time; though eventually legal limits would be reached over when the estate had to be closed - this would take years.

  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • 2 months ago

    The executor can make the payments, but he or she will not ever OWN the house by doing so. In order to own the house the executor would have to literally BUY it from the estate, or somehow be able to transfer the deed to his or her name. And it would also depend on the will of the deceased--if the house is left to any of the heirs, all the executor can do is stand aside while they occupy or own the property. An executor has no legal claims to anything--they are only named to facilitate the desires of the deceased or the terms of the will. 

  • 2 months ago

    No.  The job of the executor is to "distribute" the estate as per the Will or Trust.  He/she does not have any right to steal anything that is not left to him/her.  Even IF the house is left to the Executor, the procedure must be followed before any distribution.  Assuming it has gone through probate and the court has authorized distribution, even then, the executor/heir cannot necessarily just keep the house and continue to make the payments.  Not unless the contract allows it.  Sometimes, when the homeowner dies, the house is NOT transferrable and the mortgage is called due.  It would have to be paid off in full.

    Source(s): Certified Paralegal, with 25+ years' experience & with Wills & Estates law experience.
  • 2 months ago

    He can keep it in the estate, if the estate is making the payments, sure.  He can personally make he payments, that does not in any way give him ownership.

  • Judy
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    If the executor is also the sole heir, maybe.

  • 2 months ago

    Executor has a legal duty to follow the terms of the will.  If the house has been left to beneficiaries under the terms of the will, he needs to make the mortgage payments and pay the property taxes out of estate funds until probate is settled which can take up to two years.  

    Sometimes an executor will also be the sole beneficiary and I suspect you are confusing the two terms.  Probate will allow him to transfer ownership of the house from 'estate of' to his name.  If he fails to do that, he can legally live there but never refinance or sell it, setting up a nightmare for his own heirs.

  • 2 months ago

    The executor cannot keep anything. The estate, under the actions of the executor, MUST continue paying the mortgage with estate monies until the house is sold or the house is transferred to a named beneficiary of the estate. The executors first duty is to pay all debts of the estate and then to, as soon as possible after probate is cleared, distribute estate assets according the expressed written wishes of the deceased. The executor cannot intentionally drag out the process to the detriment of beneficiaries, say by delaying the sale of property with the intention of burning up cash to make mortgage payments, pay taxes and otherwise keep up the house, with the intent of decreasing the cash that would otherwise go to a certain beneficiary.

Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.