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Selling the childhood house

Friday, April 26, 2019

When Trump got elected (this is not a political post, so please don't disagree on statements made later), my brother, who is a German historian, called us and told us, he was planning on moving out of the country. He felt the climate was similar to German, 1933, right before it became unsafe for Jews.

At that time, he asked all of us siblings (there are 4 of us) if we would be willing to sell the family house. My parents died in '94 and '96. And the house has been rented since ~2002. It has consistently been under rented but my oldest brother felt he would rather have lower rent and always have the house rented. In the last 17 yrs, the house has only been not rented for ~2 days. There may have been 1 month between renters. The rent is about $1600 but rent in this neighborhood is going for about $3000. When I have talked to my oldest brother about low rent, I get told he would rather have lower rent and always rented and tells me he is the executor. It should be noted I am the "baby" of the family, being 6, 9, and 12 yrs younger than all of them.

Nothing happened in the last 3 yrs. It should also be stated that my oldest brother, 3 yrs ago, talked about also selling his home where he used to teach and his primary home, where he lives full time. None of these homes has been sold either. But I don't own those homes and don't really care. I also can't say anything because he will tell me it is none of my business. And in most respects, he is right but now he is saying he has to sell the family home, as he and my middle brother both need the money.

When I expressed that I would like to wait a year or two, so we don't lose financial aid for my kids, one of whom goes to a $70,000/yr school, I was told too bad. Both my brother's need the money. Well, upon talking to the middle brother, he stated although he does need the money, he would also lose financial aid and knows that if he got a large sum of money, he would just blow it. So he prefers to keep the money tied up in the house and we get rent! We (my middle brother and I) also feel it is a bad idea to have the house sold (if we sell it) by the property manager, who has been overseeing the property for 17 yrs. Although, as a property manager, he is required to be a licensed real estate agent/broker, he has sold exactly 1 house in 5 yrs. I don't have the confidence that he won't look out for our best interest. He has been screwing us for (in my opinion) for 17 yrs. When my middle brother told my oldest brother that we aren't happy with his pick of who to sell our house, he basically said too bad, "this isn't open for discussion". At which point, my middle brother said, "You are right, I can shut this thing down now and not sign off on this sale." Now the middle brother and I are looking if we can refinance and buy out the 2 older siblings. My oldest brother told me how he needs this money otherwise he will need to get into his retirement money. Well, he is 65 years old and retired ~3 yrs ago. Isn't that what the money is for? He is retired and it is meant for that. It isn't meant to be saved and given to the kids after he dies. But I can't say that, as it would be deemed not my place or concern. Except it is my concern if we have to sell the house. He has 2 other houses he can sell. One of which he doesn't live in, where his old (retired from) job was, 6 hours away from where he lives.

The other option if we sell, we were told by our accountant and financial college adviser was we could buy a different property. Well, Hannah's college requires the students to live on campus all 4 yrs but after 2 yrs, a student can petition to live off campus. Hannah lived on campus this past year, as a freshman. Well, since Sept, she has had an issue with cross contamination. We had to step in since Oct. It never got better even though we spoke with food services and the dean of student affairs on NUMEROUS occasions. So when she applied to live off campus her sophomore year, she has been approved. But not many students are approved. Now she is looking for a place and roommate to make it financially feasible.So maybe we will take the money and buy a house near campus. Hannah says that furnished houses are so popular that they are usually never listed and rent quickly. So she may be able to get a roommate easily. This would also allow her to puppy raise since we own the house. And the following year, if the rent is cheap enough, her friends may be able to move into the house and then the rent would be covered. And after she graduates, we can either sell or continue to rent it out. The biggest issue with this scenario is by buying a new to us property, taxes will be WAY more then what we are paying on my parents house.

We have an appointment to meet with our accountant tomorrow and hopefully, he has contacted a mortgage broker to see what our options are and what we can afford.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • NATURE_INSPIRED
    I think your brother (the German historian) is going to *see* things that perhaps, others in different professions may NOT *see* but NOT raising the rent to be under BUT more desirable because it's still below the going rate is not very wise. Yes, it has been renting BUT at a substantial loss to all of you - monetarily speaking. Yes, and the beginning, his outlook WAS very wise, but ya' gotta' TWEAK n' CHANGE-UP things when it will be fair to everyone. Uh oh. Yeah, having to be the youngest does mess with siblings being/getting "bossy" and NOT listening to YOUR WISDOM.

    hrm...since no one is giving you a say...then perhaps they wouldn't be surprised if you aren't giving your signature away either. You own a quarter of the house (I'm guesstimating) sooo if they want it SOLD (and if you were so inclined) they'd put you in charge and GIVE YOU the authority to List it at it's *best* price (no more giving your livelihood away). Perhaps you could present him with this notion...

    Um...what about when YOU needed money all these yrs and the rent was never raised to the going standards or, low enough to be the *best* bargain?

    LOL!! I sure hope you do NOT use that property manager!! I'm not sure I understand WHY your older brother thinks he's got that much POWER. I'm sure he thought he was doing his *best* for all concerned (tongue in cheek) but it seems that the house is being DONE WITH however he wishes and the swindling pm is lapping it up.

    Tell him to sell his own houses and get a tiny flat that will sustain his needs until you're ready to sell your parent's home. YOU ARE ABSOLUTELY RIGHT, "He has 2 other houses he can sell." One of which he doesn't live in, where his old (retired from) job was, 6 hours away from where he lives.

    Oh, Hannah would be over-the-moon elated and perhaps safer in her own place that her parent's have provided for her in her time of need!! EXCELLENT option!!
    331 days ago
  • no profile photo CD22501331
    Sounds a bit selfish of him that he can't wait a couple of years. Will he feel safer elsewhere? Anti Semitism is in the news over here a lot lately. Is anywhere safe?...
    emoticon emoticon
    343 days ago
  • PHEBESS
    Wow that sounds complicated, and frustrating for you - especially since the brother who is the executor of the will won't listen to anyone else's opinion!

    But your middle brother is right, everyone will likely need to sign something approving the choice to sell. We had to do that with selling our parents' house after our dad was gone.

    All I can say is good luck with it, and try not to get too angry. Things like this, with people making decisions for others (like your oldest brother is trying to do), can disrupt the whole family unity.


    343 days ago
  • JANEDOE12345
    I have to say that moving out of the US over Trump sounds pretty darn good to me. I wish I could go as I feel just like your relative about the direction the country has taken.
    343 days ago
  • SUNNYCALIGIRL
    I see something that the older brother said that I find disturbing and would be of concern to me, making me wish that the house was sold as soon as possible. Your oldest brother stated that he felt Germany had deteriorated into the antisemitism of 1933--this was the year Adolf Hitler was appointed Chancellor of the country! Your brother said he doesn't feel safe and wants to move from the country. With the rise of hate crimes all over the world, I would rather be concerned about the safety of my brother than my own financial concerns. NEVER AGAIN! But of course, the world is still full of hate and violence, so again is quite possible.
    343 days ago

    Comment edited on: 4/26/2019 5:00:09 PM
  • GGRSPARK
    Oh oh... your family seems to discount your opinion. Continue to stand up for yourself but don’t get angry. Hopefully you can work out a solution agreeable for all of you.
    343 days ago
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