Living rent free in someone else's home

stitch'sgirl

DIS Veteran
Joined
Nov 15, 2009
My parents were moved into a group home for the last 2 years of their life. I have 2 older sisters that don't talk to me (all is related to the care of my parents). My sister's son moved into my parent's house as well as a couple buddies of his when my parents were moved out. Their college is across the street from the house. I did not know they moved in.

Need opinions - my son is in college too and paying $900 a month for housing. Should these kids be living there rent free? And here is my big question -- shouldn't all of us have been asked if this was okay?

I only found out they were living there because my brother had to schedule a time for me to go pick up some personal items of my parents. My sister said he needed permission from these kids to go to the house.

I would have loved to save a few bucks by taking one of their 2 beds and other furniture-type items because my son is moving into a house on campus (a different university) this year. But I can't because these strangers are using the furniture. I have heard through my brother that the 2 sisters are renting a dumpster beginning on the 28th of this month and disposing of everything in the house. Trying to keep my emotions in check!!
 

disneychrista

DIS Veteran
Joined
Dec 26, 2002
First and foremost whose house is it legally? If one of your sisters owns the house legally then they are free to do what they want, including letting their son/nephew and anyone else live in the house rent free.

Did your parents have a will? What did / does it say about the house & it's contents.
 

cvjw

DIS Veteran
Joined
Dec 22, 2005
Who owns the house? Did your parents leave it to all of your siblings? If so, maybe it is time to sell the house and divide the proceeds.

Do you know for sure that your parents didn’t give the OK for their grandson and his friends to move in? I could see grandparents being fine with that.
 

stitch'sgirl

DIS Veteran
Joined
Nov 15, 2009
First and foremost whose house is it legally? If one of your sisters owns the house legally then they are free to do what they want, including letting their son/nephew and anyone else live in the house rent free.

Did your parents have a will? What did / does it say about the house & it's contents.
I would imagine the house still belongs to my parents as we haven't gone through the process of the will. My brother just asked me if I had a copy of the will and neither of us do!
 

stitch'sgirl

DIS Veteran
Joined
Nov 15, 2009
Who owns the house? Did your parents leave it to all of your siblings? If so, maybe it is time to sell the house and divide the proceeds.

Do you know for sure that your parents didn’t give the OK for their grandson and his friends to move in? I could see grandparents being fine with that.
My mom had mentioned to me that I could live in their house while we were in the process of selling ours. She said it is just sitting empty so why not? My guess is she had no idea. I think she would have been okay with my nephew there but definitely not strangers.
 

HopperFan

"It's a bug-eat-bug world out there, princess."
Joined
Sep 6, 2003
So your parents are living, and living in assisted care? If that is correct you and your brother should go visit Mom, without the sisters, and have a conversation about the house, those living in it and their will. If she is of sound mind I suggest you get her affairs in order pronto. If you don't sounds like the sisters are already lining up things to go their way.

Will your parents need the money from the home to pay for their care at some point? If so best to sell and put the money in a protected account for their care.
 

Imzadi

♥ Saved by an angel in a trench coat!
Joined
Oct 29, 2004
I would imagine the house still belongs to my parents as we haven't gone through the process of the will. My brother just asked me if I had a copy of the will and neither of us do!

Are your parents living and in assisted living, or are they deceased? They can't still own the house if they are deceased. The bequeaths of the will take over. If they are deceased, did they both die at the same time? Whomever died later, became the owner of the house IF they owned it jointly. That second parent still had to have made a will to say who the house goes to.

If there is no will then his/her estate goes to probate as the estate: the house and ALL possessions are split equally among ALL the children. You mentioned 4 of you. IF there are more, then it is split amongst them too. Probate takes a year or more. During that time, your sisters really shouldn't be getting rid of anything, (other than perishables and fire hazards,) as you and your brother have a right to things too. AND you have a right to enter the house without requiring permission. As a courtesy, you notify whomever is there that you are coming. And they make themselves decent for you to enter.

If the parent who died later did have a will, then that person should have stated who gets what, including the contents of the house. You need to find out who your parent's lawyer was and ask for a copy of the will to be emailed to you. And you need to find out who s/he designated as the executor of the estate is. Even if it's one of your sisters, and she would like to pretend she has absolute power and authority, she has to follow certain laws and again, not just toss everything out.

You and your brother have a RIGHT to see the will if you both are named in it. You also have your rights during probate. If one or both parents are still alive, then it doesn't matter what the will says as it's not in effect yet. With the exception of, if the one parent who did die already, was sole owner of the house and left the house to one of you and not the surviving spouse.

You also mentioned your parents went to a group home. That throws a wrench in things if it was state assisted, as the state or some authority may say that the proceeds of their home goes toward paying for their time in the group home, or something like that. I don't know the ins & outs of that as we didn't have that situation. But, there is that wrench.

If one or both are still alive, then as a PP stated you or your brother need to go talk them or that parent and figure out what decisions are being made about the house and ALL the possessions.

And if there is someone staying there, you don't need "permission" as they don't own the house. You make arrangements as to when would be a good time to come, but they can't act like they can keep you or your brother out. That person doesn't own the house.
 
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a1tinkfans

Spreading Some Pixie Dust Today!
Joined
Aug 12, 2006
Oh my, just want to wish you luck and May calmness prevail. First a visit to parents , perhaps she knew and figured.. it was empty? But Taxes? Bills, maintenance? U and ur brother should visit Together. If parents mental health affected.. find the WILL and be sure They are protected. They just might need that house money for their longer care. Good luck and hope it’s resolved and Everyone remembers, it’s ur parents who Deserve to be treated with Respect and Kindness. Blessings to them.
 

Mackenzie Click-Mickelson

Chugging along the path of life
Joined
Oct 23, 2015
Are your parents still alive or have they passed?

It's possible they discussed this arrangement with your sister without anyone else's knowledge.

How is it that the sisters have more knowledge and access than you? And it sounds like the brother has been left at least somewhat out of the loop too. I realize you are estranged so that can explain some of it. Were/are your sisters closer to your parents and thus privy to more information or given more reign on decisions? Is the one sister their executor of the estate or will?

From what I know with my grandmother's probate all parties legally entitled to property had to agree on the division of those assets unless something is specifically spelled out. I remember my estranged aunt ranting about wanting ice skates claiming my grandmother told her she could have them just to name one. And I remember all had to agree to in lieu of selling the house that was in my grandmother's name (but that my autistic aunt had been living in for several years at that point) and getting the cash split amongst the children they all thankfully agreed (it was just worrying about that estranged aunt honestly) my aunt could stay living there and that would be what she would get. She didn't need money she needed a place to live.

Do you think 2 beds and some other furniture would be included in a will or agreed upon just for you?

As far as getting the dumpster is there a reason why your sister feels she can do this? Has she said (or your brother) that there is some legal reason she can do this? Or is she just doing it without care?

I guess I'm just wondering is this really about 2 beds and some furniture?
 

Mackenzie Click-Mickelson

Chugging along the path of life
Joined
Oct 23, 2015
If there is no will then his/her estate goes to probate as the estate: the house and ALL possessions are split equally among ALL the children. You mentioned 4 of you. IF there are more, then it is split amongst them too.
I don't believe that is correct. Cash yes (and likely stocks, etc of that stort), possessions no. You normally can't split equally anyhow. Usually it's split up amongst interests like someone gets the tools, or someone's collection of something, etc. There is nothing legally there that states possessions are split equally or even amongst all the children.

House being the one thing typically done where you sell it then divide the proceeds often equally but not furniture, beds, lamps, etc. There is a question though to be had is there some authority other than her own that the sister is believing she is able to throw all the possessions not desired by her or used by her or her family/friends away.
 

Imzadi

♥ Saved by an angel in a trench coat!
Joined
Oct 29, 2004
I don't believe that is correct. Cash yes (and likely stocks, etc of that stort), possessions no. You normally can't split equally anyhow. Usually it's split up amongst interests like someone gets the tools, or someone's collection of something, etc. There is nothing legally there that states possessions are split equally or even amongst all the children.


You are incorrect. It IS true. You are talking about a situation where the heirs get along. If one of the sons is really into woodworking or carpentry, the rest of the heirs may give him the tools and machinery as it's his interest, even though those tools have more monetary value than other items. Someone else whose into music gets the grand piano, etc., with no one complaining about the monetary value.

In a bitter, contentious probate battle, such as we had, we had to all agree to have an arbitrator hired to deal with the estate, who then sold the items at auction & sales and then those monies were split between all the heirs (and the arbitrator getting a percentage.) We could ask to keep some items, but the arbitrator made sure one person didn't request and walk off with all the tools while others didn't get the comparable value of items. Instead the first person could get one or two tools and the rest would be sold. Or that person could pay (give up the eqivalent of the auction price in the stocks they were also receiving or whatever,) to keep the tools.
 

disykat

This person totally gets me
Joined
Jun 5, 2000
Wow. So sorry you're going through this! My siblings and I didn't always agree and didn't do equal amounts of work, but we always considered each other equal decision makers and tried to be extremely fair about anything financial.

Are you parents still considered to have capacity to make decisions? If not, who is their POA?

I agree with you that no one of you should be benefiting unevenly from the home. Putting unpaying tenants in the house is just wrong. Your sister blew it because now she has lost everyone's trust. She could have had inexpensive rent for her son while he acted as a caretaker for the home with the blessing of everyone, instead she is flat out cheating/stealing from your parents.
 

Mackenzie Click-Mickelson

Chugging along the path of life
Joined
Oct 23, 2015
You are incorrect. It IS true. You are talking about a situation where the heirs get along. If one of the sons is really into woodworking or carpentry, the rest of the heirs may give him the tools and machinery as it's his interest, even though those tools have more monetary value than other items. Someone else whose into music gets the grand piano, etc., with no one complaining about the monetary value.

In a bitter, contentious probate battle, such as we had, we had to all agree to have an arbitrator hired to deal with the estate, who then sold the items at auction & sales and then those monies were split between all the heirs (and the arbitrator getting a percentage.) We could ask to keep some items, but the arbitrator made sure one person didn't request and walk off with all the tools while others didn't get the comparable value of items. Instead the first person could get one or two tools and the rest would be sold. Or that person could pay (give up the eqivalent of the auction price in the stocks they were also receiving or whatever,) to keep the tools.
I'm responding to your comment that things have to be split equally. Possessions often can't be split equally anyhow because there's not equal of them.

Possessions in the form of furniture is what this thread is about. I specified money as different. You're talking about something else than what your other comment I quoted was about. Selling and then splitting the cash was something I said yes to. Telling the OP that legally the contents inside had to be split equally was what I was speaking to. There's no legal thing saying that says 3 beds split 4 ways. Or that the OP is entitled to beds and furniture for equality sake.

And no I wasn't talking about people getting along. I was saying people often split actual possessions up by interests. You wouldn't just split up physically the tools and give some to people who don't care about it in the name of equality. What your example above is about is splitting so people have an agreed upon decision of what is fair in intrinsic value whatever that is to be determined as. So someone takes the tools (for example's sake all of them) someone else gets something different and it's agreed upon this is a fair division. Still that's about stuff which is different that money. And if only 2 tools are kept, the rest goes to assets pool where money comes into play to then be split.

The OP's situation as we know it isn't about selling the assets and house and getting her share which is monies/financial stuff. As far as we know it it's about stuff, physical stuff as well as people living there and should they be allowed to as opposed to the house being sold or the others being bought out.
 
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Lilsia

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 17, 2018
Does someone have power of attorney for your parents? Who is taking care of all of their finances and such? It would probably be better to sell the house before your parents die, depending on what State they live in. I would also get a hold of their will. It would be great if your child and their cousin could share the house. I would also be concerned with the friends living in it. Who knows how they are treating the property. You probably have to have a serious discussion with all of your siblings, whether the like it or not, and let them know that they are not any more "owed" your parent's property then you are. And they can even be sued if they cause damage to the property and lower it's value. You have every right to go in and take what they are disposing. I went through something similar with my grandma. My brother tried to push my sister and me out and take over the house. Then he tried to low ball us saying that he would buy it for $100,000 less then it was worth. Some people are just greedy. I would make sure that your siblings are not trying to get your parents to sign a new will to leave you out. Talk to your parents if that is possible and probably get a lawyer at this point.
 

SteveH

Where's my Mai Tai?
Joined
Sep 8, 1999
These situations can get very ugly. Wills and attorneys will need to be involved. Unless the parents have authorized the kids, then yes I'd say they should be paying rent or it can be deducted from the sale of the assets. But it's not going to be a fun situation to deal with.

When my dad had his stroke I had the power of attorney, executor of the estate and the only signer on the checking account. I always tried to be open and transparent, even hired the attorney my brother recommended. What he didn't know is my dad had documented everything, he'd helped us buy our first house and I had disclosed that, however my brother never disclosed what my dad had done for him, but my dad had left that all behind in a safe deposit box for my eyes only. Attorney got everything and when it was all settled my brother was furious. It's been about 15 years since we've spoken. But I executed the will as per my fathers wishes.
 

PollyannaMom

I was a click-clack champ!!
Joined
May 16, 2006
I would not begrudge your nephew saving on rent by living in the house until things are settled, as it happens to be near his university and not your son's. That's just luck. (Of course, this is assuming they're taking care of the place!) It's probably safer than a house sitting empty.

But it would definitely bother me that your sister wants to throw everything out without you getting to have sentimental things you'd like. And you should all be privy to the official will/probate/whatever information.
 

stitch'sgirl

DIS Veteran
Joined
Nov 15, 2009
OP here, wow, thank you everyone so far that has chimed in and given advice and things to think about. I knew I could count on my DIS family!

I should have made it clear that my parents have both passed away, my mom about a month ago. I am so grateful for my brother who is holding it together for me!

Lots of suspect and hurtful things have happened, my sister delayed my mom's burial for 2 weeks so she could go camping - wouldn't pay for a funeral or visitation out of the estate - I could go on and on. Never in a million years did I think our family would be in this situation.

My brother called me to ask what I wanted and I am sure the girls will be shocked as they have claimed everything of value. My list includes a deck of cards, a Sharpie and a cookbook with my mom's handwriting. I just kind of want everything to be over with.
 

stitch'sgirl

DIS Veteran
Joined
Nov 15, 2009
Are your parents living and in assisted living, or are they deceased? They can't still own the house if they are deceased. The bequeaths of the will take over. If they are deceased, did they both die at the same time? Whomever died later, became the owner of the house IF they owned it jointly. That second parent still had to have made a will to say who the house goes to.

If there is no will then his/her estate goes to probate as the estate: the house and ALL possessions are split equally among ALL the children. You mentioned 4 of you. IF there are more, then it is split amongst them too. Probate takes a year or more. During that time, your sisters really shouldn't be getting rid of anything, (other than perishables and fire hazards,) as you and your brother have a right to things too. AND you have a right to enter the house without requiring permission. As a courtesy, you notify whomever is there that you are coming. And they make themselves decent for you to enter.

If the parent who died later did have a will, then that person should have stated who gets what, including the contents of the house. You need to find out who your parent's lawyer was and ask for a copy of the will to be emailed to you. And you need to find out who s/he designated as the executor of the estate is. Even if it's one of your sisters, and she would like to pretend she has absolute power and authority, she has to follow certain laws and again, not just toss everything out.

You and your brother have a RIGHT to see the will if you both are named in it. You also have your rights during probate. If one or both parents are still alive, then it doesn't matter what the will says as it's not in effect yet. With the exception of, if the one parent who did die already, was sole owner of the house and left the house to one of you and not the surviving spouse.

You also mentioned your parents went to a group home. That throws a wrench in things if it was state assisted, as the state or some authority may say that the proceeds of their home goes toward paying for their time in the group home, or something like that. I don't know the ins & outs of that as we didn't have that situation. But, there is that wrench.

If one or both are still alive, then as a PP stated you or your brother need to go talk them or that parent and figure out what decisions are being made about the house and ALL the possessions.

And if there is someone staying there, you don't need "permission" as they don't own the house. You make arrangements as to when would be a good time to come, but they can't act like they can keep you or your brother out. That person doesn't own the house.
Thank you this gives me hope. But I also need to take action before that dumpster arrives! The "how" is where I am unsure of.
 

stitch'sgirl

DIS Veteran
Joined
Nov 15, 2009
Oh my, just want to wish you luck and May calmness prevail. First a visit to parents , perhaps she knew and figured.. it was empty? But Taxes? Bills, maintenance? U and ur brother should visit Together. If parents mental health affected.. find the WILL and be sure They are protected. They just might need that house money for their longer care. Good luck and hope it’s resolved and Everyone remembers, it’s ur parents who Deserve to be treated with Respect and Kindness. Blessings to them.
Thank you 🥰
 

kymom99

DIS Veteran
Joined
May 24, 2008
Do you know who is named executor of the will? Did you pay for the funeral? Please let us know what you figure out.
 










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