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How do I add property to an already existing revocable trust? can I identify the items, sign it, and store it with the trust?

Cincinnati, OH |

I have items that were not included when I originally made my trust. Do I have to redo my trust from scratch in order that these items are included? Or can I add these items myself without an attorney to the existing trust document?

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Attorney answers 4


Depends what type of assets. If the trust is still saying what you want, you don't have to change the trust, although if it has been a while since the trust was created, having a regular review by an attorney is advisable. Outside of that, it is usually easy to place assets in the existing trust; Real estate goes in by deed, accounts typically need to be owned by the trust so you need to speak to the bank,etc. to get the proper forms. You may also want to make life insurance payable to the trust via beneficiary designations. Personal property can typically be assigned to the trust via "quitclaim bill of sale".

This is not legal advice nor intended to create an attorney-client relationship. The information provided here is informational in nature only. This attorney may not be licensed in the jurisdiction which you have a question about so the answer could be only general in nature. Visit Steve Zelinger's website:



It is great that you are adding assets to your trust. In addition to other advice provided, please note that there are assets that cannot be transferred to the trust unless you have specific authority to do so.

For example:
If you are married, even though Ohio is a separate property state, marital property is considered equal "contribution-distribution" , wherein property obtained during the marriage belongs equally to both spouses;
If you are married and you are transferring your spouse's property to the trust without permission; or
If you are married your spouse is incapacitated and there is no durable power of attorney.

Generally, depending on the asset, you should be able to transfer the asset on your own.

Good luck.


It sounds like you did a "do it yourself" trust and don't really understand what you have done. That is dangerous ... and is penny-wise-and-pound-foolish.

Having said that, a living trust can own most any type of assets, with only a few exceptions. The trustee of a trust can open accounts, purchase and own real estate, own tangible personal property. It can also be a beneficiary of assets. There are, however, some assets it cannot own and some assets it can own, but probably shouldn't.

Mr. Huddleston is an Ohio-Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust & Probate Law, with offices in Columbus and Dayton, serving client families and private business owners throughout Ohio. He may be contacted directly by phone toll-free at 888.488.7878 or by email CLH@HUDDLAW.COM. Mr. Huddleston responds to Avvo questions as a public service to help educate and provide general guidance to questioners, but his responses are not legal advice and do not create an attorney-client relationship.


I agree with everyone else and would just add that you can add personal property to the trust by simply listing in an appendix of the trust.

Please remember that I have provided general legal advice and have not agreed to represent you in this matter.

Wilson Alexander Smith

Wilson Alexander Smith


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