Mother took out a promissory note on her house from the Iowa dept of rural development to get siding put on her home. The land and home are in her and my name. With her death am I responsible for paying off that note?
Did you co-sign the note? Was there a mortgage/deed of trust filed as a security instrument against the home as collateral for the money being lent? If there was a mortgage, it is a lien against the home itself, to which you are a vested owner, whereby delinquency in payments will/can allow for a foreclosure action...whereby you can face potential eviction. If you were simply an accommodation party (on the mortgage but NOT the promissory Note), the lender cannot pursue a deficiency judgment against you for the difference between the indebtedness owed, and the auctioned off amount...should said foreclosure action be seen to fruition. This is a gender response. Consult a local real estate attorney for more definitive guidance. Good luck to you.
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I am sorry for your loss. It depends on when and how you took title to the property and when she obtained the loan and whether a lien was recorded. Since there are a number of variables, I would suggest you consult with a real estate attorney in your area for specific advice. Just a couple of examples: If you are joint tenants, and you took title before the loan was given, and you did not sign the loan documents, and no mortgage or lien was recorded, perhaps you do not need to pay and the property now belongs entirely to you. If you were tenants in common, and you took title after the mortgage was recorded, you might only own a partial interest and the loan would have to be paid.
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If the note is secured by a lien on the property, you are probably going to need to pay it. You have not stated whether the ownership of the property is in joint tenancy with rights of survivorship or when your ownership interest was created. If you did not pay anything to become an owner of the property and your mother signed for a lien on her homestead there is a good possibility that the lien can be enforced. In addition, even if you do not need to open an estate, one can be opened by the creditor and in some instances joint tenancy property can be recovered by the estate for the payment of debts. You should consult with an attorney familiar with real estate and probate matters to determine exactly where you stand.
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