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Overview of qualified personal residence trusts

A qualified personal residence trust is an estate planning strategy that may help some homeowners in Ohio to reduce the gift and estate taxes that they owe. Though a QPRT is not necessarily a good estate planning tool for every homeowner, it can have many benefits.

A property owner who sets up a QPRT will fund the trust with the deed to their home and designate a beneficiary who will receive the home as a gift after a designated period of time. The value of the home will be frozen at the time that the trust is created so that the amount of the gift will stay the same even if the home's value goes up significantly.

Before the beneficiary of a QPRT becomes the owner of the home, the original homeowner may continue to live in the home without paying rent. When the trust terminates, the original homeowner must pay rent to the new homeowner as long as they continue to live in the home. For some people, paying rent to the beneficiary of their QPRT is another way to transfer some of their wealth to the beneficiary without paying any gift or estate taxes.

One reason that a QPRT does not always work is that the person who created the trust must be alive when the trust terminates. If the original homeowner dies before the trust terminates, the home will become part of the person's estate, and the home will be assessed at its current market value. An estate planning attorney may be able to help clients to decide whether they should create a QPRT and on what terms.

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