How to Record a Trust Transfer Deed

By Bryan Driscoll, J.D.

How to Record a Trust Transfer Deed

By Bryan Driscoll, J.D.

A trust transfer deed applies specifically to real estate and allows you to transfer your property into a trust. When you complete this process correctly, the deed preserves your property. The benefits of using this minimal-cost document include providing for a seamless transfer of real property, allowing you to keep control of the real estate in your capacity as administrator.

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The Process of Using a Trust Transfer Deed

Using this type of deed may seem simple, but it requires you to complete several steps to ensure your property is transferred correctly. These steps can vary a little by state, so check your state's requirements to be certain you create a valid document and deed(s).

1. Set up a trust.

The first step in transferring property is to set yourself as the administrator so that you can continue to manage your assets in this capacity. Once you set the trust up, you'll need to fund it, which doesn't mean only money—you can use real estate to fund it, which is where the trust transfer deed comes into play.

2. Create a trust transfer deed.

This deed transfers ownership of your real estate to the trust. Remember, you still keep control of the real estate if your document designates you as the administrator.

When creating this type of deed, you should consider running a title search on the property to ensure you have sufficient ownership to make a transfer. Once you're certain you can take this step, creating the deed doesn't get you all the way.

It's important to note here that if you are moving more than one property to the trust, you need to create a separate deed for each piece of real estate. Because of the necessary requirements, each deed must provide pertinent information specific to each piece of property, such as the legal description of it. As a result, each piece of property being transferred requires its own transfer deed.

3. File the deed with your county records office.

At this point, you must file the deed with your county records office. Because each county has specific requirements, be sure to check with your local records office before you file. Most counties also charge a filing fee.

This is an important step because potential buyers, any creditors, and government officials need to know the property has changed hands, even if that is just from you as an individual to your trust. If you don't file the deed with your county records office, then there can be legal consequences you would have to deal with, such as not being able to take out a home equity loan or having the house sold out from under you.

Transferring real estate to a trust is a process that needs to be carefully done. There are nuances involved in creating and filing such a deed which may impact the legality of your real estate transfer. Carefully review all of the information that you and others have prepared and re-check everything with the county records office to make sure that the trust has been successfully transferred.

This portion of the site is for informational purposes only. The content is not legal advice. The statements and opinions are the expression of author, not LegalZoom, and have not been evaluated by LegalZoom for accuracy, completeness, or changes in the law.