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You just inherited a house: What now?

You just inherited the family home -- along with your two siblings. While you appreciate your parent's desire to provide for you, you aren't sure what happens next.

Your options after inheriting a home are pretty basic: You can live in it, sell it or rent it out. Simple enough, right?

Maybe not. Since you inherited the home with other people in presumably equal measure, making the decision about what to do with the house may get a little more complicated. Here are the things you and your siblings need to consider:

Are you all in agreement?

If even one of your siblings has a different idea about what should be done, you may need to negotiate an agreement carefully. Maybe your siblings want to keep the home as a rental and you'd rather have your share of the equity. Maybe you want to keep the home and live in it but your siblings want to sell. Either way, keeping the family peace can be difficult when there's a disagreement.

Can your siblings afford to buy you out (or vice-versa)?

The party that wants to sell the property might think that the easy solution is to ask their siblings to simply buy them out -- but that's not always possible. If the party that wants to keep the property has significant debts, a shaky income or other problems that could affect their ability to get a loan, buying out the other heirs may not be immediately feasible.

Do you all agree on the property's value?

Even if a loan is possible for the heirs that want to buy, there may be a dispute over the property's true value -- especially if it needs some repairs. If one sibling has overestimated the value of the home, that could lead to significant tensions.

Disputes over how to dispose of inherited real estate are common. An experienced advocate can often serve as a voice of wisdom and guide you through.

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