Take inventory of the deceased person’s assets, such as bank and investment accounts, primary residence, investment property, vehicles, jewelry, furniture, pets, art and life insurance. Executors are also responsible for paying whatever debts the deceased person may have left behind. These can consist of credit card bills, homeowner’s association fees, property taxes, car note and a range of other things. As executor of an estate; once this is done, you may then distribute what is left to the heirs.
Apart from paying any debts and taxes the decedent may have left behind, one of the biggest tasks for an executor is ensuring that any property in the estate is properly taken care of and secured. Most times the decedent’s primary residence is the asset that holds the greatest amount of value in ‘the estate’.
Because of this, it is important to ensure that the home is secured and that it is properly insured. If there is an outstanding mortgage on the property, continue to make timely payments. Pay HOA fees if the home is governed by an association. Unfortunately; ‘death’ doesn’t forgive any debt owed against the property. You may also want to consider changing the exterior locks to the home. Continue to maintain the property by keeping the grass cut, trimming and pruning trees and plants. Additional costs may also be added to ‘the estate’ from code enforcement or the homeowners association if yard maintenance is ignored.