My 87 yr old mother is hospitalized and unable to pay for flooded townhome after insurance. What are options if family can't help?

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My 87 year old mother is in the hospital after breaking a hip and is not really able to make decisions any more as she is suffering from memory loss. I am her daughter and as her POA I am taking over her finances. During her hospital stay a pipe burst in her townhome and flooded it to a point that it was condemned. She was supposed to come home from a visit to see family (she no longer drives so takes the train) and because of her fall and subsequent hospitalization, could not. She has no financial assets other than her townhome and has a fair amount of credit card debt. She had a very meager insurance policy on the townhome that is only going to pay for about $10,000 worth of damage (likely the damage will be a lot more). No one in the immediate family has the money to cover the damages and likely she will also have large hospital bills and expensive nursing care coming up. Should the family just turn the keys of her townhome over to the bank? What would be the ramifications to doing that? What are some other options for her? Is there any financial assistance she could apply for?

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Thanks. We are going to consult an elder law attorney and accountant before moving forward.
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Angell, so sorry to read about your Mom and her townhome. How many floors is this townhouse? I see from your profile that Mom has mobility issues. I know how that is with elders, my parents were in a multi-level home with many sets of stairs, and both were major fall risk. Telling them they should move for their own safety was like talking to a brick wall.

I was always under the impression that homeowner's insurance covered the cost of rebuilding a dwelling. Thus, I was curious how Mom was able to get a meager policy?
Unless this was some type of co-op apartment that had 2 level townhomes within the building.

At the age of 87, it is time for Mom not to worry about home ownership, real estate taxes, dwelling insurance, breaking water pipes, upcoming assessments where the building plans to replace all the windows, etc.

One suggestion is to meet with an Elder Law Attorney, who can give you ideas on what to do next regarding the damaged townhome. And to see how Mom's finances are for either Assisted Living, if she can be self-pay... or a move into a nursing home unless a family members is willing to take care of Mom at home, and has the time and energy to do so.

Let us know what you and Mom plan to do.
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I suggest that she file bankruptcy.

All the debt will stop...her social security and pensions are protected ... the injunction will halt any collections

Since she will likely end up in NH, Medicaid will be involved. There really isn't any reason to worry about her credit.
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I hope there is no one else on mother's credit card. If she has no funds, then there is nothing to pay the creditors with, and the family is not responsible for that debt. The CC company made a poor choice of who to extend credit to! You can send them a note that she is broke, 87, living off SSI, and suffering dementia: they will not be paid. The bank will likely not take a short sale, so it might need to go through the repossession process rather than the voluntary surrender. Medicaid is a safety net but you don't want to cut holes in it!
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Thanks. The city condemned the property...still determining stipulations needed to correct situation.
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If it really is a townhome or condo, there should be a "hoa" or management company. Most cover some blanket insurance on the building. Usually the interior of the home is the tenant's responsibility, but it is worth checking into.

Find out how much she owed on the property and ask a local realtor how much it could sell for in "as is" condition.

Who "condemned" it.....and what stipulations were made to correct it.? You may get bids to fix to get a clearance to sell it.

Good luck, just a few random thoughts for you.
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