I Deeded My Property to Someone Else. Can I Revoke My Gift?

Giver’s regret isn’t unusual. A desire to void the gift of a home after transferring the deed could happen for various reasons. Perhaps you recovered from a serious illness and could really use that home after all. Or maybe your tax expert told you that letting someone wait to inherit your home would be better for the beneficiary, or for you. Perhaps you just don’t like the way your recipient is behaving, and now feel you made a mistake by giving your home away to an irresponsible person.

And now you need answers. Can you take back the deed that you transferred?

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House Gift: Transferring Your Arizona or Florida Home Through a Gift Deed

Image of gift envelopes with a ribbon and a pencil. Article about real estate gift deeds specific to Arizona and Florida.

Using a gift deed, you can transfer your home to a new owner. The transfer of a gift deed occurs among friends and relatives, or between donors and charities. The giver of the gift deed, formally known as a grantor or donor, conveys the home to the recipient or donee while the donor is alive.

The special hallmark of the gift deed is its transfer of real property between people with no consideration. Only use it if no money and nothing of value is given for the home. (Careful, though: to the IRS, a house sold for a dollar is still a gift.)

Here, we shine a spotlight on the gift deed from some specific angles:

  • We’ll zoom in on two places where many of our clients and readers love to give: Arizona and Florida.
  • We’ll discuss the tax implications of your gift deed.
  • We’ll outline the alternative ways you can give your home away or transfer its inherent value to your loved ones.

So, if you’re feeling generous, read on!

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The Gift of Real Estate: What You Need to Know

Image of a gift box with a red bow. Captioned: The Gift of Real Estate, What You Need to Know.

Making a home into a gift involves a gift deed. The gift deed legally transfers the title of the property from you, the grantor or donor, to another person or entity. This type of conveyance may be used to convey property as a gift from one family member to another, or to donate property to a nonprofit.

A mere promise to convey the property at some point in the future does not constitute a legally sound gift. A properly drafted deed makes a gift outright—a conveyance for no consideration. In other words, the giver makes the gift unequivocally, with no compensation expected, and no strings attached.

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Refusing to Accept a Deed

image of an unsigned deed captioned refusing to accept the deed

For a valid real estate deed conveyance, two key actions must occur:

  • The giver (called the grantor) must deliver it the recipient (called the grantee).
  • The grantee must accept it.

A Recipient May Refuse to Accept a Deed.

Circumstances are not always right for taking on new ownership and new responsibilities. Moreover, not every piece of real property is desirable. Even with a significant estimated value, it might have hidden liabilities.

Thus, the gift of a deed can, and sometimes should, be turned down.   

This can get difficult if the grantor has the conveyance recorded with the county anyway, without the grantee’s knowledge. The grantee will then be obliged to file a court petition to void the conveyance.

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Gift Deeds and Gifts of Real Property

A gift deed, or deed of gift, is a legal document voluntarily transferring title to real property from one party (the grantor or donor) to another (the grantee or donee), typically between family members or close friends. Gift deeds are also used to donate to a non-profit organization or charity. The deed serves as proof that the transfer is indeed a gift and without consideration (any conditions or form of compensation).

Gift Deeds and Gifts of Real Property
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