If you are thinking of leaving your home to someone after you leave this earth, there are some careful things you need to consider.
Consider if it is wanted -When you are thinking of "gifting" your home to someone after you die, make sure they want it! Our homes are special things to US. For a lot of us who live in a place for years--we think of all the memories we have had there and how special of a place it is to us, but our home may not hold the same place in others hearts. (Even if it is your kids who grew up in that house!). If you leave something to someone who doesn't want it, it becomes a burden to that person--regardless of the intent. It also may leave a lasting regret when that person decides to sell it--making them feel they "let you down" in one way or another. The same goes if you want to leave your home to your church or a charity. Make sure you talk to whom you want to leave your home first.
Consider others - In a family situation, you need to think about how your "gift" will affect other family members as well. Leaving a home to one of your children and not the others may cause division in your kids--and you don't want that. Maybe only one of your kids really wants the house. Still talk to the others, see how they feel and make it fair for everyone involved. You don't want something you meant for good to end up hurting your family forever. I have seen this done the correct way in families--and incorrectly where damage was done that was never repaired. It's heartbreaking to see a family torn apart over a possession. Bottom line, that is what your home is: a possession.
Consider the Law - Let's say you have talked to everyone involved and explained what you want--make sure you get it in writing, in the proper way, with an attorney. Everyone hearing it from your mouth is important, but, sometimes people "hear" things differently, and you want to be sure everything is worded how you want it in your will or trust when you leave your home to someone. When people are grieving they sometimes want things they normally wouldn't have wanted and can feel like maybe someone else will take advantage. If you have it all sorted out--legally--it takes the pressure off anyone to remember exactly what you wanted. Also, if you change your mind about something, you need to let them know and get it changed ASAP because any changes at the end of your life without everyone knowing can also cause so much pain between family members.
Consider another way - Sometimes the best way to leave a legacy home to someone is not to leave it at all. What if ALL your kids want the house? You can't divide a house in half or more pieces. You can give the option of one of the kids "buying out" the other kids portion in the house, but what if only one of your kids could afford to do that? Is that fair? Will it cause hurt feelings? Maybe just stipulating selling the house upon your death is the best way to go, then they can have the proceeds equally. You can even stipulate what realty company to use (or realtor for that matter) so that there are no issues of who to use as well. Also, if you are "gifting" you home to charity or your church, they might not need a home for their parish, but, the money could be used for something else and if you have your home to be sold ahead of time, it takes all that work and effort off whomever you decide to gift it to as well.
Whatever you decide to do, keep good communication between you and those you love so they will know your wishes ahead of time, take into consideration how they feel about your decision, make sure you get it in writing and above all, you want your gift to be a true, loving blessing for someone, so do your best to keep it that way. Your true LEGACY is the love you leave behind.