Buying a Home with Physical Location Privacy

Buying a home in the United States, by default, means that your name and the address of your home will become public information. Data brokers unethically scrape this information and combine it with digital data harvesting. Law Enforcement organizations use it. Stalkers use it.

This is considerably problematic for people in witness protection programs, or domestic violence survivors. In Washington state, these people can be a part of the Washington State Address Confidentiality Program. The ACP program does nothing for people who are or want to become home owners.

After speaking to a Washington state attorney about this problem, this is a plan that might work for you. One big problem is that not all home loan lenders will support it, so it might be important for you to find one that does.

The ultimate goal here is to “close” on the purchase of a property in a fashion where your name would not appear on any recorded documents.

  1. Law office prepare a revocable living trust consistent with Bank/Credit Union/Lender requirements;
  2. The trustee of the trust is a LLC to avoid your being named on the deed;
  3. The borrowers on the note are the trust and you individually; and
  4. The grantor of the deed of trust would be the trust.

Under this approach, you would remain personally liable for the monies and the trust would be the title holder.

This approach is contrary to the requirement that the trustee of the trust be the borrower. However, you would remain personally liable for the amount owed under the note. The sole purpose of the LLC would be to sign for the trust in order to avoid your name appearing on recorded documents.

One benefit of being in the Washington State ACP is that you can file an LLC using your Secretary of State provided PO BOX. It’s not a perfect solution since one could simply look up the LLC and see who the owners are. One solution to this problem might be working with your attorney for their law office to be the legal owner of the LLC on your behalf.

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