This is typically done through a Trust Transfer Deed or a Quitclaim Deed. The document which gets recorded with the local Recorder’s Office in the county where the property is located consists of language transferring title from the current Grantors to the Trustees of the trust. In California, we also file what is called a Preliminary Change of Ownership Report so that we do not trigger a reassessment or transfer tax on the property. Proposition 13 allows for several exemptions for this purpose and transfers to a revocable trust is one of the exemptions.

If the current Grantors are married and they intend the property to be a community property asset, it is advisable to move title from joint tenancy first and then file the Trust Transfer Deed or Quitclaim Deed to the trust. This will ensure evidence that the asset was intended to be a community property asset and is therefore entitled to the double step-up in basis at the death of the first spouse for capital gain purposes.