A Slice Of Heaven In Montana Makes Perfect Gift to MSUAF

Cody and Joycelyn ChristmanCody and Joycelyn Christman enjoy their Montana cabin getaway. Living in the hustle and bustle of Denver, Colorado, the Christmans relish time spent in the Treasure State. Several years ago, they discovered that to pass the property on through their will filed in Colorado would require a separate probate action in Montana.

However, the Christmans learned later that Montana property owners whose primary residence is out of state could avoid the cost of a separate probate action by filing a “transfer on death deed” (formerly called a beneficiary deed). The current owner assigns the property deed to a beneficiary for a minimal filing fee. The beneficiary receives full ownership rights upon the death of the current owner.

Since Cody (’91) had always intended to name the Montana State University Alumni Foundation in his will, this property became an ideal asset to gift. And the Christmans appreciated that the transfer on death (TOD) deed is revocable if they were to have a change of heart.

More recently, when the Christmans acquired a lot adjacent to their cabin, they generously opted again to file a revocable transfer on death deed form assigning the property to the Montana State University Alumni Foundation upon their passing. They also found that filing the short form at the county courthouse where the property is located was very straightforward.

“Filling out the form with the property’s legal description, naming MSU Alumni Foundation as the beneficiary, and getting it notarized was easy,” Cody said.

With the Christman’s gift of real estate established by the TOD deed, MSUAF will gain full title to the property when Cody and Joycelyn pass away. Upon the sale of the property, the proceeds will be used as per the Christman’s intentions for MSU students studying electrical engineering and dietetics, and scholarships for Cody’s fraternity, Pi Kappa Alpha.

“Because MSU provided me with such a solid foundation for success, we wanted a new generation of Bobcats to have access to similar educational opportunities and college experiences — and to be able to pursue their degree more affordably,” Cody said.

Establishing your legacy at Montana State

Donating property to the benefit of Montana State can provide tax advantages and potentially relieve you of the day-to-day responsibilities of property ownership. Learn more about this smart way to give.

With a gift of real estate, you can establish a meaningful legacy at MSU that will inspire and energize students, faculty and programs now and beyond your lifetime. Contact Kevin Brown at 406-994-4815 and kevin.brown@msuaf.org to learn more.

required required required required required required required
Personal Estate Planning Kit Request Form

Please provide the following information to view the materials for planning your estate.

First name is required
Last Name is required
Please include an '@' in the email address