Checklist: How to Sell Probate Property

Nov 17, 2020 | Probate

Don’t let an inherited property feel like a burden. Learn what you need to do to sell it and make sure you and your family earn a fair price.

No matter the circumstances, selling a house is an incredibly complex and time-consuming undertaking. However, inherited properties come with their own set of unique challenges that any executor of an estate needs to know before committing to a sale. We have this handy checklist to give you an idea of what to expect and the order in which you’ll need to take each step.

Selling an Inherited House Checklist

1.) Is the probate process done? Work with an attorney to ensure that all affairs of the estate, including court approval of the will, are settled before attempting to sell the inherited property. If there is no will, please refer to our guide on the intestate process in Georgia.

2.) Is the family in agreement? In addition, without a will you must meet with your family about how to divide up the estate. You may face serious problems if a consensus is not made.

3.) Have you paid the mortgage and utilities? Even when a home’s owner passes, their bills still need to get paid and respective providers will need to be notified of the changes. All costs, including the mortgage or rent, bills, and other debts, should be paid for out of the estate. Set up auto draft from the estate if the money is available. Otherwise, speak with a probate attorney and/or accountant to come up with a financial plan using the estate’s assets on debt. You should never have to pay out of your own pocket.

4.) Have you cleaned the house? A dirty, cluttered house isn’t likely to sell well, if it sells at all. Increase your chances of selling by sorting through the deceased’s belongings and thoroughly clean out the home for the best chance at finding a buyer. Our friends at Good News Junk Removal can help with sorting and hauling, and our other friends at Turnage Place Estates are available to assist you with appraising and selling furniture, antiques, heirlooms, and similar items.

5.) Have you made repairs? As with cleaning, investing in major repairs to the inherited home you’re trying to sell will greatly increase the chances of finding a buyer and receiving a fair price. Typically, repairs are paid for via the estate, but if there isn’t enough then sometimes family members will have to chip in.

6.) Have you listed it for sale? Regardless of whether or not you choose to work with a real estate agent, you’re going to need to make a listing with photos that make your house look appealing. If you aren’t getting any inquiries, you may want to look over the listing to see if any changes should be made to the writing and pictures.

7.) Have you taken an offer? Don’t take the first offer that comes your way. By taking your time to weigh your options and look at different offers, you can find the best price and arrangement. Some of them may request repairs or try to negotiate based on nearby sales. Another option is to sell to an as-is homebuyer like Arbor View Home Buyers if you can’t commit or don’t have the time to make repairs.

8.) Make a sale! Once you find the right offer and come to an agreement with the buyer, it’s time to go to close. After that, you’re done! Time to get some rest and decompress from the selling process.

Our Probate Guide for Georgia Residents

We created Georgia Probate Resources to serve as a comprehensive reference to all the ins and outs of probate, as well as related concerns. Executors deserve clear, concise information while they contend with the paperwork and meetings involved during the probate process. The following blogs may expand on the topics covered here to give you a more in-depth look at other situations you might expect to run into when selling an inherited home.

What to do with Inherited Belongings

What to do if You Inherit a Home with Tenants

Intestate Guide | My Loved One Died Without a Will. Now What?

How Does the Probate Process Work in Georgia?

I’m the Executor of an Estate. Now What?