Are You Selling a House in Probate?

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Selling a house during probate can be a daunting task during an already challenging time. When a loved one passes away and leaves property behind, the legal process of probate comes into play.

In addition to navigating the emotional aspects of loss, the complexities of probate can add another layer of stress. Probate is the legal procedure that validates a deceased person’s will and settles their estate, including the sale of any property they owned.

Here, we outline the steps involved in selling a house in probate, offering guidance and support for those facing this unique situation.


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Selling A House In Probate

What is probate?

Probate is a legal process that occurs after someone’s death to validate their will and settle their estate. During probate, a court overseeing the distribution of the deceased person’s assets will ensure that any debts, taxes, and expenses are paid off.

The process typically includes appointing an executor or administrator. They will gather the deceased person’s assets, settle their debts, and distribute the remaining assets to beneficiaries or heirs. The purpose of probate is to ensure that the deceased person’s wishes, as expressed in their will or in accordance with intestacy laws, and to ensure the proper management of the estate.

When is probate required?

Probate is typically required in England or Wales when a person dies and leaves property or substantial assets solely in their name.

If a bank requests a Grant of Probate or Grant of Letters of Administration (also known as a Grant of Representation), it indicates that probate is likely needed. These grants are often necessary to access and distribute the deceased person’s assets, demonstrating the need for probate in such cases.

How to apply for probate

While the basic purpose of probate remains the same in both cases, the specific application process and the legal requirements may differ depending on whether there is a will or not.

Applying for probate with a will. When there is a valid will, the process is usually known as applying for a Grant of Probate. In this process, the executor named in the will is responsible for applying for probate. They will handle the estate administration, following the instructions outlined in the will.

Applying for probate without a will. When a person dies without a will (or their will is deemed invalid), the process is known as applying for a grant of letters of administration. In this process, the court will appoint an administrator. This is usually a close family member. They will manage the estate and distribute the assets according to the laws of intestacy.

Selling a probate house

When it comes to selling a probate house, the requirements differ based on how the property is held.

If the house is solely owned by the deceased person, obtaining probate is necessary before selling.

In the case of joint tenancy, where the property is jointly owned and one co-owner survives, they can sell the house in probate by providing a copy of the deceased person’s death certificate.

However, if the property is held as tenants in common, probate will be required to proceed with the sale. Understanding the ownership structure is crucial in determining the probate requirements for selling a house in such circumstances.

You can receive a free cash offer  from We Buy Any Home if you’re selling a house in probate.

Make an offer on probate property

If you want to make an offer on a probate property, rest assured, the process is quite similar to making an offer on any other property.

The executors may have a valuation of the property for inheritance tax purposes. However, your offer will typically be based on the current market values.

It’s important to conduct your own research and consider factors such as comparable sales and the condition of the property. Working with a real estate agent or solicitor experienced in probate sales can provide valuable guidance throughout the offer process, ensuring a smooth transaction for both parties involved.

Start the cash house buying process today with our team of property experts.

Gain peace of mind when selling your house in probate with We Buy Any Home. Here’s how it works:

Fill in the online form. Call us on 0800 774 0004 or fill in your details online through our Valuation Form.

Step 1

Fill in the online form. Call us on 0800 774 0004 or fill in your details online through our Valuation Form.

Step 2

Receive offer. Once we’ve received the details of your property, we will make you an offer within 24 hours.

Step 3

Sale agreed. The sale will be agreed! Sit back, relax, and let us take care of all the work.

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Frequently asked questions when selling a house in probate

Want to discuss a little further? Freephone 0800 774 0004 or call our office 0203 789 2401

What are the steps of selling a house with probate?

If you are selling a house in probate, there are several steps to follow and certain factors you should be aware of:

  1. Register the death. During the process of applying for probate, you will need to provide a death certificate. You may also need to provide an original copy of the will.
  2. Get a property valuation. You need to know the value of the property to apply for a Grant of Probate. It is useful to gather valuations from two or three estate agents. You can use the average valuation in your probate application.
  3. Check the property’s titles and deeds. You need to do this when selling any property. This step ensures that you are aware of any restrictions on the property. If you cannot find these digitally through the Land Registry, you should be able to find them in paper title deeds. Paper title deeds are likely to be with the deceased person’s solicitor.
  4. Pay Inheritance Tax. Before probate can be granted, the inheritance tax from the deceased person’s estate must be paid. This can sometimes be costly or unaffordable. A Direct Payment Scheme may allow you to use funds from the estate to pay the tax. Alternatively, an Executor’s loan can help to alleviate any financial stress during this period.
  5. Apply for Grant of Probate. Finally, complete your application for Probate. This will usually incur a fee. The property can be listed on the market and sold. Alternatively, you can also sell the property to cash house buyers We Buy Any Home.

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How long does probate take?

Selling a house through probate can typically take longer than a usual house sale. Probate can usually take between six and 12 weeks from applying to receiving the Grant of Probate. However, during this time, the property can still be put on sale. However, if an offer is made, you must wait until the Grant of Probate before the sale can be completed.

That being said, properties in probate that are vacant can be encouraging for home buyers who are seeking a purchase without a chain as there is little chance for disruption in the buying process. You can also receive an offer on the property within minutes from WeBuyAnyHome.com. Receive your free cash offer  now.

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Does probate stop you from selling a house?

Probate doesn’t prevent you from listing a property for sale. However, Grant of Probate is required to complete the sale. Receiving probate can usually take between six and 12 weeks from your application being submitted.

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Can the executor sell a house that is in probate?

The executor of an estate can sell a house that is in probate, provided that this authority is explicitly outlined in the deceased’s will or granted by the court. However, the executor needs to conduct due diligence to ensure there are no surviving joint owners with legal rights to the property.

Additionally, the executor must carefully examine the will for any clauses that might impose restrictions on selling the property. By confirming these factors, the executor can proceed with confidence in carrying out their responsibilities to sell the house during the probate process.

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