If you’ve just found that you’re in charge of caring for a probate home, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed. The probate process can be quite complicated to navigate, especially if you’ve never had to do so before. Here are a few steps that you should follow when you have a house in probate.
What is Probate?
When a house isn’t legally and properly passed down after the passing of its owner, it goes into probate. This means that the state and probate court temporarily oversee ownership of the house while the prospective inheritor goes through legal proceedings to regain legal ownership. This process can take anywhere from a few months to a few years to complete. The legal proceedings of the probate process must take place in probate court. If you inherited a house through a living trust, community property law, joint ownership, or transfer-on-death deed, you shouldn’t need to go through the probate process.
How to Maintain the Home
While you’re going through the legal probate process, make sure that you’re maintaining the home in the meantime. This can help to maintain the condition and value of the home over time. Organizing the home can also be a cathartic process if you’re mourning the passing of a loved one. Sometimes, you might not live in the probate house if it isn’t your primary residence. You’ll have to be extra careful to maintain and protect the home if this is the case. For example, you might want to continue to pay for some utility bills or stop by the house regularly so it looks like someone is living there. This can help to protect the home from break-ins.
Sell for Cash Instead
If the prospect of going to probate court and maintaining the home over time seems too daunting and overwhelming, consider selling the probate home instead. Because of the complicated legal situation that a probate home is involved in, there are limited home buyers that will be willing to purchase it. Luckily, cash home buyers are one of the best buyers if you’re trying to sell a probate home. They’ll get you a personalized cash offer that will reflect the value of your home. They’ll also help you to sell your house within a few weeks without requiring you to repair or inspect the probate home.
So, if you’ve just discovered that you’re suddenly in charge of a probate home, remember that you should go to probate court to regain ownership of the property. Additionally, make sure that you maintain the home in the meantime. Finally, if you want to sell a probate home, remember that a cash buyer will be your best option.
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