When you inherit a home it can shift your financial standing unexpectedly. If you aren’t the only heir involved in the transaction then the process can get more complicated and you’ll have to coordinate with other people — most likely with other family members. You may need to hire a probate attorney to help you understand who needs to be involved and the best way to sell an inherited home if you don’t want to maintain property ownership. The steps involved can be overwhelming and having a basic understanding of the process before you get started can help.
Know who needs to be involved
Unless you are the only heir, you will have to work with multiple owners and heirs as part of the home selling process. A will may explain who the heirs are, but it may not designate one person to be the estate executor. If that is the case, then someone needs to be appointed You may even need to hire a mediator if you can’t easily determine who will be the personal representative for the estate. This person will take charge to keep the property in shape and pay property expenses before the home is sold.
Open a bank account for the estate
Once one of the heirs is appointed to be in charge, this person will need to open a bank account in the name of the estate to keep the finances organized. All heirs will need to agree on how the money in the account is managed. For example, it will be used to pay mortgage expenses, real estate agents fees, repairs, and any other property-related expenses.
Understand property-related expenses
It may not be clear what needs to be paid for, and unexpected expenses might come up. All heirs may not be in agreement about how to proceed with the house, and working with a financial advisor or probate attorney can help you move forward. You’ll need to research the mortgage balance and determine if any repairs need to be made before selling the house. The heirs will need to agree on the targeted timeline and dollar amount to receive from the home sale.
Hire a specialized real estate agent
With the extra considerations for selling an inherited home, hiring a specialized real estate agent can make the process easier and more efficient. When looking for an agent who has the skills to sell your inherited home, you can ask them about their history with this type of sale, and what their typical timeline is for selling homes, no matter what the circumstances are.
Weigh different selling options
If you need to sell a home quickly, you may also consider selling the home for cash. By selling a home for cash, you can skip many of the steps like staging, showing the home to potential buyers, and online marketing. Selling a home for cash may not bring in as much as going through a more standard home sale, and you may need to consult with all of the heirs involved or bring in a mediator to reach an agreement.
With more than one family member involved in the sale of an inherited home, the process may become more complicated. By following a plan and understanding the many options, you will be better prepared to get the task done, within an agreeable timeline.