When somebody passes away, their estate becomes subject to either selling or transferring ownership. The specifics of how this is done can depend on certain individual factors. If the person were a joint tenant, the other tenant would immediately claim their share. This is known as the Rule of Survivorship. However, suppose it was a tenant in a common arrangement or the estate was held solely under one name. In that case, the estate must be bequeathed to beneficiaries, either by a Will or according to the Succession Act. These beneficiaries can then have the property transferred in their name, or the property can be sold during the probate process, with the proceeds going to the beneficiaries. Estate agents in Berkhamsted or other locations of the UK can assist you in selling a property in probate.
What is a Probate?
Probate is the process of getting permission from the court to handle a decedent’s estate. The administration of the decedent’s affairs is the responsibility of an Executor designated in the Will. Usually, a friend or family member of the deceased, you can name a professional Executor to handle the Probate procedure if you so wish. A Grant of Probate is typically required before an Executor may start administering a Will and paying any outstanding obligations. This process entails several stages, such as registering the death, appraising the estate, paying any owed inheritance taxes, and paying Probate fees.
What Does “Selling a House in Probate” Mean?
It’s crucial to be aware that selling a house while it is in probate may take a while. Before finalizing the sale, you must obtain a Grant of Probate, which can take several months. However, you can still appraise the property and list it for sale before Probate has been issued. If someone makes an offer on the property, you can accept it but can’t exchange contracts until after Probate.
Steps Involved in Selling a House During Probate?
Register the Death:
You will need to submit the death certificate for the Probate application process. You will also need to provide the original copy of the deceased’s Will.
Know the Value of the Property:
Knowing the property’s value is key to completing the Probate process, so arrange for two or three real estate agents to evaluate it and use the median valuation for the application.
Check the Title and Deeds of the Property:
You should review the property’s title and deeds to ensure there are no limitations on it or the surrounding land. You should be able to access such documents through the Land Registry, but if not, the deceased’s attorney may hold the paper title deeds.
Pay Inheritance Tax:
Before Probate can be granted, the inheritance tax on the late person’s estate must be settled. It may still need to be affordable due to your lack of access to the estate. Still, you can use the Direct Payment Scheme to pay the tax using funds from the estate, or you could apply for an Executor’s loan, which helps finance the period between getting Probate approved and handling the deceased’s affairs.
Apply for a Grant of Probate:
A Grant of Probate is a document that proves that a Will is valid and that its wishes should be carried out. The Probate Registry issues it and provides the executor with the legal authority to administer the deceased’s estate by the terms of their Will. To apply for a Grant of Probate, you must obtain a copy of the deceased person’s Will, obtain valuations of their assets, calculate any Inheritance Tax due, complete a Probate Application form and obtain certain documents such as a copy of the death certificate. You will then need to submit the application form and all the relevant documents to the Probate Registry, where it will be reviewed, and a decision about the grant will be made. If the application is successful, you will receive the documents granting you the power to administer the estate.
When you are looking into selling property in probate, there are a few considerations you should take into account. Government laws and taxes, the executor’s role in the process, the sale time frame, and the property’s condition should all be considered. Lastly, understanding the probate process and how it can be used to ensure a successful sale is key. By following these guidelines, you will be able to make sure you are making the best decisions when selling a property in probate.