The Necessary Steps for Selling an Estate

Death can cause a lot of confusion for those left behind, especially when there are financial matters involved. A parent or loved one may leave behind a home or property that must be sold. This involves a process known as probate and other legal matters that follow.

When your loved one dies, the last thing you want to do is deal with the issues that may arise. Nor do you want a long and tedious process. But you’ll need to be patient and remember to understand that these things take time, just like the grieving process.

Don’t get lost in the numbers and confusion of selling an estate. Be prepared with the tips listed here. Keep reading to learn more.

The Necessary Steps for Selling an Estate
The Necessary Steps for Selling an Estate

The Logistics

When someone dies, unfortunately, there are a lot of legal issues that arise. If your loved one owned a home that was passed down to you and/or other loved ones, you’ll need to prepare for what happens with the house before you can sell it.

Will Goes to Probate

The attorney that handles the will can help you make sure the will goes into probate. Probate is simply an authentication process to ensure assets, final bills, and taxes are designated appropriately. At this point in the process, you can appoint an executor to the estate.

When everything has been verified, a probate judge will begin the transfer of assets and the deed of the home. Here, a portion of funds from the estate will get held back for maintenance and other costs associated with the sale of the home.

Proceeds from the sale of the home will not distribute until the home sells. You cannot sell a home until after it has gone to probate.

Determine and Pay Ongoing Costs

If there is a mortgage on the home it is important to keep up with the payments. Likewise, homeowner’s association fees, taxes, and monthly bills should be maintained.

An attorney can help the executor of the estate plan for and take care of these expenses if there are any.

Not keeping up with these bills could cost you in penalties and fees related to the estate. Also, the home could fall into foreclosure if monthly mortgage payments are not paid. There are other problems that could arise, like freezing pipes, if these costs are not maintained.

Get an Appraisal

It’s important for tax purposes and the general sale of the home that you get an appraisal when selling an estate. You can have this done with your real estate agent or a certified appraiser. This will be important relating taxes owed at the time the home sells.

Make sure the appraiser knows about special characteristics of the house like additions and basement access.

Discussions and Roles

It’s important to pull all of those involved in the estate together to discuss outcomes and roles in the estate sale process. You will want to have your attorney present at these meetings. Your focus should be on helping each other grieve and also understand the process equally.

You can assign one person to take legal responsibility for transactions of the estate. Consider this person the executor of the estate and he or she can relay proceedings to other heirs.

The Necessary Steps for Selling an Estate

Preparing the House for Market

Selling an estate home is just like selling any other home. You must prepare it to sell. There are a few areas of focus that you should try to hone in on before you present the home to buyers. Follow this guide to learn more:

Hire an Agent

One of the best things you can do for selling an estate is to hire a real estate agent to list your home. An agent can help guide you through what needs to be done to the home to help it sell and make other recommendations.

Rest assured that an agent will point out all the key features of the home to potential buyers and advise you on changes to be made. They are an invaluable source for contractors and other professionals you may need to help sell the home.

Clear Personal Items

It may be emotional, but you’ll need to clear out personal items from the deceased. This could include office paperwork and collectibles throughout the home.

This may be the time when you prefer to separate or go through your loved one’s belongings and divide things among the heirs. Anything that you can remove from the house will benefit the sale.


Of course, you need to make sure the house is clean. Go through it once and twice and again if necessary. Or hire a cleaning service to ensure the house is free of debris and a buildup of dirt.

What’s the best way to ensure the house is clean enough to sell? When you would feel comfortable enough entertaining there.


Especially if your loved one was elderly, there may be several repairs necessary on the home. It’s important to make sure these are all taken care of before selling an estate. Not only will it improve the value of the home, it will increase the likelihood of getting purchased.

Talk to your real estate agent about which repairs are most important and which will raise the value, first.

Estate or Yard Sale

There are going to be things left over that you simply cannot keep. You can donate some of it to charity or you can have an estate sale to clear items left over from your loved one’s long life.

This is a handy way to get rid of furniture and other items that may not be appealing to buyers.


Whatever is left over when you’re done cleaning and removing items from the home, make sure it’s not cluttered. Move furniture and trinkets so that walkways and main spaces are clear. Get rid of extra items that take up space.

Your real estate agent can help you ‘stage’ the home to help buyers see ways they might like to arrange the home for themselves.

The Necessary Steps for Selling an Estate

Selling An Estate

Selling an estate is an emotional time for all involved. You may want to sell the house fast and be done with the logistics of it all. You want to move forward and not be held back by stress and bitter memories.

There is an easier way to sell your home that’s been left to you by a loved one. You don’t have to be stuck with something that you don’t want.

If you’re ready to sell a house and don’t feel like waiting around for a buyer, contact us. We’ll buy your house for cash, fast.

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