When someone dies, their property must go through the probate process before it can be transferred to their heirs. The probate procedure involves the sale of the deceased person’s residence and other property. Specific circumstances must be met while selling a home during probate, therefore it’s important to know about the process. It can be time-consuming and expensive. Luckily, there are ways to avoid probate altogether.
Selling a house under probate can be a hassle and you may find that it takes a lot of time. This can lead to losing valuable revenue and possibly the property itself. If you just want to get rid of the house as soon as possible, then that extra hassle might not be something you’re interested in. Luckily, there are ways to avoid probate altogether.
Table of Contents
•What is Probate
•What is an Executor
•How Long the Probate Process Will Take
•6 Ways to Avoid Probate
➥A Living Trust
➥A Testamentary Trust
➥Jointly Held Real Estate
➥Payable on Death (POD) Bank Accounts
➥Transfer on Death Brokerage Accounts
➥Life Insurance Policies
•Sell a House Without Going Through Probate
•Executor Sell a House Without Probate
•Planning to Sell a House to Avoid Probate
What is Probate?
Probate is a legal process that is required when someone passes away. This is a court-supervised process for distributing a deceased person’s assets including their house to their beneficiaries, or heirs.
Probate starts when you file a will with the court, and then also appoint an executor to carry out your wishes. The executor will need to file paperwork with the court, and they will also be responsible for managing and paying out any outstanding debts or liens on the deceased person’s property. Those debts need to be paid before any assets are distributed to the beneficiaries.
What is an Executor?
An executor, or personal representative, is in charge of making sure that all property and assets are accounted for during probate. They will also make sure that any outstanding debts are paid off before the distribution of assets takes place. This can be a lengthy process depending on how much work needs to be done and how many people need to sign off on the sale of the house and other assets.
How Long the Probate Process Will Take?
The probate process can take anywhere from a few months to over a year. In some cases, it can even take longer.
During this time, the house will likely be sitting vacant and there will be no one living in it. This can lead to the house falling into disrepair and becoming a target for vandals or squatters.
There are 6 Ways to Avoid Probate
Is an arrangement in which property, including real estate, is held by one person (the trustee) for the benefit of another (the beneficiary). The trustee has the legal right to manage the property for the beneficiary’s benefit
Is a type of living trust that is created by a will and becomes effective only after the death of the person who created the trust (the grantor).
It can be revocable or irrevocable. Trusts are revocable because they give the grantor the flexibility to change his or her mind about the trust arrangement. Revocable trusts become irrevocable upon the death of the grantor.
An irrevocable trust is one that cannot be changed or terminated by the grantor without the consent of the beneficiaries.
Living trusts are often used to avoid probate. Property that is held in a living trust does not need to go through probate because it is already owned by the trust.
3. Jointly Held Real Estate
Property that is held jointly with the right of survivorship passes to the surviving joint tenant(s) outside of probate. The deed or title to the property should be reviewed to make sure it includes language indicating that the owner is a joint tenant with rights of survivorship.
4. Payable on Death (POD) Bank Accounts
A POD account is an account at a bank or other financial institution that names a beneficiary who will receive the funds in the account upon the death of the account holder. The account holder retains complete control of the account during his or her lifetime and can change the beneficiary at any time.
5. Transfer on Death (TOD) Brokerage Accounts
A TOD brokerage account is an account at a broker-dealer that names a beneficiary who will receive the assets in the account upon the death of the account holder. The account holder retains complete control of the account during his or her lifetime and can change the beneficiary at any time.
6. Life Insurance Policies
If you own a life insurance policy, it is generally owned by either an individual or an irrevocable trust. Since life insurance policies are transferrable outside of probate by means of beneficiary designations, they do not need to go through probate when you pass away.
Ways to Sell Your House Fast Without Going Through Probate
- Sell your house directly to a cash buyer. Cash buyers are able to buy your home quickly and easily, without having to go through the lengthy process of probate court. These companies can typically offer you a fair price for your home in as little as 7 days and will handle all of the paperwork, inspections, and other details required in order to make the sale happen.
- Use an online estate agent platform. Online estate agents like ASAP Cash Offer offer homeowners similar services to traditional high street estate agents, but at a significantly reduced cost and with much more convenience for sellers, as everything is handled entirely online from start to finish. Using one of these platforms allows you to list your property on their website and receive offers from buyers who are interested in purchasing it.
- Find a probate company that buys houses. There are companies that specialize in buying houses from people who need to sell fast and don’t want to go through the probate process. These companies will make you an offer on your home and, if you accept, will take care of all the necessary paperwork and arrangements to complete the sale quickly.
No matter which option you choose, selling your house without going through probate is possible and can be a great way to save time and money.
Can an Executor Sell a House Without Probate?
The executor of the will, often an immediate family member or close friend, may have questions about whether they are allowed to sell the property without going through probate court. In most cases, this can be done as long as all necessary requirements for selling a house in probate court have been met.
The first step in deciding whether you can sell a house without probate is to check if there are any existing mortgage liens on the property. If there are no outstanding mortgages or other debt associated with the property, then you should be able to sell it with relative ease. You can also sell real estate held in an irrevocable trust outside of probate court, as long as the trust is not a grantor or revocable trust.
Are You Planning to Sell a House to Avoid Probate?
If a loved one has passed away without a will, it is important to seek professional legal guidance to ensure that everything is done properly and in accordance with the law. But if you are simply looking to sell your house quickly and without any hassles, we are here to help you!
ASAP Cash Offer buys houses directly from sellers in order to help them avoid the probate process. We are here to help you every step of the way and will make sure that the sale of your house is as smooth as possible.
We buy houses in any condition and can often close on the sale of your house within a week. Contact us at (805)427-8312 today to learn more about how we can help you sell your house fast.