Can I Sell the Deceased’s Home Before Receiving a Grant of Probate?

Sell the Deceased’s Home

When an individual dies, an executor is appointed to take care of all of their belongings and ensure the beneficiaries of the will receive the assets that they are due. A lot of assets need to go into probate. Whether they do or not will depend on whether they were jointly owned and also the value of these assets.

What Is Probate?

Probate is essentially the process which is involved in dealing with the money, property and possessions of a person who has passed away. Probate can apply regardless of whether there is a valid will in place or not. Before any of the beneficiaries of a will or the next of kin if there is no will in place, can claim, sell or transfer any of the assets that have been left to them, they might have to apply for what is known as a grant of probate.

What is a Grant of Probate?

A grant of probate is something which is needed before executors are able to access the deceased’s bank accounts, sell assets or settle any kind of debts that have been incurred. It is worth noting that the document in question is only ever referred to as a grant of probate if the deceased left a valid will; if they didn’t, then the document is known as a grant of letters of administration. Though they have different names, they both work in similar ways as they give a person legal authority to deal with the estate of the deceased.

Once probate has been granted, the next of kin of the executor of the will is in a position where they are able to begin dealing with the assets of the deceased. If there is a will then chances are it will lay out how all of these different assets should be distributed. If the person died and they didn’t have a will, then a law has been established that clearly sets out who should receive what.

Can You Sell the Deceased’s Property Without a Grant of Probate

Usually, the executor of a will is going to look to sell the deceased’s property because the funds raised as a result can be used as a means to pay off any debts that the deceased had outstanding at the time of death. Afterwards, these assets can then be passed on to the beneficiaries of the estate. It is no surprise the executor would want to sell the property as quick as possible and, therefore might not love the idea of having to wait to receive a grant of probate. So, is there anything they can do in the meantime?

The good news is that you are able to put a property up for sale before probate has been granted. The bad news is that though you can put it up for sale, you are unable to complete that sale until the grant of probate has been issued by the registry. This can naturally be an issue for both the buyer and the seller due to the fact that managing to get probate can be a reasonably long process.

What Should You Do If You Are Selling a Property on Probate?

If you are an executor or have been granted the letters of administration, then it is down to you to ensure that the estate is managed in an efficient manner. In order to complete any property sale, you would need a grant of probate/letters of administration.

As the executor, you are going to need to have knowledge of how much the property is worth, as this will result in you being able to calculate the value of the estate (this is important because it helps the beneficiaries know what kind of inheritance tax they will have to pay). This is why it makes sense for people to get the property on the market before probate is granted because in doing so, they will have a ballpark figure of what they’re likely to get for it. The revenue office will usually expect the executor to make more than one valuation; therefore, they would normally get around three.

It’s important to get these valuations in because, with an average estate, the value of the property usually forms a huge part of it. If there is work that you would like to do on the property before putting it on the market, then this should be carried out as soon as possible. Work includes giving the property a good clean and having an air out. You also might want to add a fresh touch of paint and even bring in some flowers to brighten the place up.

You are able to agree to a sale before you have received a grant of probate, and then once you have applied for and gotten a grant, you are going to be in a position to exchange contracts with the buyer. Once this is done, they are legally obliged to buy the property and are unable to pull out of the sale without incurring further fees.

Selling a Property Without a Grant of Probate

When someone passes away, their estate is taken care of by an executor who will need to sell off assets in order to pay off the debts of the deceased before the remaining assets are then passed on to the beneficiaries or the next of kin. A lot of the deceased’s assets (depending on ownership and value) will need to go into probate. To do this, a grant of probate is required.

Obtaining a grant of probate can sometimes take a while and as such, a lot of executors want to sell the deceased’s property before it is received. It is possible to put a property on the market before getting a grant of probate; however, until the grant is received, the sale cannot be completed.

If you are hoping to get a grant of probate as soon as possible, then you may want to consider getting one online. Probates online are on hand to help you obtain probate quickly. If you would like our assistance, please do not hesitate to get in touch.