A home enters the probate process once the owner has passed. During probate, the court will validate the will and begin transferring all the assets of the deceased. The home has three potential paths it may take once in the probate process.
Transferred to Named Beneficiaries
Probate is made easier if there is a will in place, as well as designates who will receive specific assets. If the will lists a named beneficiary, then the executor of the estate will begin the process of transferring the home to that person. First, the executor needs to get permission from the court before they can access, change, or transfer the home. After they’ve received permission, they will follow the wishes outlined in the will.
Transferred to Next of Kin
There are several reasons a home will be transferred to the next of kin. The first option is if there is no will in place. Usually, the judge appoints the next of kin, usually a spouse or child, to receive the home. This also happens if there is a will, but it does not name any beneficiaries. If the home is owned jointly, such as with a spouse, then the joint owner will retain the home. The next of kin may also receive the home if there is no living trust in place or a transfer-at-death deed.
House Is Sold
The house will be sold if there are no beneficiaries or anyone else to receive the house. This usually happens in cases where there is no will. The executor of the estate is responsible for selling the home. The process varies depending on if the probate process is formal or informal. In a formal probate process, the executor will list the home as a probate sale and they will advertise the estate sale. Once offers are made, a hearing is held where potential buyers bid on the property. The court determines who the final buyer is. In an informal process, the executor will need to get permission from the court and then they sell the home normally.
If a home needs to be sold during probate, it’s ideal to sell it quickly. Working with a cash buyer can allow you to sell the home faster than a traditional sale. A cash sale also simplifies the overall sale process.
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