For homebuyers who are relatively new to probate, getting into this line of buying and selling can be an excellent investment opportunity being that the market is relatively small and not competitive. However, before making offers on probate properties, it’s important to be aware of the forms to use, disclosures, time constraints, and additional probate information.
Though the sudden death of a loved one can bring about a lot of stress, including the financial strain of having real estate burdens to deal with, it’s highly advisable to be aware of the following concepts before selling a probate property.
What is a Personal Representative?
When a piece of real estate is left to an heir, and it is neither part of a trust nor is it instructed in a deceased person’s will, the probate court system then has to appoint a personal representative or administrator to the estate.
However, when there is a will that lists the name of a personal representative or executor, the named person is then responsible for adhering to the instructions that are listed in the will. The representative must see to it that items listed in the will are disbursed to the correct recipient, lest he or she runs the risk of being sued by the beneficiaries for fraud or mishandling of the listed assets.
This process is to be overseen by a court so that ownership of the property is transferred to the heirs listed in the will. Alternatively, the property can be sold and the profits distributed to the heirs.
The term “as-is” may come up whether you’re buying or selling probate property in the Pittsburgh area. As such, it’s important to be well aware of what this term means.
For buyers and sellers of probate property, “as-is” condition means that there is no way to make demands for any sort of repairs to the home before a sale closes. Unlike traditional real estate where contracts can include contingencies the seller needs to meet, the as-is condition signifies that there is absolutely no responsibility on the seller to make changes to the home’s current condition in order to complete a sale.
Pennsylvania State Laws
Probate laws vary from state to state, and as such, it’s a good idea to familiarize oneself with them before attempting to buy or sell a probate property.
For example, when an individual passes away without a will, their death is referred to as “intestate.” This means that a personal representative may be relatively unaware of what steps they should take in order to disburse assets.
Unfortunately for those involved, when it comes to probate laws, there is no time to wait around. Important deadlines have to be met and the correct forms need to be filed within a certain time constraint. Should an individual find himself or herself in this situation, it’s a good idea to speak to a professional about the process as soon as possible. If a probate property is not handled correctly, the transaction might be voided, which will only bring about more stress.
Working with Experts
Despite the fact that probate processes can be extremely complicated, there are professionals in the field that can be sought out for advice. In order to make the smartest decisions regarding the disbursement of assets, it’s in a new representative’s best interest to make sure that every aspect of the process is taken care of before deadlines approach.
When searching for a probate expert to work with, it’s wise to seek out an individual that possesses the following qualities:
- He/she listens carefully to the situation you describe.
- He/she is willing and able to meet your needs.
- He/she is well-informed and able to explain the probate process in ways that make sense to you.
- He/she can reference how many individuals they have assisted in their career.
- The expert you speak to should be part of a TEAM of experts, which helps assure that each part of the process can be met within a time constraint.
Fortunately, we meet all of these criteria. While each of these concerns can be an issue for new representatives, we are well-experienced and prepared to help you complete each step of the probate process on time.
We can help make selling probate property in the Pittsburgh-area easy and headache-free. We purchase probate properties directly and because this is part of our everyday business practices, we know each step like the backs of our hands.
If you’d like help getting through selling a probate property, feel free to send us a message or give us a call at 412-346-0523 to learn more!