When a person dies, his or her estate must go through probate, which is a process overseen by a probate court. If the decendent leaves a will directing how his or her property should be distributed after death, the probate court must determine if it should be admitted to probate and given legal effect. If the decedent dies without leaving a will, the court appoints a Personal Representative to distribute the decedent’s property according to the laws of Descent and Distribution. These laws direct the distribution of inherited property and assets based on hereditary succession.
Check out our interview with First American Trust’s Nick Henry as well as Albrecht & Barney’s Jill Kinsey where we discuss trust administration and estate planning to set your family up in the most advantageous way:
Why Hire a Probate Realtor?
The time following the death of a loved one is stressful. If you are the executor of their estate, you’ll have a long list of to-do’s between notifying friends and family, arranging a final disposition, and planning a celebration of life, much less navigating through the grieving process. In the fog of your checklist, it may be tempting to hire a realtor you have worked with in the past. However, you could lose significant time and money by hiring someone who has little probate experience. Consider hiring a Probate Realtor like Jordan Bennett instead.
Do I Need a Probate Attorney AND Probate Realtor?
While it’s not required to have both a probate attorney and a probate realtor, it is recommended. Probate attorneys understand the process of liquidating the estate assets; however, they often have their hands full managing the court process. Hiring a realtor whose expertise is solely focused on the sale of the home will help this already-complicated process go more smoothly.
Can’t I Hire My Realtor-Friend?
You technically can, but we’d warn against it.
Due to state probate laws, property sales can be both subtly and significantly different from a traditional sale. Probate sales require different contracts/terms, have unique rules for timing and pricing, require “notice” actions at different stages of the sale, and in some cases, require court hearings to confirm the sale. An experienced probate realtor like Jordan Bennett will understand the actions required in each of these steps that a regular agent might not know. This expertise will prevent mistakes that could delay proceedings and cost more money in the long run.
What to Look for in a Probate Realtor
When considering your options in hiring a probate realtor, make sure they tick all of these boxes:
- A probate-specific marketing plan
- Contract documentation and disclosure forms for real property transactions
- Relationships with probate attorneys and/or law firms
- References of clients they have worked with
There are many other details to consider, but suffice it to say that when it comes to probate, trust and inherited property sales, not all REALTORS® are created equal. Fortunately, this process can be made easier by partnering with an organized and efficient professional that can liquidate the estate’s assets in the most profitable and dignified manner. Jordan Bennett & Associates can help you navigate the liquidation process with the least complications for you and your family.