What Is Probate And How To Sell A House In Probate In Utah

You’ve probably heard of inherited homes, foreclosed homes, and short sales. But have you heard of a probate sale? It’s important to be aware of what a house sold in probate means and what the process looks like, especially in Utah. Many buyers are on the lookout for properties sold in probate court as they often look like attractive deals, though there are pros and cons for both parties to consider. Let’s take a closer look at what exactly is probate and how to sell a house in probate in Utah. 

Tips On Probate And How To Sell A House In Probate

law icon to sell a house in probate in utah

What Is Probate?

When a homeowner dies without making a will (also known as intestate) or without bequeathing their property to someone, the house enters probate court where it is sold. When this occurs, the state becomes the administrator of the house or property sale. 

In this situation, the court’s focus is to make sure that the property is promoted fairly and sold at the best possible price it can get. In order to make sure this happens, the court will require that specific steps, processes, and procedures are put in place and followed throughout the sale. 

In the state of Utah, properties in this situation are required to go through a mandatory probate sale process. 

What Makes A House in Probate Attractive To Buyers?

The biggest reason that a buyer may be interested in a house sold in probate is the price. Typically, a house in probate will sell for a much lower price point than similar homes in the area. Often, buyers are searching for probate listings in order to find a good deal, especially since many of these homes will be sold as-is or in imperfect conditions. That’s something to consider as the family of the seller as you’ll want to consider if this is the best foot forward.

How Is A Probate Sale Marketed?

When a house is sold in probate, the marketing of it doesn’t change too much from the way a regular home sale on the open market might be marketed. A probate attorney or estate rep will hire a local real estate agent and sign a listing agreement with them. They will, in turn, show the property to potential buyers and coordinate negotiations when it comes time to make the sale. 

The listing price for the house is usually based on the suggestions of the real estate agent or an independent appraisal that has been ordered by the probate court. Once a buyer puts in an offer, the representative will petition the court for a license to sell them the house. The heirs of the deceased owner will be notified of the intentions and, presuming no objections, the sale will move forward and include a court date to finalize everything. 

At the court appointment, any interested buyers must attend and submit bids. If only one buyer shows up and makes a bid, they automatically get the sale. The highest bid wins and they must provide at least 10% of the offer price right away in the form of a cashier’s check. 

What Are Buyer Concerns About A Probate Sale?

One thing that buyers often have to consider is that the 10% deposit often isn’t refundable unless the original buyer isn’t the one the court confirms as the official buyer. In that case, that buyer gets their money back. Otherwise, it’s important to know that a buyer can still back out, but they won’t get that earnest money back. 

Why might a buyer back out? The most obvious reason is that, because the owner is deceased, there is no one there to make disclosures about unseen issues with the house and therefore no one to make those repairs when discovered. If the buyer finds out after the fact that there are problems with the pipes, negative changes in the surrounding neighborhood, or if there is anything else that might not have been known at the time of the sale, they do not have any recourse. 

someone selling their house in probate to a real estate investor in utah

Sell Your House in Probate To A Real Estate Investor

If you’ve inherited a Utah house in probate, that can be a major process that causes headaches and concerns you’re not interested in dealing with. Just being stuck with a house you had no intention of managing, especially if it’s not located where you live, can make for a stressful and overwhelming situation. That can be compounded if the real estate agent hired by the court isn’t able to sell the house fast enough due to disrepair or damage concerns. 

Real estate investors like Axess Home Buyers can help solve this issue by working with you to create the best outcome for you. We can make sure you don’t have to worry about the house any longer and deal with it as soon as you receive probate, potentially even prior to it happening. The basic reason we’ll do this is that we’re interested in turning the property around and selling it for a profit. But that doesn’t mean we’re not interested in getting you a fair deal. Also, instead of waiting months for a deal to finalize, we can get it done in a matter of days without any hassles.

You might be wondering how we can buy a house when it goes into probate. Technically, you do need to wait for probate before selling a house you’ve inherited. However, as cash home buyers and investors, we can get a head start by taking an early look at the property before you receive probate. And you can even reach out to us before you receive probate or meet with the court. 

The benefit of working with a cash buyer is that we don’t need lenders or mortgages to clear before buying the property. We don’t have to worry about third parties and we can buy the house much quicker than traditional home buyers on the open market. A sale to us can be over in a matter of days compared to a sale on the open market that will take, on average, a few months or even longer. 

The process starts when you reach out to us and let us know your situation. While we are not lawyers, we can put you in touch with experts we’ve worked with and help guide you down the path to probate. And once there, we can work with you to make sure we can make a fair offer that succeeds, works for you, and gets you moving forward as fast as possible. 

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