Selling a house when the owner has passed on is more complex than selling it when the owner is alive. Coupled with the emotional aspect of getting a loved one’s home ready for sale and the financial implications you need to consider, it can seem a daunting task. However, if you take the following things into consideration, you can still sell an inherited house without experiencing many problems.

1.  Verify your ownership

Before you can sell the house, the title deed should be transferred onto your name. This is usually done through the probate court.

2.  Consider how much tax you have to pay

Connect with a tax advisor who can help you decide what to do regarding taxes. Common taxes associated with inheriting a home are:

  • Inheritance tax
  • State / local taxes
  • Capital gains tax
  • Inherited property is taxed on the value of the property on the day the owner died.

Make sure that you pay any outstanding property taxes and then keep them current until you sell the house.

3.  Insurance and remaining mortgage

You will need to insure the property since there is a new homeowner.

If there is a remaining mortgage on the house, make sure that there is enough equity in the inherited house to sell it and still make a profit. If the house is worth less than what is owed on it, you can choose not to accept the house and allow it to go into foreclosure.

4.  Selling the house

The two most common ways to sell the house is either through a Broker or sell it directly to a Real Estate Investment Company.  The difference is a Broker will find you a buyer who will most likely move into the house or you can sell it straight to a Real Estate Investment Company who will fix up the house then sell it.

Most of the time the houses you inherit will be dated and in need of updates in order to sell it to someone who is planning on living in the house.  If you are in the situation where you can put some time and money into the house, this is where you will sell it for the highest price.  However, along with doing improvements, you will be taking some risk in addition to needing  money to invest and then be able to wait to get your money back.  You will also have to pay the Broker a commission.  This process could take 6 months or more depending on the time of year and the updates required

If the house needs a lot of improvements, it’s sometimes best to market it to an investor. Investors buy houses at a discount, but they buy them as-is. For a cash offer and quick closure, contact SnH Homes LLC. Selling to an investor can also avoid the painful process of cleaning the house and disposing of personal keepsakes of a loved one.  You will not get as much money for the house selling it to an investor, but most often investors can close very quickly – often times in less than 2 weeks and you will not have to pay a commission.

5.  Keep the house safe while vacant

It can take some time between inheriting the house and selling it. Vacant houses can deteriorate very quickly. They are also more vulnerable to crime and break-ins as well. Consider investing in a camera security system and/or an alarm. You could also rent the property while waiting to sell it.


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