How To Reduce Your Stress When Selling an Estate
When you loose a close family member there are lots of legal and financial details that require your immediate attention. Sadly, Some cannot wait for you to finish grieving. There are a variety of books and articles to help you focus on the most important tasks. That said, your first step should be to speak with an estate attorney. This is especially true if there is real estate involved. The executor or administrator will be assigned via the courts. The executor is named in the will, the administrator is not. If it's determined that the real estate needs to be sold there are a few steps you can take to reduce the stress for you and your family.
CONTACT A TRUSTED REAL ESTATE AGENT
Your agent will advise you on the list price but also the best way to present the home under the circumstances. Questions like should the home be cleaned out first, should the home be sold 'as-is', should repairs be done, should the home be staged and more will be discussed. This is the time to get your selling questions answered and make your wishes known.
INVOLVE THE BENEFICIARIES UP FRONT
If there is more than one beneficiary they should be involved early on. The executor is responsible for signing the listing agreement and disclosures and providing direction, however siblings or other beneficiaries may want to be involved and understandably so. A good agent will respect these relationships and involve the other family members. One way is to have the first meeting with all interested parties. The meeting could be in person or conference call to answer any questions. It's important that the family be on board early to keep the process moving along.
THE ONE THAT DOESN'T WANT TO SELL
Many times there is the one family member that doesn't want to sell. I've been asked, can they stop the sale? Probably not, but that doesn't mean they won't try. The easiest thing for that family member to do is buy the house at a price the executor agrees to (it can be less than market value as long as both parties agree). Both parties should have a real estate attorney to complete the sale. More often however, the disgruntled family member is not in a position to purchase the home and that reality may be hard for them to swallow. Your attorney and agent can help with the explanation and hopefully bring that family member around.
LEAVE THE SELLING TO THE PROS
This is the time to sit back and let someone else handle the details. A good agent will be sensitive to your needs and yet remain professional in the presentation of your home. Your real estate agent knows how to market the home to the widest audience to attract the right buyer. As with any sale, the home should be made available for open houses and to as many showings as possible. Your agent will give you regular updates and of course present any offers and work with you to negotiate the best deal possible.
If you need to sell an estate contact me today to discuss your options.