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Selling Real Estate During Probate

As a probate lawyer in Folsom, I often deal with clients who are looking to sell real property that was owned by the deceased. Selling real estate during the probate process is actually a common occurrence when a deceased person’s assets, including real property, need to be distributed to heirs or beneficiaries. The process can vary depending on the specifics of the deceased person’s estate plan. Here are the general steps involved in selling real estate during probate:

  1. Initiate the Probate Process: The first step is to initiate the probate process, which typically involves filing a petition with the appropriate court to open the estate. The court will appoint an executor or personal representative to manage the estate, including the sale of real estate.
  2. Determine Property Value: An appraisal or professional valuation of the real estate should be conducted to determine its fair market value. This valuation is essential for the sale process and for tax purposes.
  3. List the Property for Sale: The executor or personal representative, with the court’s approval, will list the real estate for sale. They may work with a real estate agent to handle the sale or, in some cases, choose to sell it independently.
  4. Obtain Court Approval: In many cases, the sale of real estate during probate requires court approval. The executor must submit a petition to the court, along with information about the sale, including the sale price, terms, and the method of sale. The court will review and approve the sale if it meets legal requirements.
  5. Notice to Heirs and Beneficiaries: Notice of the sale can be provided to all heirs and beneficiaries of the estate. They may have the opportunity to object to the sale if they believe it is not in their best interest.
  6. Marketing and Sale: Once court approval is obtained, the real estate is marketed, and a sale is executed. The proceeds from the sale go into the estate and will be used to pay off any outstanding debts, expenses, and taxes before distribution to beneficiaries.
  7. Closing the Sale: The sale of the real estate goes through a typical closing process, including transferring title to the buyer. This process involves various legal and financial documents, including a deed.
  8. Distribution of Proceeds: After the sale is complete and all expenses have been paid, the net proceeds from the sale are distributed to the rightful recipients of such proceeds, such as creditors or the heirs or beneficiaries.
  9. Accounting to the Court: The executor or personal representative is usually required to provide an accounting to the court, detailing the sale of the real estate and how the proceeds were distributed.
  10. Closing the Probate: Once all assets, including the real estate, have been sold and the estate’s debts and expenses have been settled, the executor or personal representative will request the court’s approval to close the probate.


It’s important to note that the probate process and requirements can vary by jurisdiction, and the laws may change over time. Therefore, it’s essential to work with an experienced probate attorney in Folsom who can guide you through the process, ensure compliance with local laws, and help you navigate any legal or financial complexities that may arise during the sale of real estate in probate. If you have any questions about selling real estate during probate, contact Thapar Law at 916-579-0605 or send us a message

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