The Probate Process in Franklin, TN – Selling An Inherited House

by | May 9, 2022 | Blog

A common question posed by an heir of a deceased family member is whether or not a house that is part of the decedent’s estate can be sold before the probate process is completed. While that sounds like a simple “Yes or No” question, it can actually be a complicated process and must be followed carefully to avoid fines and penalties, and added delays.

What Is Probate?

Probate in Tennessee, according to NOLO, is a court-supervised legal process that may be required after someone dies. Probate gives someone–usually the surviving spouse or another close family member–legal authority to gather the deceased person’s assets, pay debts and taxes, and eventually transfer assets to the people who inherit them

Completing the probate process in Tennessee commonly takes six months to a year, but can take considerably longer if someone contests the Will, or if the decedent dies without a Will in place.

Williamson County, TN Probate Process

In Franklin, Willamson County, TN, all probate matters are addressed through the Chancery Court. The Clerk and Master for the Chancery Court also helps, under the Court’s supervision, with routine matters within the process, since there are only two Chancellors/Judges currently overseeing probate matters. Once the proper steps have been taken to open the probate for an estate, then the matter can be discussed of selling a house that is part of the estate.

Selling A House During Probate

There is a very specific process required for selling a house before the probate of the estate has been completed. But, it can be done, especially if the proceeds of the sale are necessary for taking care of estate expenses. In order to start the process of selling the house, the Executor or Administrator of the estate must file the proper paperwork with the Court in order for the sale to be considered, much less approved. Approval to proceed with the sale of the house can take up to 60 days, and sometimes longer.

During this process, while waiting for approval to sell the house, the executor is responsible for continuing to pay all associated costs for the property, including mortgage payments, property tax, homeowner’s insurance, utilities, and any necessary major repairs that could negatively affect the value of the home – a burst pipe or non-functioning heating unit, etc.

Traditional Sale vs. Cash-Sale

Whether the property is sold through an agent on the traditional real estate market, or by a cash buyer like American Made Home Solutions, it is not an immediate event. However, with a traditional market sale, the process can drag on for an extended period. The difference is that a cash home buyer does not have to jump through the hoops of bank or other financial institution lending to cover the cost of the purchase. This means that you won’t have to hold your breath hoping the offer doesn’t fall through. The court will assign professionals to appraise the property. Once there is an offer on the property, the pending sale is publicized and the Court will oversee an auction if there is more than one interested buyer.

Even though this seems like an inconveniently lengthy process, the sale can be approved prior to the conclusion of probate. However, If the house is being sold to pay debs of the estate, those will be taken care of first prior to any money being dispersed to heirs.

Exceptions

There are exceptions written into Tennessee Probate Law, much the same as in other states in the U.S. For example, if there is a surviving spouse who is a joint owner of the property, that person can sell the property once the Court has recognized their claim. This is a much quicker process.

CONCLUSION

The probate process, in general, can be confusing and overwhelming. The fact that laws pertaining to that process often vary from state to state can make it even more confusing. Regardless of those differences, one of the most pressing matters in dealing with the estate of a deceased loved one is frequently how soon the house can be sold or transferred.

Tennessee allows some exceptions for that particular issue. The title to real property that meets the terms of these exceptions can be transferred without having to go through the probate process. However, you may still have to wait to actually sell the property until all of the debts of the estate have been determined and paid. So consulting with an expert, like those at American Made Home Solutions, is a wise step to take in the process.

Contact us today to schedule a consultation.

WE BUY HOUSES FAST FOR CASH

Enter your information below to received your fast cash offer!

  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Recent Blog Post

The Diary of a Remote RV Investor-episode 43

The Diary of a Remote RV Investor-episode 43

As we grow up, we often get so busy that we don’t take much time to stop and look around or stare into the sky and look at the clouds or go star gazing.  By the time night rolls around we are exhausted after another busy day, that we barely make it inside to sit...

Less Common Causes for Foreclosure

Less Common Causes for Foreclosure

The term “foreclosure” immediately brings to mind consistently missed mortgage payments, leading to a homeowner losing ownership of their home. However, there are also other reasons a lender may initiate foreclosure proceedings. It is important that a homeowner...

The diary of a remote RV investor episode 42

The diary of a remote RV investor episode 42

So, it was definitely different being away from home our first Christmas and Thanksgiving.  Instead of our normal gathering of friends and families, we were able to seek out new friends and new things to do.  This first season away we found ourselves in Jonesboro, AR,...

The Diary of an RV investor-episode 41

The Diary of an RV investor-episode 41

As we travel throughout the country many folks ask us questions, and one of the most common is where do you stay?  You folks envision what they know, so if they are used to camping in the woods, they think of state parks and such.  If they are used to going...