So, you’ve inherited a house.
Hopefully the house was more of a welcomed gift than an unpleasant surprise, but either way, it’s safe to say that inheriting a house is a bit different than getting a set of China or a cashiers check.
The good news is, half of the battle is just trying to figure out what you’re going to do with your new property. Once you’ve got an idea of how you plan to use the house, you’ll be able to get all your ducks in order.
Keep reading for some helpful tips and suggestions on what you should do with the newly inherited property.
Do An Inspection
First things first, always do a home inspection.
Whether you were close with the person who left you the property or not, doing an inspection yourself can be difficult. If you had a healthy relationship with that person it can be especially frustrating when it comes to walking through the house. In all other cases, doing an inspection can be difficult because it requires knowledge of several areas including plumbing, electrical, structural, and more.
It’s never a bad idea to hire a professional to perform a home inspection. Hiring a professional will ensure that there is no bias during the inspection and it will give you the peace of mind knowing that your new home was looked at by someone experienced in all of the fields listed above.
Have an Estate Sale
Next, you will probably need to have an estate sale. An estate sale is basically a big yard sale intended for when a person passes away. You will likely open up the doors to the house so that people can walk around and purchase things.
Be sure to go through the items beforehand with your close friends and family. You wouldn’t want to be in a situation where you’re having an estate sale and someone wants to buy a teddy bear that you used to play with when you were a kid. Aside from the awkwardness, a situation like this can be traumatic during the grieving process.
It’s also a good idea to have a couple of family members or friends help you during your estate sale. Have at least one person posted at each entrance or exit. This will allow you to prevent theft and better regulate pricing.
Keep a Light or Two On
While this is more of a tip than a must, it’s always a good idea to leave a few lights on in the house until you can get everything settled.
Unfortunately, it’s a very common thing for looters to break into a newly abandon property. If people start to notice that the house is suddenly unoccupied, you may attract some dangerous people and with it a dangerous situation.
You can park your car in the driveway, occasionally turn on and off different lights, and just have someone present in the house every now and then. This will help you keep away any bad juju.
Know Your Options:
Now that you’ve got some of the basics down, it’s time to figure out what you’re going to do in the long-haul.
You’ve got a few options. You can sell the house, rent it out, or redecorate and call it home-sweet-home.
Let’s take a deeper look into these options.
If you plan to sell your newly inherited property, there are a few steps you’ll need to take.
The first thing you’ll need to do in order to sell the house is to get all of the paperwork in order. Most people would be surprised by just how much paperwork there is. So the easiest way to sell a house is to find a probate lawyer.
Probate is the process through the court system that transfers the title of the house into your name. Depending on the legal status of the house and if there are any creditors interested in the property, the probate process can take anywhere from a couple of weeks to several months.
Once you get the paperwork started you can take time to clean up the house and get a professional quote on what the house is worth.
Check out this website to learn more about the selling process.
If you’re not going to sell the house and you don’t plan to move in, renting it out is always an option.
When renting out a property it’s always good to have a lawyer write up a rental agreement. If you’re not careful when screening potential tenants and writing up lease agreements, you could find yourself in a very sticky situation.
However, if you’re able to iron out all the details renting can be a good financial option.
And if you’re not ready to sell the house or are too attached to rent it out, you can always re-decorate the place and move in.
If you’re going to move in you’ll need to call the current home insurance provider and let them know that you were the new owner. Sometimes inherited properties can fall through the cracks when it comes to insurance plans.
Don’t forget to change over the electric and water bills, too.
What Will You Do With Your Inherited Property?
Does it feel comforting knowing that you have more than just one option for your inherited property?
Remember that the probate process can take a while sometimes, so you don’t have to decide right away what you’re going to do. Take your time and let yourself process your grieving emotions.
For more help during this difficult time, head over to our self-improvement section.