How to sell a probate property in Wales
Have you inherited a property in Wales? Here’s our quick guide to navigating the process of selling it.
What is a probate property?
Probate property is property that’s left behind when somebody dies, and the term ‘probate’ refers to the legal process by which dead person’s estate is administered. This includes establishing the validity of their will.
Inheriting a house can be a headache. Not only will you face the time-consuming task of emptying the property; you’ll also have to go through a series of legal steps, often with mounting probate estate bills to contend with. On top of that, an empty property can quickly drain your money, needing maintenance and – if it has been empty for more than 30 days – vacant property insurance too.
What do I need to do when I inherit a property?
First, secure the home. The last thing you want is people breaking in – and make sure you contact the deceased’s home insurance provider, because for some policies, the death of the policyholder terminates the coverage. You’ll also need to inform the insurer that the property is empty.
On top of this you should inform the local council that the person has died and their property is empty; this could be beneficial because it may mean you get a discounted tax rate on the empty home. You can also give them a correspondence address so that any outstanding bills can be forwarded on. Do the same with the deceased’s utility, phone and internet providers.
Next, check what’s in the house. Has anything valuable been left? If so, this will need to be properly valued as it will form part of the overall value of the estate. As well as items, check for documents that have value – such as wills, bonds and share certificates.
How do I sell an inherited house in Wales?
The first thing you need to do is establish whether you need to have a grant of probate (also called a grant of representation) because you’ll need this in order to be legally able to sell the property. If the deceased person was your husband or wife and the property was held in joint names, you often won’t need this – but in all cases your best course of action is to check the title deeds with the Land Registry; this will help you establish which forms of documentation you need.
If you do need a grant of probate, you’ll need to get the wheels turning quickly, because without it, you will not legally be able to sell the property. Getting a grant of probate can be time consuming and cause delays, so make this a priority.
You’ll also need to fill inheritance tax forms which value the deceased person’s estate. To establish the value of the property, you’ll need to get two or three estate agents’ valuations and work out the average value, or get a surveyor to value it.
What else should I be aware of?
Another key issue to have on your radar is capital gains tax. If the property is not sold for some time after the grant has been issued, its value may have increased, causing the executors to incur a capital gains tax liability.
How do I sell an inherited property fast in Wales?
Chances are, you’ll want to dispose of the property quickly. You can market the property while the grant of probate is being processed, but if you want a really quick sale, then selling to Property Buyers Wales is a good move. We’ll complete the sale in days, not months, and we’ll take care of all the nitty gritty details such as instructing a solicitor. If you want to sell an inherited house fast, get in touch today.