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Selling inherited property in California

On Behalf of | Sep 16, 2022 | Commercial Real Estate, Real Estate Law

It’s not uncommon for California parents to leave the family home to their adult child. It’s not always necessary though, and these adult children might end up selling it – a process that can be difficult to navigate so soon after their parent’s death.

Probate process and property

Probate can take a long time to figure out and property can’t be put up for sale until after it is finished. If there’s no estate plan, then the probate process will take longer with the property eventually being passed to next of kin.

While it’s easy if there is only one child, it’s not uncommon for a property to be split between siblings after a parent’s death. The expectation is the children will work together to figure out how to use the property or they’ll sell it and split the costs.

Selling a property with multiple owners

It’s infinitely more difficult to sell a property if the profits are being split among multiple people. Communicating thoroughly with your siblings throughout this process is essential.

Usually, the executor will handle the sale of the property, as long as all of the beneficiaries agree to sell. If the beneficiaries don’t agree to sell, the conflict might be taken to court in order to find a resolution.

Actually selling the property

If the executor is permitted to sell, they’ll handle the sale of the property and give the beneficiaries their shares of the profit. If they don’t have permission, usually one sibling will be in charge of the process.

It would be up to the beneficiaries to handle things like inheritance tax and short or long-term capital gains. It might be difficult to handle selling the property or managing it in the interim, but the process goes much smoother with frequent communication and a solid estate plan.