As executor, what’s the best way to sell the family home?

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As executor, what’s the best way to sell the family home?

I am executor of our father’s estate – his home, approximately 4 acres, and interior items. The estate will be divided between my brother and I. He has had an estate sale for interior items and little sold because he is asking extreme prices. I need to sell these items, as well as the home which again he believe is worth more than the

market value. He had an appraisal done. I thought another appraisal should be

done and choose a listing price between the appraisals. He is now refusing to pay

1/2 the taxes and upkeep if it doesn’t sell for what he expects. We offered to buy

him out, yet he won’t give us a resonalble number. As the executor what would

your advise be to me?

Asked on February 14, 2017 under Estate Planning, Texas

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

If you are the sole executor and the probate court has already vested you with the general authority to handle the estate, you can proceed to sale the estate at values you see fit.  However, if you are concerned about family backlash from your brother, then seek a temporary order from the probate court which gives you specific direction and authority to sell everything and at what price (or price range).  It usually helps if you have a realtor come in and assist.  They can usually help calibrate the parties on what is a fair listing price.  If the amount is challenged later, then the realtor will be your witness that the sale price was reasonable.  For the contents of the house, you can reach out to a service to host the estate sale for you.  Again, the advantage is that they are presumed to know fair market values, which will give you some high cover later if anyone challenges the sale values later. 


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