Selling a home after a relative dies

Selling a home after a relative dies

Dealing with a family member’s death can be a double cruelty. There is the emotional loss. Then, that’s followed by the monumental task of dealing with the deceased’s estate—you might have to figure out how to sell their home and sort through any property or possessions left behind. Selling the home of someone who passed away recently is similar in many ways to selling any other home, but there are some extra considerations. Knowing how to address all the potential hurdles of the estate sale will make the process easier.

Below you’ll find information about selling a property after a parent or other relative dies.

Can the home be sold right away?

When someone passes away, the executor named in the Will is now in charge of everything including the home sale process. The executor can list the home for sale immediately as long as they have a copy of the death certificate and will, but title cannot be transferred until the Will is probated. This process takes 4-6 months but the home can be advertised for sale while the property is clearing probate as long as “subject to probate” clause is included in the sale agreement 

What does the Probate Process Look Like?

In order to apply for probate the executor needs to do the following:

  1. Obtain a copy of the current Will.
  2. Search Vital Statistics Agency to ensure it is the most recent Will.
  3. Provide notice of the application for probate to all the beneficiaries and anyone entitled to make a claim under the Wills Variation Act, which means to all beneficiaries plus spouses and children, if any are excluded from the Will.
  4. Identify all assets, value of assets and any debts.
  5. Apply to the Supreme Court of BC for probate.

Before the process can be completed the probate office will require payment of a probate fee prior to issuing the Grant of Letters Probate. Once probate is granted the executor must sell all the assets, distribute the estate and file taxes.

An important note on taxes when dealing with an estate property sale

When selling an estate one of the most important financial considerations will be dealing with taxes. For vital tax considerations and how they relate to your personal circumstances be sure to speak to an accountant. Having a massive unexpected tax bill is never fun. In fact, it is the last thing you’ll want to deal with after the death of a parent.

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About Liz Penner | Your Best Langley Real Estate Agent


Liz Penner is a top-selling licensed real estate salesperson with the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board and has been a top-selling realtor specializing in the residential resale of condos, townhomes, and houses for over a decade. Liz assists residents of the Langley and Surrey areas to sell real estate while looking out for the client’s best interests. Liz also helps first-time homebuyers, families, and repeat purchasers with their property search process, ensuring that her clients get access to the very best homes on the market while receiving excellent service ensuring that they find the perfect place to call home.


Liz holds a BBA in leadership and has completed a variety of specific training through the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board in the areas of selling strata properties, foreclosures, estate sales, and new construction properties. Liz is also well versed in POAs, the Strata Property Act, and more.


If you are looking for a knowledgeable and professional real estate agent that is willing to do everything possible to ensure that you get top dollar for the sale of your home or to find the dream home you are looking for in the Surrey and Langley, BC areas then get in contact today.


Why list your home for sale with Liz Penner


  • I’ve helped my clients sell over 400 condos, townhomes, and houses throughout the Langley and Cloverdale area, and I’d love the opportunity to do the same for you.
  • I’ve experienced straightforward sales and sales that have gone off the rails, back on the rails, off the rails, and then back on again. That’s just the way the real estate train rolls, and it never rattles me.
  • I’ve got a solid toolkit to pull from when a problem arises. I take my job seriously each time, and I will make sure you get top dollar for your  Fraser Valley, Langley, or Cloverdale home, smooth sailing, or otherwise.
  • If you’re looking for a realtor that you can count on in the Langley and Surrey area.
  • I’m your Agent!
  • If you want top dollar for your home
  • I can do that!
  • Do you want to save money on your next home purchase?
  • I can do that too!


What you can expect when working with Liz Penner


  • Fast, Reliable, and Quality service
  • Frequent Communication – from somebody who is available to serve you in the key moments that matter.
  • Expert Advice – from a well-trained and well trained and experienced agent with almost 2 decades of experience as a top-selling real estate agent.


Caldwell Banker Marquise Realty
3088 Croydon Drive
Surrey BC V3Z 0T1

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