Expert Tips for Selling an Inherited House Successfully

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According to one analysis, by age 74, almost 2 in 5 individuals will receive an inheritance at least once. The majority receive inheritances from parents, which can include homes and other real estate assets. Inheriting a house can carry emotions, from sorrow to gratitude, along with the significant responsibilities of ownership. You may have a range of questions, like what is the best thing to do with an inherited house? Is it better to keep an inherited house or sell it? Before you decide, you should assess the value and condition of the inherited home to make the right decision.

If you’ve decided that selling the inherited property is the best move, this guide will navigate you through the logistical maze that comes with it. We understand the sensitive nature of this transition and are here to provide you with actionable, up-to-date information to make this process as smooth as possible.

Understanding the Value of Your Inherited Property

Determining the value of an inherited property is the cornerstone of the selling process. It’s essential to know the current real estate market trends and insights, as these will significantly impact your property’s value. Consulting with a knowledgeable IDEAL AGENT® professional can help you gain an accurate assessment tailored to the nuances of the inherited home’s worth.

Emotional Ties & Professional Guidance

Dealing with an inherited home can be emotionally taxing, especially if it is a beloved family home. It’s normal for the house to carry sentimental value, so partnering with an experienced real estate agent is crucial. They can provide the needed support and expertise to sell your home respectfully and for its maximum value.

Determining the Home Value & Market Price

Setting the right price is critical when selling an inherited property. Your IDEAL AGENT® will provide a comparative market analysis to help you understand the market and set a competitive listing price. With the right pricing strategy, you can quickly attract serious buyers and sell the property.

two people go over a real estate contract on a wooden desk

Legal Steps in Selling Inherited Property

Selling an inherited house involves several legalities that can seem daunting. We’ll go over the steps so you can fulfill all requirements and protect your interests throughout the sale.

Note: Please contact a real estate lawyer for opinions and advice about this process – your agent can help you find a lawyer, but we cannot offer legal advice.

Preparing the Inherited Home for Sale

Your inherited home may need some upgrades to appeal to the right market. Essential repairs and innovative staging strategies can transform a property and entice potential buyers. Here are a few practical tips to elevate your property’s appeal and readiness for the market:

Home Improvements & Staging

Older inherited homes often require updates to fetch the best price in the current market. Strategic improvements, such as fresh paint in neutral tones and professional landscaping, can seriously enhance curb appeal. Decluttering and thorough cleaning are cost-effective ways to make the property more appealing. Your IDEAL AGENT® will help identify the most beneficial upgrades and connect you with trusted professionals to complete these tasks efficiently.

Financial Aspect: Taxes and Profit Maximization

You’ll need to understand the tax implications and learn how to maximize the profit from your sale. Partnering with an expert on the latest tax information relevant to selling an inherited property will make this much easier, and your agent will offer strategic advice to ensure you keep more of the sale proceeds in your pocket.

Tax Implications & Financial Advice

The financial aspect of selling an inherited property can be complex. It’s important to understand the capital gains taxes that may apply to your sale and the step-up in basis, which could minimize your tax liability.

When you sell an inherited property, capital gains taxes are the fees you owe to the federal government based on the profit from that sale. Moreover, the step-up tax basis represents a tax benefit that reevaluates an asset’s worth at the time of inheritance, reflecting any increase in value. This adjustment increases the taxable value of the asset to its market value at the time it is passed on to the heir, thereby reducing the potential capital gains taxes due when the asset is sold.

These situations are when you need the advice of a licensed attorney, financial advisor, or tax professional. IDEAL AGENT® can introduce you to reputable experts to ensure you make informed financial decisions.

Selling vs. Renting: Making an Informed Decision

When you inherit a property, you have a choice: sell or rent it out. Understanding the advantages and challenges of each option helps you make a choice that serves your best interests.

Pros of Selling:

• Immediate Liquidity
• Simplicity
• Tax Advantages
• Closure

Cons of Selling:

• Market Dependency
• One-Time Benefit
• Emotional Impact

Pros of Renting:

• Steady Income Stream
• Property Appreciation
• Flexibility
• Preservation of Family Home

Cons of Renting:

• Management Responsibilities
• Variable Income
• Tax Implications
• Emotional Distance

Choosing between selling or renting your inherited property requires careful consideration of these factors in light of your circumstances and financial goals.

a person sits at a laptop looking at home listings


Marketing Your Inherited Property

When it’s time to sell your inherited home, effective marketing is critical to attracting potential buyers and getting the best price. Here are several strategies that either you or your IDEAL AGENT® can do to help showcase your property’s best features:
1. Professional Photography: High-quality images are crucial. They are often the first impression a potential buyer will have of your property.
2. Virtual Tours: Offer 360-degree virtual tours to allow prospects to walk through the home digitally, which can be especially appealing to out-of-town buyers.
3. Real Estate Websites: List your home on popular real estate websites where buyers actively search for properties.
4. Open Houses: Hosting an open house can bring in a flurry of potential buyers and create a sense of urgency.
5. Local Newspapers and Magazines: While digital marketing is vital, traditional channels like local print media can still be very effective, especially in specific markets.
6. Networking with Local Agents: IDEAL AGENT® can network with other agents who may have clients looking for a home like yours.


a larger suburban home with a sold sign in the front lawn

Closing the Deal: Negotiation and Finalization

Here are essential tips to ensure a smooth transition to sale completion:

Negotiation Tips:

Understand the Market: Know the current market trends to ensure your counteroffers are reasonable and in line with what buyers are willing to pay.
Stay Unemotional: Keep a level head and make decisions based on logic rather than sentiment.
Prepare to Compromise: Be ready to meet in the middle. Flexibility can be the key to a successful negotiation.

Closing the Process:

• Review the Contract: Ensure all agreed-upon terms are clearly stated in the contract.
• Understand Closing Costs: Be aware of the costs you are responsible for as a seller.
• Clear Title: Confirm no liens or disputes on the property’s title.
• Final Walkthrough: The buyer typically does this to verify the property is in the agreed-upon condition.

IDEAL AGENT® is here to provide personalized assistance, ensuring that your sale’s emotional and financial aspects are handled with the utmost care and expertise. Contact us today to sell an inherited home successfully.


Are you considering selling your inherited property? Get started selling your home with IDEAL AGENT®. Selling an inherited house is a unique journey that requires sensitivity and expertise. IDEAL AGENT® is dedicated to providing a service that honors your emotional journey while ensuring the financial and logistical aspects of the sale exceed your expectations. If you’re ready to take the next step in selling your inherited property, contact IDEAL AGENT® for personalized assistance. We are here to guide you through each stage of the process.

To learn more, read up on the difference between selling with an agent vs. on your own and how to get your home ready to sell

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