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Inherited Family Properties

Inherited Family Properties Are Sold In Just Three Months On Average, Regardless Of The Deceased’s Wishes

New research has revealed that the average inherited property is sold by family members within three months of the death, regardless of the deceased homeowner’s wishes. Although two in three Britons believed that their deceased relative would have liked their property to remain in the family, just 15% actually kept it.

The wishes of the deceased are often overlooked when it comes to settling their estate, according to new research which has found that just 15% of Britons keep inherited properties, in spite of 66% believing that it would have been their loved one’s intention to keep it in the family. Furthermore, the average inherited property is sold within just three months of the homeowner passing.

The team at undertook the research as part of an ongoing study. 2,912 Britons took part in the poll, all of whom had inherited property from a loved one.

Initially, all respondents were asked, “When your loved one passed away, did they intend for the family/beneficiaries to sell or keep their property?” to which 66% stated that their loved one would have liked the property to remain in the family. When all respondents were then asked, however, whether they kept or sold the property, just 15% stated that they did.

All respondents who sold the property they inherited were asked how long it took after the deceased person passed away to accept an offer on the property, to which the average time period was just three months. When asked to share their reasons for selling, the majority stated that it was ‘easier to divide the assets’ if the property was sold (81%), while 45% said there was ‘no need to keep the property’ and 39% ‘could not afford to keep the property’. Just 12% stated that they sold the property for sentimental reasons, as it ‘held too many memories’ to keep.

All those who sold the properties were then asked if they achieved asking price, to which just one in five (20%) stated that they did. 9% accepted over the asking price, and the remaining majority 71% accepted under the asking price in order to secure sale on the deceased love one’s property.

Of those who kept the property, more than half undertook ‘renovation and/or refurbishment’ measures, with an average spend of £3,500. More than half chose to reside in the inherited property (57%) while the remaining 43% of respondents went on to let it out.

Lisa Evans from commented:

“Settling a loved one’s estate is an incredibly hard thing to orchestrate and often has to be carried out in a heightened state of emotion. There are a lot of difficult decisions to be made after a person dies; letting go of a person’s belongings and assets can often feel like letting go of them too. The most important thing is keeping the peace as much as possible and doing things as simply and painlessly as you can, however you decide to manage the assets. Things like property can be particularly hard to part with, a family home holds so many memories, but it’s not always practical or fair to keep hold of these big assets.”

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