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Executor responsibility for house sale.

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  • Executor responsibility for house sale.

    I have Grant of Probate and I will be putting my late sisters house for sale but I am concerned about my responsibility for the safety of any potential buyer.
    Am I responsible for checking and making safe an installed gas fire before sale? It has been out of use for many years due to her ill health.
    Am I responsible for checking and making safe a very large tree in the small back garden?
    Can I use estate funds to make these safe(?) - or is it a case of buyer beware?
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  • #2
    Re: Executor responsibility for house sale.

    Hi and welcome.

    When selling the house you will receive a number of precontract enquiries.
    One of these is likely to be asking if there is an annual gas safety check record for any gas appliances.
    When you answer "no" it is the buyers responsibility.

    Similarly the tree.... If it is that obvious then buyer beware.

    If you think it is to the estate's advantage to have the gas fire checked, and the tree removed/pruned (it might improve chances of a quick sale), then the estate pays.
    If you intend to do that it might be worth discussing it first with the beneficiaries as it could head off possible unpleasantness.
    As executor it is your decision.

    PS do keep house insurance in force until sale completed


    • #3
      Re: Executor responsibility for house sale.

      Thanks Des8.
      I will certainly have the fire checked for my own peace of mind and an engineers visit has been arranged. Glad I can pay from the estate.
      The estate is quite large,there is no husband or children and there is plenty of money available for a very limited number of named beneficiaries. I am not one other than chattels. My sister specified an exact sum for each beneficiary and has left the vast majority of the estate to any registered charities at the total discretion of the executors although she has named two in a Letter of Wishes which Probate Office does not consider part of the will and has not published.
      The house insurance has been updated to show the house empty and myself as the executor policy holder.
      Thanks for the most helpful advice. Her husband died a few months earlier before his estate was settled so I have some work to do with his executors but I think we are there as they have published his estate accounts.
      I have an executors bank account so all will be recorded and above board.
      Thanks again


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