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What is a probate list?

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In real estate, a probate list is a group of properties for sale that are in probate. Probate is the period directly following a person’s death when the law requires certain actions to close the estate, according to the American Bar Association. If someone dies without a will, the state government liquidates its assets to pay estate debts. The state typically puts any real property up for sale for reasonable price.

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Companies compile and sell probate lists that include properties nationwide. They sell these lists to speculators. Antique dealers, collectors and real estate agents are also potential list buyers, says U.S. Probate Leads.

Because a state government entity is motivated to sell its probate properties quickly, investors often discover enticing deals on probate lists. Antique dealers use the lists to locate and purchase individual items that are still on the property. Collectors looking for vintage cars or household items often use probate lists to ferret out treasures. Real estate agents value probate lists for getting a jump on their competitors in finding viable properties to sell, especially in highly desirable neighborhoods where homes sell quickly, as explained by U.S. Probate Leads.

Strict rules govern the sale of probate real estate, so agents and investors must be prepared to fulfill all the legal requirements of such transactions. However, those who regularly make these types of investments believe that they have the potential for turning a substantial profit upon resale, writes Dennis Henson of REI Club.

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