Purchasing real property through a conservatorship transaction, whether it’s a residence or an investment property, is very similar to buying real property under probate. In fact, such properties are typically marketed with probate properties and the word conservatorship may only appear in the fine print. Here are a few tips for the buyer:
- Inspect the property, inside and out, beforeyou make an offer. You can hire inspectors, at your own expense, to assure the property meets your expectations.
- Preview, review and approve the preliminary title report prior to making an offer.
- Review and approve any Homeowners Association (HOA) documents or Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions (CC&Rs) pertaining to the property and the neighborhood or community.
- Get prequalified for a loan AND get the property prequalified. In other words, make sure that your lender is ready to loan money 1) to you and 2) on this specific property. The lender will need to have the property appraised.
- Work with a real estate professional who knows the ins and outs of probate/conservatorship and is experienced in court-approved transactions.
Remember that properties sold through conservatorship are always sold as-is and offers are made without contingencies. As a buyer, the more informed and prepared you are — the more you’ve done your home-work — the more likely you are to enjoy a transaction without confusion or delays.