Probate is a legal term derived from the Latin word ‘probatum’ meaning something proved. Nowadays we use it in the sense of winding up a deceased estate. And incidentally clearing a hoarded house as may be needed too.
The probate process includes identifying the assets belonging to the deceased, and attaching a fair value to them. And then distributing them to their new owners after complying with estate and tax law.
Avery & Associates assists with valuing deceased assets, and clearing homes of items of great or little value. We comply fully with Section 160 of the Inheritance Tax Act 1984. We are legally able to submit valuations to the Inland Revenue for inheritance tax calculations. And we are valuers of great experience.
Probate Assistance When Winding Up an Estate
Her Majesty’s Government has gone to great pains to make the probate system accessible to lay people. Government websites have loads of valuable advice. Just make sure you spot the valuables, value the assets correctly and don’t fall foul of taxation law.
Valuing the Deceased’s Property
There’s a fair chance of a property exceeding the threshold for inheritance tax. It’s therefore important to avoid under-valuing it, and inadvertently under-declaring inheritance tax obligations.
Using an estate agent could get you into difficulties if you are acting as executor, and their value is too low. We recommend using a chartered surveyor instead. Speak to Avery & Associates for advice on this important matter.
HM Revenue and Customs have a right to revalue property valuations at their discretion. They also have power to apply financial sanctions, if they decide an executor negligently overlooked a pertinent matter.
If a decease person owned property as joint tenant, then we prorate their share of the value according to the number of co-owners. Much the same applies to undeveloped land.
Valuing Contents, and Clearing a Hoarded House if Required
You may like to think twice before undertaking a house clearance, because not everybody maintains their home to your standards. You may also feel somewhat strange upon entering what was once the private domain of someone you knew, and possibly loved.
Nonetheless, somebody must go through their things to trace items of value, before sticky fingers rifle through them and precious possessions start to vanish. Your task may be even complicated, if you are clearing a hoarders house for the first time.
Avery & Associates have attended to many house clearances in our several decades of business in South England and Wales. We know from experience that approximately one-in-twenty deceased homes we clear will have had a compulsive hoarder as their final resident.
A shocked relative often contacts us for assistance after they find an OCD house clearance is involved. They may feel deeply embarrassed when they swing the door open to reveal the clutter. That’s when we have to take time out and explain that hoarding is a mental state, and not a sign of slothfulness.
OCD House Clutter Versus Disorganized Collections
Obsessive compulsive disorder, or OCD for short is a personal lifestyle involving valueless clutter for no apparent reason. This may begin as innocently as keeping used plastic shopping bags ‘just in case’, to filling a room to the ceiling with used wrapping paper, free community newspapers, and the like.
Psychologists have numerous theories when and why this happens, as well as ways of predicting how the condition develops. However, if you know a person who lives at home alone and never entertains, then there’s an above average chance they are accumulating clutter.
Collectors, on the other hand gather items of value around a common theme, like porcelain figurines, antique tinplate toys, and art works. They arrange these as a set, and welcome anybody who appreciates what they have, and wants to view it.
Calculating the Value of House Contents in an Estate
It can be difficult to know where to begin whether combing through an impeccably even obsessively tidy home, or worse when attempting a compulsive hoarder house clearance. That’s because you are searching for two things simultaneously:
1… Clues to the assets of the estate, including property ownership, savings, investments, personal loans, debts of various kinds and the all-important last will and testament
2… Items of value that now belong to an heir, or in any case need assessment to determine the value of the estate for purposes of estate duty taxes
This is not an easy task, especially if you are clearing a hoarded house without assistance. Avery and Associates value deceased assets, and clear homes of items of little or great value after processing.
We comply fully with Section 160 of the Inheritance Tax Act 1984, and we are legally able to submit valuations to Inland Revenue for inheritance tax calculations. We are also highly experienced valuers, and our caring personal attention is legendary.