Selling real estate can be confusing and stressful for anyone. For the elderly, it can be overwhelming.

When parents or other elderly relatives can no longer safely live alone or maintain a home, you may find yourself tasked with assisting them in the disposition of their property. More than simply selling the real estate, you’ll be faced with helping them downsize and move.

Addressing the Emotional Challenges of Family Ties

Elderly homeowners may resent having to sell their house and life’s possessions. This can cause conflict for the family members who assist them, especially if the relationship is already somewhat strained.

If your parents or loved ones are particularly mercurial or authoritarian, it is human nature for you to maintain a “hands-off” attitude and defer to their wishes. If they have lost some degree of mental capacity, however, it may be necessary to put the old ways aside to ensure their best interests.

The Financial Challenges of Selling Real Estate for the Elderly

According to the American Bar Association, the elderly face an increased risk of becoming victims of real estate fraud. The complex legal documents are often too confusing or difficult to read. Absent malicious intent, it’s possible that simple errors could cost them money.

When family members depend on the proceeds from the property’s sale to pay for their future care, it’s even more important to protect their interests.

Whether you plan to advise your loved one or engage the services of an attorney or financial advisor, everyone’s interests will best be protected through the use of a neutral third party with fiduciary accountability.

Senior Sellers May Harbor Unrealistic Expectations

Especially if the property has been the family home for years or decades, your loved one may get emotional at the prospect of selling the home and its contents.

Older sellers can form erroneous opinions of their property’s value from talking with neighbors or reading news articles. As a result, they may demand that the property be listed for an amount that is either too high or too low.

If the listing price is too high, the property may languish on the market and subsequently become stigmatized. If it’s too low, your family member will lose valuable proceeds.

When selling real estate, one of the most effective ways to protect your interests and those of your loved ones is to engage the representation of a licensed Realtor®. An experienced agent can advise you on market conditions and value. But even more important, Realtors® are held to exacting legal standards of fiduciary duty to their clients.

The Edie Israel Team, providing professional real estate services in Yorba Linda and the surrounding communities, has the experience and track record you want on your side. Our team of seasoned professionals will ensure that every aspect of the real estate transaction is handled with the utmost professionalism and care.

Contact us today if you or a loved one is preparing for the challenge of selling real estate in Southern California.