Can I Sell My House During Probate In Maui Hawaii?

Living room of a Wailuku Hawaii cottage for sale
A Wailuku home during the sales process

The Simplest way to answer this question “Can a house be sold while it is in probate in Maui Hawaii?” is “Yes – it can!”. But of course, it’s not quite that simple… That’s where we come in. 

You will need to follow Hawaii’s rules and regulations. The probate court will monitor every step and all aspects of the sale. Whoever is the executor must also monitor and approve all of the terms of the sale. It usually seems complicated and intimidating at first, but just having a general idea of the process will make it much smoother. Remember, you don’t need to understand the entire process and have all of the answers on day 1. Just take the first step, then once that’s complete move on to the second. If you’d like a wingman, we’re happy to be there to walk you through each step one at a time. 

Can A House Be Sold While In Probate In Maui Hawaii?

Appointment of Administrator/Executor

If the decedent chose a specific person as the executor it will typically be disclosed in their will or trust. If the designated person agrees to fulfill this role then they will be appointed as the executor. But if no one has been designated in the will as executor, then the court will typically appoint a relative as administrator.

Only a few states have adopted the Uniform Probate Code, and Hawaii is one of them. The goal of this code is to make uniform probate laws between states.


Then you will need to have the property appraised. You’ll must make sure you choose a licensed and reputable appraiser. The sales price will likely be required to be at least 90% of the appraised value, so it’s important that the appraisal is accurate. 

Sale of The House

Looking out of the carport of a hawaii cottage toward the main home during the sale

Now we get to address the subject question: “Can a house be sold while it is in probate in Maui Hawaii?” And you’ll start by having your agent list the house on a multiple listing service so that buyers will know it’s a probate sale. Alternatively you can contact a cash buyer, like Maui Home Buyers, if you’d prefer an easier process and a guaranteed sale. 

If the realtor finds a buyer that’s interested in the property they will make an offer for you to consider. If you decide accept it then the sale is subject to court confirmation; which basically means the court needs to approve the sale. You as the seller would submit the offer through your lawyer to the court for confirmation. If the court approves and everyone agrees, then the court may set a closing date, when the sale is to be finalized. 

If everyone involved in the probate agrees to accept the offer and the court confirms it then they will mail a Notice of Proposed Action all heirs, which explains all of the terms of the sale to everyone. All of the heirs will have 15 days to respond or object if disagree. If no one objects within those 15 days then you can proceed with the sale without being required to have another court date. 


This is the interesting part. Before confirming the sale, the judge will ask everyone in the courtroom that day if any of them would like to bid, or make an offer to buy the house or condo. If no one wants to bid, similar to an auction, then the sale can move forward as planned and outlined earlier. 

But if someone in the courtroom is willing to make a higher offer, then first buyer’s 10% deposit needs to be refunded before the new sale can start. Once the second bid is accepted, that buyer needs to put down the same deposit via cashiers check.  Once the court has confirmed and approved this new sale then the buyer and seller can sign a sales agreement. This is often a unique contract, since they often won’t have any contingencies, and escrow typically closes just after the hearing. 

I’m sure you’d agree that probate can be a complicated and overwhelming process. We recommend working with a lawyer on the specifics. 

We’re also always here to help. We’ve walked owners through probate before, and while we can’t offer legal advice (we are not lawyers), we’re always happy to use our experience in this industry to help our community – whether we make a deal to buy your house or not. We just like to help people, and we believe helping people regardless of the circumstances will also lead to the long term success of our business. 

We’re glad to answer any and all questions. Call or text us at (808) 359-3121 or fill out the online form to reach us!

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