What the Heck is Probate Real Estate?

Through the magic of technology we’re actually away on a little two year anniversary trip to Whistler… Dave surprised me with a get away to celebrate … but thanks to this guest post from Ron Mead you will barely miss us!

If Ron’s name sounds familiar it’s probably because he was my biggest competition in the Battle of the REI Blogs. He kept us fighting right up until the end.  Ron’s an expert on probate real estate… something I knew absolutely nothing about before the battle. He was kind enough to share a little overview with us, and with you! If you have questions please comment below and I will ask Ron to stop by and answer them for you!! Enjoy ….

What the Heck is Probate Real Estate?

by Ron Mead

For many folks, the first time they hear the words Probate Real Estate, they head for the hills.  Pictures begin floating through their heads of Perry Mason like attorneys, court rooms with judges pounding their gavels, complex legal documents by the bushel full, deals that take forever to complete……Yikes!  What a nightmare!!!

Well, let me assure you none of this is true…..if it was I WOULD NOT have been working in Probate Real Estate for the last 14 years.

But, it’s really pretty simple stuff…….as a wise person once said “It’s easy if you know how!

Hi, I’m Ron Mead, The Probate Guy and I’d like to take a brief moment and explain a little about how I discovered this lucrative field and why I think it is one of your very, very best opportunities in Real Estate investing.

Back in 1995, my Father passed away and my Mother followed in 1996 so I ended up inheriting a house about 250 miles from where my wife and I live here in Oregon.  To make along story short, it took many, many two day trips, lot’s of meetings with different real estate agents, tons of phone conversations, a couple of U-Haul truck rentals, seven months and lot’s of my time before I finally got Mom and Dad’s house sold.  It was a huge time consuming event that I didn’t really need at that point in my life.

One day as I was driving down I-5 during one of my trips back and forth, I envisioned someone calling me and making me a cash offer, even if it wasn’t the full price I was asking.  I would have taken it in a heart-beat.  That didn’t happen but the idea stuck in my head.

So when we finally got the house sold, I thought to myself “I wonder if there would be a way I could contact others who have inherited houses and see if they too might be interested in a quick sale?” If I could figure out a way to contact them and send them a letter, a certain percentage of them would be interested in a quick sale at a discounted price rather than having to go through the same hassle I had.

Right then and there was born my new career in Probate Real Estate.

Well guess what? My hunch was right.  It took me three months to figure everything out but I finally got my first little deal…….a small condo that I bought and resold, making a nice profit of $9300.  Sweet!

But you might be asking “Why would sellers (heirs) be willing to sell their properties to you at a discount?”  Good question!  There’s several reasons.

One, the heirs, just like you and me, don’t need another project in their lives.  Today, we all lead very busy and demanding lives and the thought of having to go through all the hassles of cleaning up and selling Mom and Dad’s house is not very appealing.  Some of the folks you contact will be quite willing to take a discounted price for a quick sale.  Other’s won’t.

Two, the concept I call “Free Money”.  When you inherit a house, you are really the beneficiary of someone else’s work.  Consequently, you are much more willing to negotiate the price on this “gift” than you would be if this was your very own house.

distance.  Often times the heirs don’t live in the same city as the inherited house and trust me, traveling back and forth gets to be a real pain.  If the kids live in Bangor, Maine and the inherited house is in Tucson, Arizona, believe me, you will quickly have a motivated seller.

, the heirs are making monthly payments on the debt secured by the house.  If they are making these payments, the heirs will be highly motivated to sell very, very quickly.  Nobody likes having to write a mortgage check for a house they don’t live in. There also might even be some back taxes that are coming due and the heirs will need some quick cash.

So I think you can see thee are lots of reasons for the heirs to be interested in your discounted offer.  All you have to do is contact them.

Now you might be thinking, “RonBo, what about all the legal hassles you have to go through to buy the house?”

Well, this is the interesting part that very few know……… Once the court appoints what is called the Personal Representative of the estate and that person has the authority to act for the estate…..and that includes selling all the personal and real (house) property so that’s the only person you need to deal with……no attorneys, no courts, no legal paper work.

So that’s how easy it is folks, just work out the deal with the PR (which normally is a 20%-50% discount) and it’s just like buying your next door neighbor’s house.

Oh, one thing I forgot to mention. Even in times like these, the Probate market is even bigger than the foreclosure market and until someone figures our how to keep us alive forever, it always will be!

Ron Mead, The Probate Guy, bought his first investment property in 1979.  He has specialized in Probate since 1996 when he inherited his folk’s property and found what an ordeal it was to fix up and sell.  He and his wife Sharon live in Portland, Oregon where he now teaches others how they can begin their own profitable career in Probate Real Estate.  For more information, please visit www.BuyProbateProperty.com.


Filed under Guest Articles, probate

13 responses to “What the Heck is Probate Real Estate?

  1. Hey Ron!

    Great to see you as a guest poster on a friends blog. I’ve been following your probate e-book to the letter and am on my 3 mailing. Been getting some great responses to your letter but haven’t quite hooked one yet. I have full confidence that I will and soon.

    Take a look at my blog and you’ll see my progression through your course.

    Thanks Ron!

    • Ron

      Hi Scott-

      Glad to hear you are making progress. As you know mailing letters is the “engine” that keeps the system rolling. Keep up the good work!


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  3. RonBo,

    Thanks for the article.

    How similar or different are the rules regarding Probate Real Estate in Canada?

    Do you buy probate real estate in Canada?

    Do you know anyone that specializes in probate real estate in Canada?

    Enjoyed your article.

    Best Regards,

    • Ron

      Hi Neil-

      I’ve never personally tried my system in Canada as there are so many leads just here in Oregon that I couldn’t possibly get to them much less Canada.
      I have had several folks from Canada purchase
      my books but I am not sure what they have found.
      If you decided to use my system be sure to call my wife Sharon with your order 866.879.8893 as there are some “special” arrangements we need to do to cross the border……..know what I mean??
      Let me know if I can help!


  4. Hey Scott & Neil,
    Thanks for your comments!! I’ve sent Ron an email and asked him to respond… so hopefully he drops in and answers your questions in a day or so!!
    Have a great weekend,

  5. Julie,

    Can you pass along a thank you to Ron. I have been going through this with a few people, and I think his firsthand experience is just what some of these folks need to hear. Probate is confusing for a lot of people, but it always helps to have a credible source who has been through it before.

    • I think he’s checking in here … but I will email him a thank you as well!!
      I am glad that Ron’s article was useful. I know I didn’t know much about probate at all until last year when I started reading Ron’s blog.
      Thanks for stopping in!

    • Ron

      Hello Mr./Ms Home Mortgage in Kansas!

      Can I just call you HOMER?

      For most Probate IS confusing and that’s why I attempt to boil it to its essence as it really isn’t.

      FYI- Once each month I hold a tele-Seminar Q&A to answer any questions for everyone, experienced or not. Lasts about one hour.

      I always announce the details for the next call on my blog, http://BuyProbateProperty.com/blog so keep an eye out there if you are interested.

      February’s looks like it will probably be later in this month as we do them on Sat mornings and we just did Jan and I am holding my Probate Mastery Conference here in Portland the next weekend, Feb 12-14 so the 20th looks like a good date.

      We welcome all and start with the very basics. “This is how we spell Probate. P R O B A T E” Kind of like Vince Lombardi starting training camp with the line “Boys, this is a football!”

      Join us if you can!


      • That’s classic Ron!! Nice to see you showing your sense of humour!! And no that is not a typo – we Canadians spell humour with a u. 🙂

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  7. Every Time I come here I all ways Seem to learn something New love it!

  8. Ron, I read your book. Its a great source of inspiration to start probate related investing. Thanks again.

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