Personal property (furniture, jewelry, art, etc.) is sold to satisfy estate debts and costs of administration. Generally, most heirs desire a liquidation of the estate, to receive a cash distribution. The Public Administrator works with known heirs to determine the desired disposition of property, when there are sufficient proceeds to pay debts and costs. Some items may be distributed in-kind to heirs. The value of the items is then deducted from the receiving heir's share. Heirs may attend auctions and purchase any items from the estate.
Real property (house, vacant land, commercial property, oil & mineral rights), is also sold to satisfy estate debts and costs of administration. In the event the estate has sufficient cash to satisfy estate debts and costs and an heir desires to retain the real property, the heir should speak directly with the Public Administrator's staff to formalize an agreement.
All sales are governed by the California Probate Code. All probate assets are appraised by a Court appointed appraiser. All real property is sold at auction or by private sale after notice of sale and subject to confirmation by the Court.