Inheriting a house can be a complex and emotional experience, especially when the property has squatters. In Colorado, squatters have certain rights, which means that you need to be well informed and prepared before selling an inherited house with squatters inside. This guide will provide you with all the information and steps needed to sell an inherited house with squatters in Colorado.
- Understand Squatter’s Rights in Colorado:
Squatters are individuals who occupy a property without the owner’s permission, and in Colorado, they have some legal protections. A squatter may claim adverse possession if they have occupied the property for a certain period, which means that they may acquire legal ownership of the property.
Therefore, before selling an inherited house with squatters inside, you need to understand the legal protections and requirements for squatters in Colorado. In Colorado, squatters can claim adverse possession if they have lived on the property continuously for 18 years, openly and notoriously, and without the owner’s consent.
Additionally, Colorado law requires that property owners provide squatters with certain notices before eviction, including a written notice to vacate and an eviction lawsuit.
- Hire a Real Estate Attorney:
To navigate the legal complexities of selling an inherited house with squatters inside, you need the help of a reputable real estate attorney in Colorado. A real estate attorney can provide you with legal advice and guide you through the entire selling process.
When hiring an attorney, ensure they have extensive experience in handling cases involving squatters and adverse possession. They can also help you understand your legal obligations and responsibilities as a property owner, including the notices required before eviction.
- Verify Your Legal Ownership:
Before you can sell an inherited house with squatters inside, you need to verify your legal ownership of the property. This means obtaining the necessary legal documents to prove your right to sell the property.
These documents may include a will or trust agreement, a death certificate of the previous owner, and a letter of testamentary or letter of administration issued by the court. Your real estate attorney can help you obtain these documents and ensure that your legal ownership is valid.
- Assess the Condition of the Property:
Inheriting a property can be a daunting task, especially when the house has squatters inside. Squatters are individuals who occupy a property without the owner’s permission, and they can be challenging to deal with. If you’ve inherited a property in Colorado that has squatters inside, it’s crucial to take the necessary steps to remove them before selling the property. In this guide, we’ll provide you with a comprehensive overview of how to sell an inherited house with squatters inside in Colorado.
Chapter 1: Understanding Squatters
Before we dive into the steps for selling an inherited house with squatters inside, let’s first understand who squatters are and what their rights are. Squatters are individuals who occupy a property without the owner’s permission. They often do this by breaking into the property, staying there, and refusing to leave. In Colorado, squatters have some legal rights, and it can be challenging to remove them without following the proper legal process.
Chapter 2: Legal Process for Removing Squatters in Colorado
The legal process for removing squatters in Colorado involves filing an unlawful detainer lawsuit against them. This is a legal proceeding that is used to evict someone from a property. To file an unlawful detainer lawsuit, you’ll need to follow these steps:
Step 1: Give the squatters notice
The first step in the legal process for removing squatters in Colorado is to give them notice. You can do this by posting a notice on the property, sending a certified letter to the property, or serving the squatters with a notice in person. The notice should inform the squatters that they are illegally occupying the property and that they need to vacate within a specific timeframe.
Step 2: File an unlawful detainer lawsuit
If the squatters do not vacate the property within the timeframe specified in the notice, you can file an unlawful detainer lawsuit against them. To do this, you’ll need to file a complaint with the court and serve the squatters with a copy of the complaint. The complaint should state the reasons why the squatters need to vacate the property and ask the court to issue an order for them to do so.
Step 3: Attend the hearing
Once you’ve filed the complaint, the court will schedule a hearing. You’ll need to attend the hearing and present your case to the judge. The judge will hear both sides of the case and make a decision on whether or not to issue an order for the squatters to vacate the property.
Step 4: Obtain a writ of possession
If the judge issues an order for the squatters to vacate the property, you can obtain a writ of possession from the court. This is a legal document that allows law enforcement to remove squatters from the property.
Chapter 3: Preparing the House for Sale
Once you’ve successfully removed the squatters from the property, it’s time to prepare the house for sale. Here are some steps you can take:
Step 1: Clean and repair the house
Before putting the house on the market, it’s essential to clean and repair any damages caused by the squatters. This includes fixing any holes in the walls, replacing broken windows, and repairing any damage to the plumbing or electrical systems.
Step 2: Stage the house
Staging the house can help potential buyers envision themselves living in the space. This involves decluttering the house, rearranging furniture, and adding some decorative touches.
Step 3: Set the right price
Setting the right price is crucial when selling a house. You’ll want to work with a realtor or an investor to sell the house fast at a fair price.