Probate sales are sales that are conducted by the State after a person's death. This process usually takes one to two years to complete, at which time the assets are distributed to the heirs. The person who the Probate Court appoints to do this is the Executor. If an executor has the consent of all heirs, they may sell the property at any time without Court confirmation or going to auction. Most people believe that prices are usually higher when a Court confirmation isn't required. There are thee levels of power that an Executor may have. The first is 'No Power.' This means that any actions that are taken must be approved in a Court hearing. Second is 'Limited Powers' which means that the Executor may do everything except sell the property without Court approval. Finally, there's Full Power, which means the Executor may act completely independently of the Court. For more information about specific probate laws in your state, contact a real estate attorney in your area.