DEAR BERNICE: I appreciate your helping people like me who are like babes in the woods when it comes to real estate stuff. My mom died recently in an out-of-state nursing home. I am the executor of her estate. Mom had no money and neither do I, but her house is paid for. That’s a good thing because I am recently unemployed.

The house sits on three-fourths of an acre that was originally two separate lots. The roof has major leaks, one of which caused a 2-foot-by-4-foot hole in the ceiling. Possums have taken up residence in the attic. They stare at me with impunity. Raccoons are now living under the house. I use bug spray to keep them from moving into the main house.

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