Thinking About Selling?
Here are a few questions that may help you decide:
You've got equity on your side
For most homeowners, being financially ready to sell your house comes down to one factor: equity. For the last several years, home values have been on the rise—by leaps and bounds in many cases—and that means most homeowners are building equity. Their homes are now worth more than they owe on them, and that trend will persist as they pay down their mortgages and home values continue to increase.
Figuring out how much equity you have may sound complicated, but the math is actually simple. First, grab your latest mortgage statement and find your current mortgage balance.
Next, you'll need to know your home value. While it's tempting to use figures from online valuation sites to determine how much your home is worth, they're not always accurate (not even Zillow). Ask an experienced real estate agent to run a free comparative market analysis (CMA) for the best estimate.
Once you have those two numbers in hand, simply subtract your current mortgage balance from your home's estimated market value. The difference will give you a good idea of how much equity you have to work with if you decide to sell
You can afford to buy a home that fits your lifestyle better
Another factor to consider is how well your home meets your everyday needs. Perhaps you could use another bedroom (or even two) to accommodate your growing family. Or maybe your kids have all moved out and you're ready to “right-size”. Empty nesters can really benefit from selling while rates are low. It's freeing to sell a large home, pay cash for a smaller one, and invest the rest for your retirement. Whether you're sizing up or down, you want to make sure your mortgage fits your budget.
You can spend a little to spruce up and to actually MOVE
Don't get so carried away by the excitement of your next home that you forget to account for the cost of leaving your current one. Hiring professional movers? Save up to cover the cost of packing up and hauling your stuff to your new destination.
You should also invest a little to get your current place ready for prime time. Focus your home improvement dollars on paint, curb appeal, plus kitchen and bath upgrades, as those are the main features Buyers look for. A little bit of fresh paint and elbow grease can go a long way into making a great impression—and getting your home sold fast!
BONUS TIP: Now is the Time to have a FREE Walk-And-Talk with me for professional advice on what stays, what goes, and what needs done.
You're emotionally ready to sell
If the numbers show you're financially ready to make a move, great! But don't forget—selling your home is an emotional issue, too. Before you ask me to plant the "For Sale" sign in the front yard, take a minute to answer just a few more questions:
- Are you ready to put in the work to get your house ready for house hunters?
- Are you committed to keeping it ready to show for the long haul?
- Are you ready to hear the reasons why potential buyers believe your home is not perfect?
- Are you ready for honest negotiations over what buyers are willing to pay for your home?
- Are you really ready to move out and leave the place where you have made memories?
I’m not trying to talk you out of selling! I just want you to be completely ready when you do decide to move on to the next stage of your family's life.
You Understand the Market (a Little Bit)
No one can predict how the housing market will perform. But because of the existing home shortage, the National Association of Realtors expects growth for existing homes for years to come. With rents up and mortgage rates down, many renters are looking to buy their first home. There's just one problem: They're having trouble finding homes for sale within their price range.
If you took economics in school, you learned all about supply and demand. When supply is down and demand goes up, prices trend upwards as well. That means your home might be worth more than you think.
You Have a Real Estate Agent
The reasons already mentioned are essential to consider before selling your home this year. But remember, your real estate market is unique—and so is your financial situation. Partner with a pro you can trust to provide honest advice so you can do what's best for you and your budget. A good agent puts service before sales—but knows how to get things done when it's time to sell.
As a real estate agent, I navigate more than just scheduling showings of your home. I bring experience and confidence to the table handling many tasks at once, including:
- Giving you advice about updates or repairs that will make your home more attractive
- Helping you set a price for your home
- Marketing your home so it receives as much exposure to potential buyers as possible
- Scheduling showings with potential buyers
- Advising you as you negotiate offers
- Handling all the required paperwork to keep us both on track, and legally correct!
When it’s time to sell your home, don't trust an amateur with one of your biggest financial investments. Work with a high-octane, highly experienced agent who knows your market, and listens to your needs!