Ask any real estate agent how the market is and you’re almost sure to get the same answer: “Great!”
Even if the market is great, is selling your home right now a mistake? Many real estate agents will tell you that NOW is the right time to sell. They can’t know that without knowing the specifics of your situation. Before going down a long and stressful journey, let’s first decide if selling your home right now is a mistake.
What’s true about relationships is also true about selling your home. When it’s time to make a big decision, go with your gut feeling. But like anyone who has ever put off a decision, it’s amazing how you talk yourself out of it. You’ll say you’ll get around to addressing the ‘80s curb appeal. But you can live with your shoebox-sized closets. And you don’t mind that the location limits your job opportunities. Really, you’re fine.
Yet, you still can’t shake the feeling that it’s time to go. Though there are many ways to justify staying put, some of the most common doubts can be particularly persistent.
Here’s how to identify these hang-ups so you can finally move on and own the home you truly want.
“Will selling my home right now cost me money?
Markets are about timing. Yours could be on an upswing and selling could mean you’re missing out on receiving more for your home next year. However, markets can also just as dramatically swing the other way, just like they did in 2008. The lesson? You can’t really time the market. Instead, focus on easy tasks in your control that can help your home sell for more. Decluttering, painting your room’s neutral colours, and even cleaning up your yard can sometimes bring a home’s value up. Regardless of what the market is doing.
“I don’t qualify for a different home.”
If your credit is weak or gotten worse and you’ve spent all your savings. It might be a mistake to sell your home right now.
Or you cannot afford to keep up with the maintenance and your home is looking rundown? It might be time to consider a sale? Or, like many the home seems to be bigger than you need. Many times homeowners do not even realize that they actually only use and live in three or four rooms.
This is one of the trickiest thoughts about selling because it seems reasonable. You know your budget and you’ve probably even looked up what homes have been selling for in your neighbourhood. But after researching, you honestly know you just don’t qualify for a new mortgage right now. Why put yourself in a position that you need to rent! Don’t be selling.
“My friend who’s a real estate agent told me I should sell now.”
Working with close friends and family may not be the best decision. At first thought, it seems like a great idea because they know you. But imagine how bad you both will feel five months from now if your home is still on the market.
Take time to think hard about who you’re hiring to sell your home. If your friend or family member feels like the best decision for you, go for it. Working with the right real estate agent can take the stress out of the selling process. That said, treat this decision like you would for anyone else who would provide a service.
Interview a few agents. This can help you find the best fit for your personality or even your home. (especially if you have a unique property such as a vintage home). Focus your questions on their past experiences selling in your area. Ask a lot of questions. Like, how long they’ve worked in your market. How well do they know your neighbourhood? From speaking with several real estate agents, you’ll also get a sense of how they communicate. Yes, communication is key. If you “click” and they boost confidence, the process will be stress-free. All without hassles.
“I have a lot of costly repairs before I can sell my home”.
Depending on the age of your property, your agent may suggest making a few repairs. The extent of repairs needed often has to do with the comparable homes in your area for sale. For example, if there’s a home comparable to yours, but that one has a brand new roof? The agent may suggest replacing yours. But, you don’t necessarily have to make expensive repairs if you don’t want to. You could sell your home as-is. Some buyers like the idea of updating and customizing a property to exactly suit their needs. Others do not want to incur costly repairs on day one.
“I’m afraid to start over in a new location.”
This is often the underlying fear when you have doubts about selling and moving to a new location. Is it a change? Yes. But, it’s not one you wouldn’t get used to. If you’re moving to a new town or city, the transition is obviously a bigger one. Look at it as an adventure. It’s a chance to start fresh, meet new people, find new favorite restaurants, and maybe even start a new career. Only you will know if selling your home right now is a mistake. Consider your options of pros and cons.