Many factors can impact the decision to sell your home, but how do you know when it’s the best time to sell? Here are six surefire signs it’s time to sell your home now.
Most of us don’t plan to stay in our first home forever. Maybe not even the second or third home. But knowing when it’s the right time to put your house on the market can be tricky.
If you’re lucky, a life event like a new job, new marriage, new child, will force the issue and compel you to make a move. But without a pressing reason staring you in the face, it can be hard to know when to let go.
We become attached to our homes for many reasons and it can be difficult to say goodbye. It can feel like breaking up with a loved one. Maybe you knew you would never be together forever, but it doesn’t make leaving any easier.
If any of the following scenarios resonate with you, it’s probably time to move on.
1. You’re Feeling Cramped
Your family doesn’t have to be growing for you to outgrow your home. If you’ve started working from home, for example, you might need an office area. Or maybe you’ve rescued a family of dogs from the shelter or never got over not having a sewing room… If so, your house might be too small.
Before cashing in, try pairing down on your belongings to see if you can clear up some space. Consider remodeling or adding on to your home. Finishing an attic or basement can be a quick fix. Maybe you need to add on a whole new story.
To decide which route to take, check with your local building and planning department to see what your local zoning law will permit. Get estimates from two to three contractors and consult with your local Realtor®. Sometimes adding on won’t increase the value of your home and you don’t want to spend a lot of money on big improvements that won’t bring a good return on your investment.
2. You Have TOO Much Space
Do you have way more house than you need? If you find yourself with an empty nest and too many unused rooms, it’s probably time to consider selling.
It can be difficult to say goodbye to a family home, but it may not be feasible to stay. If yardwork and house upkeep are getting to be too much, or soaring utility bills are cramping your style, it might make more sense to move.
3. You’re Over The Neighborhood
Maybe you’ve had it with your strict homeowner’s association, or your neighbors rented their house out to frat guys… Whatever the reason, neighborhood dynamics can change dramatically over time.
Or maybe you have changed. That 40-minute commute didn’t seem so bad a few years ago and the bar next door didn’t seem to be so loud so late. Or maybe your kids are getting older and school district matters. Your local neighborhood is important.
4. Remodeling Isn’t Worth It
Giving your home a face-lift or turning your backyard into a garden oasis may make your home feel like new again and be all you need to stay put for years. But that doesn’t mean it’s a financially sound decision.
Before making any significant improvements, study your local market to see what similar homes are selling for. It’s a good idea to speak with your local Realtor® to run COMPS for your area and get a value estimation. If your home improvements will cost more than you will get back in return, you should consider selling instead.
5. You Can Afford To Sell
Before you consider selling, you should have some funds available to prepare your home for sale. Most homeowners will make some minor improvements, such as painting, landscaping, or updating flooring, to get the best price for their home. Sometimes a seller will agree to repairs requested by the buyer. All of these costs will come out of your pocket at first, so it’s a good idea to have a cushion before you start.
6. You’re Ready To Compete
Don’t forget, you’re a buyer too! Once you sell your home, presumably you will need another place to live. Prepare yourself from the buyer’s perspective as well and investigate potential neighborhoods you would like to live in and visit open houses. Work with a lender to get pre-approved for a mortgage loan and consult with your local Realtor® for neighborhood and home advice. Your agent can also help you arrange a sale that is contingent upon you finding your replacement home.