If you’re thinking of shopping for your next home but haven’t sold your existing one, you may be wondering how easy or complex it will be. Managing the selling and buying of two homes at the same time can sometimes make you feel like you’ve taken up juggling. Here are some options to help you keep things as simple as possible while minimizing possible delays and expenses.
Choose one Real Estate Agent to handle both transactions
This may not be an option for you, especially if you’re moving to another city or state. But working with an experienced real estate pro can make a big difference. In addition to having a single point of contact during this time, a Real Estate Agent can help you make a successful offer on a home, review offers for your existing home, and assist you with scheduling important dates.
Stage your home for a quick, successful sale
Be sure your home is clean and uncluttered before potential buyers arrive, and your “curb appeal” is appealing as well. A professional cleaning service can be well-worth the expense as they’ll view your home as a visitor would, and can help you identify problem areas.
Preparing a home for sale is often described as “staging”, as it goes much further than cleaning. For example, removing some furniture may contribute to the illusion of larger rooms. So does hanging a large mirror. Check out more staging tips here
or ask your Real Estate Agent for assistance, as they can they can advise you how to sell your home quickly at a better price.
Plump up your cash cushion
Be sure you have some money set aside before you proceed. Here’s why:
If your existing home sells before you can move into your new home
, you may need to find a temporary place to live so the new owners can take possession. This will require funds to cover living expenses while temporarily “homeless”. You may need to finance a short-term rental, pay to store your furniture and appliances, and find a suitable boarding facility for your pets, if required.
If you buy a new home before selling your existing one
, you’ll be temporarily responsible for two sets of mortgage payments and utilities. Be sure to do the math beforehand, so you can make sure you have additional funds available – especially if you’re selling in a cool market with fewer buyers than seller. If the thought of paying two mortgages for more than a month or two is hard to swallow, you may want to look into a contingency clause
Consider a contingency clause
Home buyers and sellers often add contingencies
to an initial sales agreement. These address unexpected problems such as a low property appraisal, problems with financing, or structural problems found during a home inspection. Contingencies don’t always result in a failed sale, as both parties may opt to negotiate until an agreement is reached.
For example, your buyer may request an appraisal contingency
, which allows them to back out or renegotiate your home’s price if the appraisal value is lower than expected. As a seller, you can ask your existing home’s buyer to accept a contingency that states that the transaction is contingent on your ability to buy your next home within a certain timeframe.
Keep an open mind whenever possible
Perhaps you’ve already decided on the “must haves” for your second home, especially if they’re features your first home doesn’t have. Or you’ve decided you won’t take a penny less than a certain price for your current home. If it all possible, it’s best to try to remain flexible, especially as delaying your home’s sale or your new home’s purchase could result in delays or additional expenses. This is where working with an experienced Real Estate Agent is important, as they know the market, and know what is realistic to negotiate.
Get pre-qualified for your next home’s financing
A Stearns Loan Originator
can help you decide how much home you can afford while guiding you through a potentially complex transaction. In fact, getting pre-qualified might be one of the easiest tasks during your move … finding friends to help you pack is a different story.
Jul 10, 2019