7 Ways to Tell It Might Be Time to Sell Your Home

Posted by Laine Smith on 1/8/17 10:00 AM

Topics: Home Renovations Selling A Home Home Improvement Home Equity Home Value

You’ve been hunting local real estate listings and dreaming of a larger backyard, kitchen, master bedroom, etc., but you’re not sure if it’s the right time to make that leap and sell your house. Here are several good reasons why you might want to take advantage of the market and upsize or downsize.

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Your Home Doesn’t Fit Your Lifestyle

Whether it’s your location, your HOA, your long commute to work or your neighborhood, needs change. What may have been ideal for you five years ago may be a nagging reason to move now.

You’ve Outgrown Your Square Footage

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Even if you live in a sizable home, everyone has the potential to outgrow his or her space. Whether your kids are resenting their shared bedrooms, you work from home and need an office space or you simply desire a larger yard, garage or living space, the need for more room(s) is a popular reason to sell.

You Have Too Much Square Footage

There comes a time in homeownership that you may have to consider the fact that you have too much space. The upkeep of unused bedrooms and living space can seem burdensome for empty nesters on top of a large yard and landscaping to maintain. Downsizing might be the right choice for homeowners who just aren’t feeling right in their family-size home anymore.

Remodeling Doesn’t Make Sense

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Should you stay or should you go? Many homeowners are often faced with the scenario of remodeling their current home to make it meet their needs or wants or listing and buying a home with those needs or wants.

As far as remodeling goes, it may not make financial sense for you to do a room addition or an upscale kitchen remodel, even if it’s what it would take for you to stay put in your home. Consider comparable homes in your area. Would your must-have remodeling or renovation project out-price your neighborhood? Is it worth the investment? If not, you may be better off selling and buying again.

You Can Afford to Prepare Your Home for the Market

Yes, you’ll make money come closing day, but you also need to account for the cost of preparing your home to sell. Certain home improvements like landscaping and fresh paint can help your home sell quicker and deliver a higher return than your original investment.

It’s a Seller’s Market

High demand, limited inventory and low mortgage rates have the potential to put the ball in your court as a seller. Just remember that if you’re planning to buy again, you could find yourself in a competitive market, as well.

You Have Equity

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According to CoreLogic, 92 percent of homes with a mortgage had positive equity at the start of 2016. Why is equity important? If you have a $200,000 mortgage balance but your home is valued at $250,000 (and sells for that price), you’ll be able to pay the costs of selling your home and use the extra toward your next down payment.

Talk to a real estate agent about comparable properties and their appraised values to get an idea of your own home’s value.

If you’re thinking of selling your home (and buying again), one of the first steps you should take is consulting with a real estate agent so you can determine what needs to be inspected and/or repaired and set a timeline for when you want to list. If you’re planning to buy again, you’ll also want to consult with your mortgage banker to make sure your finances are shipshape for your next mortgage.

For more information about upsizing or downsizing your home, download our free Upsizing & Downsizing Guide.

Download: Upsizing/Downsizing Guide

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