Selling a home can be more complicated than buying one. There are myriad factors to consider, and questions to answer. Should you renovate the bathroom? What are the legal and tax implications of the sale? There are several different professionals you can work with, including Realtors, lawyers and bankers.
Can you afford to take out a mortgage on a new house or should you first generate a reasonable return on your existing home? Will you rent for a while between selling the old and buying the new?
With research, planning and some professional help, a smooth transition is possible.
14 to 60 days on average
6% of sale price
0.5% to 2% of sale price
Identify a timeline to understand your options. A Realtor can help facilitate a quick move. Or if you’ve got some time, consider making some home improvements before you list.
There are several expenses associated with selling a house.
If you choose to sell your home without a Realtor, you also will need to pay for:
Yes. There are some money matters to consider, however. Selling your existing home first may provide you with a down payment toward your next home. Conversely, buying first gives you more flexibility in moving and potentially save more money in the long run. The right decision for you depends on your short- and long-term financial picture, as well as your moving timeline.
Remember, your current mortgage is part of your debt-to-income ratio, which may give lenders pause when reviewing your application for a new home. Consider getting preapproved for a bridge loan or new mortgage to get a clearer picture of your finances and ensure a smooth transition between your home purchase and sale.
The home’s list price is a major factor to a successful deal. A little prep work can go a long way in bumping up the price. Do a little research and a little spring cleaning to start. Some other ideas:
A lived-in house can shine with a fresh coat of paint and minor repairs — work that can greatly improve the asking price of your home. Avoid trendy decor that the new owners may not appreciate. Addressing big repairs can increase its value, as well, but invest only in the essentials for a better return on the investment.
Consider your budget, how much equity you have in your home and your timeline for selling to ensure that the returns are worth the expense. If a large-scale renovation is the right move, compare financing options, such as renovation loans, cash-out mortgage refinancing or home equity lines of credit.
Sellers have access to more tools and information than ever. If you have the time, market knowledge and finances, you may have success selling on your own. If not, you may be better served hiring a professional realtor or real estate agent.
Time on the market could be days or months, depending on a host of factors, many out of your or your Realtor’s control. If you want to sell your home faster, keep the following points in mind.
The Multiple Listing Service is a nationwide database Realtors use list homes for sale and to suggest homes for buyers to view. Only Realtors or For Sale by Owner (FSBO) services may post home listings here. MLS listings feed into dozens of home listing websites. There are free online sites accessible for the general public to list a home, but these sites reach fewer Realtors and buyers.
No. It is essential to know the buyer is preapproved for a mortgage and has sufficient funds to purchase your home. The type of loan isn’t relevant to the seller, however.
After an agreement on the purchase price is made, several important administrative steps follow.
Once all relevant paperwork is in order, the buyer will release any contingencies, you sign over the property title, and the escrow is closed. Realtors collect commissions at this point. Depending on whether the sale is made in a “wet” or “dry” close state, you may receive funds as quickly as the closing day.