6 Signs You’re Ready to Sell Your Home
Thinking about selling your house but not sure it’s the right time? Watch out for these 6 signs you’re ready to sell your home.
While the prospect of a wraparound porch may excite you or you might have your eye on an up-and-coming neighborhood, remember that the process of moving can be overwhelming. You’ll need to be prepared, both mentally and financially, for the work ahead.
Almost nine in 10 adults are satisfied with their housing situation, according to the Federal Reserve. But if your needs aren’t being met, it might be time to sell. When you’re ready to move on, the good news is there’s more than one way to sell your house, and some options are quick and painless.
But first, take the time to assess whether you should sell now or wait for different market conditions. If you notice at least a few of the following signs, it’s probably a good idea to start working with a real estate agent or request an offer from Sundae’s marketplace. Here are the six signs you’re ready to sell your home:
1. A Different House Would Better Suit Your Needs
Your family could be growing and you might want a house with more bedrooms, or you could be looking forward to your retirement and want to downsize to a one-story abode. If your current house isn’t accommodating you, it’s probably time to sell.
Think about your financial needs as well. You may have saved up enough to get premium features like a home gym or a pool, or you might be house-poor. If you’re spending more than a third of your income on housing costs, including your mortgage, property taxes, and maintenance costs, you’re likely financially strained. That’s especially true if you have other debts to worry about, such as student loans or credit card debt. If moving to a more affordable home would significantly reduce your financial stress, you should consider selling.
Selling a home can be costly, so if you’re strapped for cash, you may need to sell your house off-market. You might sell to a fix-and-flipper, sell to an iBuyer, or request an offer from Sundae’s marketplace. If you choose the third option, you’ll get a transparent offer price from an investor with no hidden fees and a $10,000 cash advance after your inspection to help with moving costs.
2. You Have Enough Equity and Cash in the Bank
You shouldn’t sell a house with negative equity unless you’re trying to avoid bankruptcy or foreclosure. If you can, wait until you’ve built at least enough equity in your home to pay down your current mortgage and come out with a 20% down payment for your next home.
You’ll also want to make sure you have some extra cash in the bank to support the move. You’ll want to factor in marketing costs, the cost of staging your home, moving costs, real estate commissions, and closing costs. If you won’t have enough cash flow to be able to cover these expenses, you should consider selling your house off-market.
3. It’s a Seller’s Market in Your Area
Real estate experts recommend selling your home if any of the following conditions are true:
- The prices of homes in your area are increasing
- The length of time homes are staying on the market is decreasing
- There’s a lot of buying and selling going on in your neighborhood
You might notice that homes similar to yours are selling at high prices. If that’s the case, you’ve identified an opportunity to walk away from your house with some serious cash. Even if you’re happy with your home and weren’t thinking about selling, you should consider taking advantage of the hot market.
4. You’re Prepared for the Work of Selling
Even if you’ve got plenty of money in the bank, you’ll need to be emotionally and physically prepared for the work it will take to get your house ready for sale. You should be ready to:
- Clean and declutter
- Make necessary repairs
- Stage your home
- Renovate your home to get it in turnkey condition
- Hire a professional photographer and update your lighting
- Host open houses
- Field offers from buyers and negotiate terms
If your house is significantly distressed and you want to avoid spending time and money on repairs and updates, consider requesting an offer from Sundae’s marketplace. You’ll get a fair offer price and will be able to move quickly without the hassle. If you’re aiming for the highest offer price for your home, however, you’ll need to be prepared to put the work in.
5. You’ve Reached the Maximum Capital Gains Exclusion
The capital gains exclusion is so generous that most people won’t reach the maximum. But if you’ve lived in your home long enough to realize $250,000 in capital gains (or $500,000 for married couples filing jointly), you may want to sell before your house appreciates in value any more. You can claim the capital gains exclusion again after two years have passed and you become eligible in your new home, so selling before you reach the maximum exclusion is a good way to increase your wealth-building potential.
6. You Don’t Have a Choice
It’s great to be able to time your transition to a new home so it aligns with favorable market conditions, but sometimes, you just don’t have a choice. You may be selling a house you inherited, selling a rental property that is no longer profitable or that you don’t have time to manage, or moving to another location because of a new job or transfer. Whatever your situation, consider your selling options carefully. If you need to move quickly, selling your house as-is could be a great option.