Your Realtor sits down with you, comparable home sales spread out on the kitchen table. The news is not good, yet the evidence is there. There is no disputing the data: if you want to sell in a buyer’s market, you are going to have to price your home at a price that will sell, and that number is much less than what it would have been many years ago, before the real estate market took a painful tumble.
But if you are both selling your existing home and buying another home, chances are your net will be about the same if you are able to negotiate a good deal on the other end as well.
That is important to know. A lot of Sellers are not factoring that “silver lining” into their thinking. They are just focusing on the fact that they are going to have to take a huge hit on the sale of their home, and often will simply talk themselves out of plans to make a move. They are frozen in place.
That is understandable. Bad news sells soap and cars and gadgets. But when you consider that other homeowners across America are getting the same news from their Realtor about pricing their home in line with today’s market, you should be able to swing a pretty good deal for yourself, taking the sting out of the hit you have to take on your primary residence.
Here are a few tips that can save you some serious money:
Give yourself time to interview Realtors, and hire the best Real Estate Team in town. You will want to hire a Listing Specialist for the home you own now, and it is important to hire a Buyer Specialist to help you with the purchase of the next home.
Why is that important? It is certainly not imperative to hire two separate specialists. While it is possible to find an aggressive Realtor who is just as adept at marketing homes as in representing you on the buying side, there is a lot of value in finding someone whose sole purpose is to do one thing and do it well, versus trying to be all things to all people. It makes sense to hire someone whose time is not divided up between marketing your home and racing off to show property for three days to out of town buyers.
Price Your Home To Sell Quickly
Now that you have hired the Listing Specialist, listen to her good counsel on pricing your home to sell quickly. Don’t misunderstand: this should not be a “giveaway” price – but a price that will command attention and get buyers scrambling to see it. Think of the money you will save by selling your home in 30 days instead of 180 days: you will save five months’ worth of mortgage payments and taxes, which can add up to thousands of dollars back in your pocket, not to mention the stress and strain of having your home on the market for an extended period of time. Your best chance for your very highest and best possible offer is in the first 30 days on market.
Find A Great Bargain In Your Next Home
Your Buyer Specialist should be a great listener. He will take lots of notes on exactly what you are looking for in your next home, and go to work to find a home that not only suits all your needs, but is also aggressively priced. The last thing you want to do is pay top dollar on the buying side, so make sure your Buyer Specialist knows you are expecting to make up the shortfall on the sale of your home by finding a great buy on the next home.
And they are certainly out there. Sellers across the nation have seen enough media coverage of the housing situation to know that they are in a stiff competition, and are slicing and dicing home prices in an effort to beat out the other Sellers to the closing table.
There are also bank-owned properties and short sale opportunities, but in order to qualify to buy one of these homes, your home needs to be under contract.
Take Advantage Of Historically Low Interest Rates
These rates will not last forever. Let’s look at the savings you can enjoy by just a 1 % difference in interest rates:
Using a round number of $200,000 as a mortgage amount, a principal and interest payment based on a fixed conventional 30 year mortgage at 4.5% interest is $1,013.37.
If that same $200,000 mortgage was calculated at 3.5%, the payment drops down to $893.09.
That’s a monthly savings of $120.28, and over $1,200.00 yearly. Over time, you can enjoy tens of thousands of dollars in real money that you can keep in your bank account.
The best deals and the best interest rates are available right now.
Do Your Own Research
Your Buyer Specialist will provide a very detailed comparative market analysis on homes of interest to you so that you can make an educated decision as to what type of offer you are willing to make on a home. She can also direct you to online sources about the area school statistics. In addition to the market analysis, your Realtor will try to find out if there are any environmental hazards nearby, if there are any zoning changes coming up that could negatively affect the property’s value, etc.
There are things you can and should do as well, such as research crime statistics in the area. Talk to people living near the home you are considering buying. You would be surprised at the nuggets of information you can get from the neighbors!
The moral of this story is: If you would really like to make a move, don’t let what is happening in the real estate market keep you frozen in fear. Obviously if you are just selling and not in a position to buy, you really need to think long and hard about the reasons you want or need to sell in a soft market. But if you are lucky enough to buy as well, it will in all likelihood all wash out the same for your bottom line.