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The Signs It's Time to Sell Your Home

Updated on April 7, 2016

Selling your first home can often be a process that people are hesitant to start. After working tirelessly with their real estate agent to find a house to fit their budget, lifestyle, and desires and putting effort into improvements and maintenance projects over the years, many will choose to stay in that house even if situational factors have changed.

The right time to sell will be different for everyone, but there are some signs that can point you in the right direction. Being able to identify these signs is a challenge that many homeowners face. The truth is, neglecting the signs that it is time to sell can have some repercussions, some worse than others.

There are two majors sign that it’s time to consider selling your home.

Increase in For Sale Signs Going Up

One of the biggest literal signs of it being the right time to sell is “For Sale” signs popping up around your neighborhood. Some may try to argue that all the sales could be because everybody is fleeing from the neighborhood, but that’s usually not the case. If you love your neighborhood, then the chances are that your neighbors do too.

An uptick in the number of homes for sale means there is probably a pretty good motivator to sell, and more often than not that motivator is an increase in property value.

This can also mislead the buyer. They often hear, “if there are several For Sale signs in the neighborhood, something must be wrong.” It might be a challenge that you face in selling your home, but the right real estate agent can help in communicating with potential buyers the actual reason for the sudden movement and turn it into a benefit.

Your Finances Tell You So

An internal signal of what may be the right time to sell is your personal finances. When buying your first home your finances may not have been in the most pristine shape, so selling your first home and moving to a new one could not only allow for a better lifestyle fit, but a better fit financially too.

If you’ve eliminated all your non-mortgage debt and have three to six months of expenses saved away in a rainy day fund, there’s a pretty good chance you’re set up well to purchase a new home.

Not to mention, your credit is most likely much better than when you did purchase your first home. What does this mean for you? A better interest rate on your mortgage which will save you a ton of money.

A big indication the equity you have in your home. Many say 20% equity is the magic number. Why? Being able to put the traditional 20% down on your next home can help avoid having to pay Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI), which could also save you hundreds of dollars each year.

What is keeping your from selling your home?

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Knowing the Value of Your Home

If you’re looking for another financial sign to sell your home, look no further than the recovered value in your home. If you’ve been eyeballing a new home but haven’t been entirely sure about affordability, a good next step could be to ask an experienced agent to run a free comparative market analysis on your home to find an approximate value.

Even better, ask multiple agents to do it to get most accurate average possible. From this estimate you’re looking for your home to have recovered enough value to equal at least 20% equity for your next home. 20% is because putting that amount down on a new home gets rid of private mortgage insurance and lowers your monthly mortgage payments.

Selling Your Home

If now is a great time to sell your home, you want to make sure that you’re working with an experienced agent that has the right tools to get your home sold. Some think they can go the FSBO route, but that end badly for several reasons. You can find out why in the article below this section title, FSBO Financial Pitfalls When Selling Your Home Yourself.

It is always best to work with a proven and experienced agent. The process of selling your home can actually be quite difficult, not to mention stressful. There is so much that one must know and understand throughout the entire process. One trip-up could cost you, big time. Using a professional is smart, and you'll be happier with the results.

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