Time to Sell?
To gauge the state of the housing market, I’ve recently had radio interviews with the owners of two local realty firms. Here are some nuggets of helpful information for any of my readers who are thinking about selling their homes.
It’s been apparent for a while now that we have entered into a strong growth market when it comes to home sales. Some believe this has been a natural result of the huge decline in home values that we experienced in the mid-2000s. But, are we at risk for another housing bubble? Of course, no one can say for certain, but hopefully the market will expand at a sustainable pace without eliciting worries of another “pop.” Fortunately, good signs include far fewer people with negative equity in their homes, a stable home inventory, and home builders returning to the local market.
So, if you believe that it is a good time to sell (before interest rate hikes, should they materialize in 2016, discourage potential buyers), here are a few very good tips to consider when hiring a realtor:
1. No place for friends. It may be an obvious point, but I’ll make it anyway: Keep money-matters and close relationships separate. You don’t want to lose a friend over a deal gone bad.
2. Professionalism. How well is the realtor dressed and how does he/she present himself/herself? A professional appearance is a plus.
3. Get personal. Ask the realtor, “How many homes did you sell last year?” (An average agent sells about 3.) “What is your level of education; do you have any specialized training?” (For example, do they have the GRI designation?) “How pro-active are you?” (Do they prospect for buyers?)
4. Marketing, marketing, marketing. Before signing a contract, ask, “What is your marketing plan for my home? What is your on-line strategy?” (On how many sites will my house be listed?) “Will photos of my home be taken by a professional photographer or by a realtor with a cell phone?”
One more thing to consider as you contemplate the sale of your home. If the sale is primarily to increase your financial resources or reduce the burden of your mortgage, a reverse mortgage may be a better option. You can stay in your home and take advantage of the equity in your property. We’d be happy to answer any questions on reverse mortgages; just give us a call!