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Should I Sell or Buy My House First?

The age old question.

Should I sell or buy my house first?

Should I put a conditional offer in on a property and then hope my property sells, before someone else buys my new dream home?

  • Perhaps I should just take a chance, put in an unconditional offer on a home and then hope everything works out and my present home sells.

These are all good questions whether you should buy or sell first and the answer to all of them is;

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Should I Sell or Buy My House First?

It Depends

First of all, whether you decide to put an unconditional offer, a conditional offer, or decide to sell your property first, you should have all the necessary contract forms on hand.

If you want excellent service from an A+ Better Business Bureau rating company and..... desire up-to-date lawyer written forms, that you can download with a click of your mouse, or have sent directly to your door, please check out the following link of my recommendations and why I choose them. Contracts and Forms

Let's examine some factors that come into play and how you might come to your personal best solution.

Financial Situation

How are your personal finances? Could I manage to own two properties at the same time, for a possible extended period of time, including perhaps two mortgages?

If the answer is yes, then the decision is entirely up to you. Instead of, "Should I sell or buy my house first", it becomes, "Which is best for me at this time?"

If you can't afford to carry two properties for any length of time without financial hardship, this may be an easy decision for you.

If you can carry two houses for say, 6 months or so, should I sell or buy my house first becomes a real exercise in analysis. A good idea is to look at some of the other criteria below for a decision.

Market Conditions

The next question you need to ask yourself when it comes to Market Conditions

The next question you need to ask yourself when it comes to should I sell or buy
my house first, is what are the market like where I'm living now?

It could be:

  •     A blazing hot market.

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  • A sellers market.

  • A balanced market.

  • A buyers market.

  • A "Nothing is Selling" market.

Why worry about market conditions? Well, if you are in a blazing hot market and everything is selling in a week to a month, the fear of not finding the right replacement home might be all too real. If the market is very hot, your present home will probably sell quickly as well. What should you do?

Unless you have cash available, go to your mortgage lender or mortgage broker, explain your situation and get qualified for a Bridge Loan, or another 1st mortgage for the new home.

You then, if desired, would be able to shop for your new home, and purchase before your own property is sold, or even on the market.

Not familiar with mortgage brokers? For an explanation, go to About Mortgage Brokers

CAUTION: Markets can change suddenly due to unforeseen calamities! Make sure you are comfortable before you decide whether to buy or sell first.

If it's a good solid sellers market, you might proceed as above, but you might want to make your closing date further down the road.

If it's a balanced market tread carefully, but you probably might want to consider a conditional offer, or just wait and see how the sale of your present property proceeds.

If it's a buyers market you might want to consider two different choices:

  • Wait until your property is sold first.

  • Put a conditional offer in on your next home. You can always firm it up later if you are comfortable doing so.

If "Nothing is Selling", should I sell or buy my house first should really be, CAN I sell my house?!

Just put all your efforts into marketing and selling your own home for sale  by owner and worry about buying later. There will be plenty of homes to choose from so there is no pressure.

Better Get Out The Big Guns!

If you asked yourself, "Should I sell or buy my house first" and decide to buy before you have sold, or if you have a conditional offer in on another property, hit the marketing BIG time.

Besides the newspaper, yard and directional signs, flyers, word of mouth etc., don't forget that all-important online advertising.

Do you want to have a presence on the biggest and best for sale by owner websites on the Internet? Find out where and why I consider these the best of the best. Website Choices

Should I Sell or Buy My House First

If you decide to put in an unconditional offer on a property before your home is sold, there are some real issues that could come back and bite you later.

If you aren't excited about owning two properties at the same time and renting one of the houses gives you a sick feeling in the pit of your stomach, you may just get desperate after a period of time and start your own "Going out of Business" sale.

should i sell or buy my house first

You start getting desperate and start to lower the asking price in a rapid fashion.

The downward spiral of the asking price might also be brought on after you move into your new dwelling, only to discover you can't really carry both homes and keep a lifestyle close to what you are accustomed.

If you decide to put in a conditional offer subject to the sale of your present property, you are probably going to pay more for the property you are buying.

An unconditional offer is much easier to negotiate a lower price.

In summary, the question of should I sell or buy my house first or buy first boils down to this personal opinion.

The only time I personally feel that it might be to most people's advantage to buy before you have sold is during those super "hot" markets when you can't even get your sign planted and the offers start coming.

Note: Another one of my: "That always amazes me" moments.

I've seen some of those "hot" markets before and could never understand why in most cases, owners would hire a Realtor to sell their house.

Why would they pay someone perhaps $10,000 - 15,000 for what might be a few hours work, when they could do it on their own?

I believe in most cases, it's because seller's think that selling their own house is more complicated than it really is. You have this website, so it should be easy for you. Right? :)

I am of course a big for sale by owner fan so I could be a bit bias! :-)

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