If you’re thinking of selling, it’s a good idea to run through a quick financial health check and do your homework on current average home prices in your local area.
Making up your mind to sell your home can be a tricky process. Even when you’re under pressure to sell – because you need more space or you’re downsizing your home – it‘s important to take a good look at your finances and the current housing market forecast before taking the plunge.
What’s my financial situation?
As you’ve already bought a home, you’ve learnt important lessons about what’s involved in securing finance for a property purchase. If you’re debt-free with cash in the bank, selling your home and buying another is far less likely to be a source of financial stress. With fewer outstanding debts you should be in a much better position to get the right deal on finance for your next home. Knowing your financial limits when it comes to buying before you sell is also very important.
Can I afford to sell my home?
If you’re going to sell, a few smart investments in repairs, updates and maintenance can make a big difference to the final selling price. So you might need to have some money up your sleeve to pay for sprucing up your home for viewings with fresh paint, a quick makeover for outdated bathrooms or kitchens and a thorough trim and tidy up for the front of the house and gardens. Simple but clever styling tricks can also help.
What’s the housing market forecast for my suburb?
Knowing the approximate price you’ll be getting, now or in the future, can play a big part in your decision to sell. Taking a look at average home prices by city or state will give you a rough idea of what to expect for your own property if you decide to sell now. However, it’s important to get a clear idea of how quickly, and for what price, properties are selling locally. You can check the latest auction and sales results, or take the next step and organise appraisals with local estate agents.
If your home isn’t already located in one of the best suburbs to live in, think about whether it’s an area experiencing urban renewal and gentrification. New café and retail precincts, schools and hospitals or transport links could all make your suburb more popular, so you may get more if you sell in the future.
How is the economy affecting housing market predictions?
Current trends in interest rates are important to consider as they can have a big impact on the housing market and property values. If rates are already low and there is high demand from buyers, it could be a good idea to sell before interest rates rise again.
Should I buy or sell first?
Choosing to sell or buy first depends on your situation – whether you’re comfortable with renting while you search for your new home or can afford to cover double repayments if you’ve bought before selling. And housing market predictions will also play a part. If it’s a buoyant market, you’re more likely to find a buyer, but if you’re under pressure to sell quickly to make settlement on a new property, you may be forced to agree to a lower price.
Your financial circumstances will likely dictate whether it’s better for you to buy or sell first, so speak with your mortgage broker about your options.
Have you recently sold a property? How did you decide that the timing was right?