Why You Should (and Shouldn’t) Sell Your Home in 2024

– Don’t Miss 10 Tips for Selling your House Fast at the end –

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Debating whether to sell your house now or wait? The answer is: maybe. Selling your house is a big decision with many factors to consider before putting up the sign in your front yard.

There are many situations that might make selling your home necessary – whether it’s moving across the country to be closer to family, downsizing, or not being able to afford mortgage payments anymore.

However, if your timeline to move is flexible, you’ll want to strategize on when and how to place your home on the market to attract buyers, maximize profit, and make it easier to buy a new home if that’s your next step.

If you’re unsure about selling, you have a few options: you can put your house up for sale to take advantage of the current low inventory, wait to see how interest rates and inflation evolve, or decide to stay in your current home for the foreseeable future.

Here are three reasons you shouldn’t sell your home in 2024, along with three reasons it’s a good idea to make the leap in the next 12 months:

Why You Should Wait to Sell :

  • Unfavorable Market Conditions
  • You bought or refinanced within the last couple of years.
  • You’re concerned about affording your next purchase.
  • You’re worried about finding your next home.
  • Upsizing
  • No Selling Strategy
  • A Property in Bad Condition

Why You Should Sell in 2024 :

  • Favorable Market Conditions
  • You’re not deterred by high interest rates.
  • You have a clear understanding of your home’s value.
  • You need to move.
  • Downsizing
  • Investing

Why You Should Wait to Sell :

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  1. Unfavorable Market Conditions

One of the most apparent reasons why waiting to sell is the best option is current market conditions. For example, if mortgage rates are high, fewer people will be looking to buy properties.

Another unfavorable market condition for sellers is high housing supply. When many properties enter the market simultaneously, competition among sellers becomes more intense.

2. You bought or refinanced within the last couple of years.

If you’re one of the many homeowners who have moved or refinanced in the last few years, there’s no reason to consider selling your home in the immediate future. Hopefully, your low mortgage payment has helped ease any financial concerns.

Ahead of 2022, many homeowners were able to lock into mortgage rates below 3%, making selling in the near future far less attractive. Unless other factors make a move necessary, enjoy the low interest rate you locked in and continue building equity in your home.

Mortgage rates have fluctuated since 2022, peaking at 7.79% for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage during the week of October 2023, according to Freddie Mac. As of March 28, 2024, Freddie Mac reported the average interest rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was 6.79%.

If you secured an interest rate below 3% – or even 2%, for some homeowners – you’ll see little incentive to more than triple your interest rate for a new home. And you won’t be the only homeowner feeling locked into your property based on mortgage rates.

“While it is likely to diminish, the mortgage lock-in effect is still going to keep a sizable number of homeowners from selling in 2024,” says Danielle Hale, chief economist for Realtor.com. “Per the latest data, 90% of outstanding mortgage debt has a rate below 6%, with 65% of the total at a rate less than 4%.”

Homeowners may start to see more reason to move as mortgage rates drop below 6%, Hale adds.

3. You’re concerned about affording your next purchase.

Over the past couple of years, concerns about affording your next home purchase have been tied to the housing market’s rising prices and the lack of new homes for sale. Now, with interest rates between 6% and 7%, there seems to be little financial benefit to buying a new home. Don’t be afraid to wait to sell your home if you think the timing isn’t right.

Even with substantial home equity, your buying power may be reduced when you consider the higher monthly interest payments.

 “That’s a tough financial calculus, and that’s keeping the more discretionary sellers out of the market right now,” says Lisa Sturtevant, chief economist for multiple listing service Bright MLS.

If you can’t afford the home you want next, it makes sense to wait before putting your house on the market.

4. You’re worried about finding your next home.

Housing inventory still remains low, despite a 0.3-month increase year over year in February, according to a recent National Association of Realtors report. Many homeowners are choosing not to list their homes for now. While there are fewer buyers than at the peak of the coronavirus pandemic, more are returning to the market than you might expect.

“Despite affordability challenges, buyers are finding ways to make the math work,” says Orphe Divounguy, senior economist for Zillow. “Many millennials want to become homeowners. Lower inflation has led to higher real wages and financial wealth, and we are also experiencing a surge in population growth. All these factors support housing demand. The limiting factor remains inventory; there are not enough homes available for sale, which keeps costs high.”

5. Upsizing

Have you just had a baby or are you planning to expand your family? Or maybe your elderly parents are moving in with you. Situations like these may require you to sell your current home to buy a bigger one.

But while the idea may be exciting — or unavoidable — you might still decide to wait a little longer to get your finances in better shape, for the market to become more favorable, or to put together a solid plan of action.

6. No Selling Strategy

Selling a property is a business endeavor that requires a well-thought-out plan to succeed. One of the main reasons you may want to sell your house is to make a profit — but do you know what will happen once the property is sold?

Do you have a plan outlining where you will relocate to or how you will invest the money from the sale? If the answers to these crucial questions are no, then it’s better to wait.

7. A Property in Bad Condition

While it’s not necessary for your property to be spotless when you’re ready to sell it, it should at least be in good condition. Consider addressing any repairs, maintenance issues, and incomplete projects before putting your house on the market.

Why You Should Sell in 2024 :

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  1. Favorable Market Conditions

As mentioned earlier, if market conditions favor sellers, you shouldn’t hesitate to make your move. The key factors to pay attention to are interest rates and housing inventory.

When interest rates are low, more buyers are enticed to enter the real estate market, creating more opportunities for sellers. If this is the case in your local market, take advantage of it and consider preparing your property for sale.

Supply is another crucial factor. When there are few homes available for sale, demand and prices soar, and the available properties usually sell quickly.

2. You’re not deterred by high interest rates.

Mortgage rates reached higher levels in 2023 than in recent memory. For many homeowners, that’s enough to opt to stay in their current house. For others, the interest rate isn’t as much of a concern.

“There may be buyers that are not as rate sensitive,” says Mike Reynolds, vice president of investment strategy at Glenmede, a Philadelphia-based wealth management firm. You may be a cash buyer without plans to finance your next house at all, or you may have enough equity in your current home to feel confident you can buy down your next mortgage rate to a more attractive level.

The more prolonged period of interest rates above 6% has also given many would-be homebuyers the opportunity to get used to the prospect of higher mortgage costs – it may require an adjusted budget, but it doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t make a purchase.

“Buyers seem to be OK with the idea that a mortgage rate in the 6% to 7% range is the norm, not the exception,” Divounguy says.

Plus, at the end of the day, there is no way to perfectly time the market. If you can afford to move and want to move, selling your home in 2024 may be the best timing since there’s no way to know what lies ahead.

3. You have a clear understanding of your home’s value.

Many housing markets across the U.S. are still seeing plenty of buyer interest, but properties aren’t getting the regular bidding wars and sky-high sale prices they were in 2021. If you sell your home in 2024, buyers will be less inclined to offer above the asking price – and they may not look at all if the asking price is too much.

Divounguy says the houses selling fast today and receiving more than one offer are those that are priced to sell and offer all the marketing bells and whistles, like a 3D home tour and professional photography.

Unless your real estate agent says otherwise, based on recent sales in your area, you’re unlikely to get $100,000 above the asking price for your starter home without an appraisal contingency. With buyers looking carefully at their budgets, they’ll be making serious offers based on what makes sense for their budget and what they believe your home is worth.

4. You need to move.

If you need to move for any reason, it’s still possible to sell your home and find a new one. If you’ve lost your job and are worried about paying your mortgage, selling may be a valid option. Many others are choosing to move for life changes, such as relocating to another state, needing more space for a growing family, or requiring a larger home for permanent work-from-home arrangements.

A profitable sale and purchase of a new home is still possible – but proper preparation and realistic expectations are key.

“Today’s homeowners should carefully review their home equity situation,” says Hale. “With the typical home listing price up 40% from just five years ago, many home sellers have a substantial equity cushion. This means they are likely to walk away from a home sale with proceeds that can help reduce the amount needed to borrow for their next home purchase.”

However, don’t expect the Federal Reserve to quickly drop rates in the event of an economic downturn. Although mortgage interest rates are technically independent of the Fed’s funds rate, they often mirror its changes.

“The Fed’s going to be very careful not to reignite inflation that has become very sticky,” says Reynolds, who expects mortgage rates to remain high through the end of the year.

5. Downsizing

The kids have flown the nest, retirement is approaching, or perhaps a household member has sadly passed away. All of these are valid reasons to sell your house and downsize to a smaller, more manageable property.

6. Investing

Your finances are in good shape, and you are ready to invest in a bigger and better property. If this sounds like you, then there is no reason to wait. If your house is in good condition, now is the time to sell.

Tips for Selling Your Home in 2024

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If you’ve decided that selling your home in 2024 is the right choice, the tips below will help ensure you achieve the best possible results.

Organize Your Finances

First things first: your finances. Getting your finances in order is crucial whether you are buying a house or selling one.

This is especially important if your property needs any repairs or redecoration, as is often the case. You must also account for expenses such as real estate agent fees and commissions, marketing and listing costs, and home staging.

Partner With an Excellent Real Estate Agent

There are many ways to sell a property, but one of the most effective is to work with a trusted and expert real estate agent. Look around your area to find someone with strong local knowledge, a great reputation, and plenty of experience with home sales.

Complete All Necessary Repairs

We’ll say it again: Before putting your house on the market, take care of any necessary repairs. Fortunately, many sellers find these are mostly minor issues, such as leaking faucets, outdated décor, and worn-out carpets.

However, if a thorough home inspection reveals that your property needs major work, you’ll have to bite the bullet. Seek out reputable, honest, and professional contractors, as it’s unlikely you’ll have all the skills, tools, and time to handle the work yourself.

A word of caution to sellers who feel the need to completely overhaul their property to please potential buyers: That’s not always necessary, and it can be very expensive.

Adding a sunroom, building a new home office, or undertaking other elaborate home improvement projects at this stage will not only cost you a lot of money but is also unlikely to add significant value to your property.

If you have the money and time to undertake one big project, focus on the kitchen or the bathroom—these are the two key rooms in most houses.

Clean and Declutter the Interior

Before putting your house on the market, ensure every room is clean, tidy, and clutter-free. This not only helps potential buyers see you as a serious and trustworthy seller but also showcases your house in its best light.

While decluttering is something you might want to handle yourself, as it involves valuables and personal items, cleaning is best left to a professional company. Although it will cost more money, it will save you time and hassle.

Remember Curb Appeal

Once the inside of your house is in tip-top shape, it’s time to focus on the outside—specifically, curb appeal. The exterior of your property is crucial for making a great first impression on visitors and buyers. If you find any work that needs to be done, don’t hesitate to address it.

Even if everything looks good, there’s always room for improvement. Adding a few new plants or shrubs, updating lighting, or enhancing the walkway can attract interested buyers quickly.

Assemble a “Dream Team”

Even if you aren’t planning to put your house on the market for a few weeks or months, it’s wise to start contacting contractors now. This will give you ample time to compare quotes, read customer reviews, and assess skills and specialties.

Unsure where to start? Consult your real estate agent. If you’ve chosen one with excellent local knowledge and industry expertise, they can connect you with trusted contractors from their network and may even help you secure a better deal.

Stage Your Home for Maximum Appeal

Last but certainly not least, selling a house in 2023 can be much easier if you opt for home staging. This helps potential buyers envision themselves living in the house and highlights the true essence of the property.

Professional staging requires a significant investment, but you’ll quickly see that it’s worth every cent. If your budget doesn’t allow for professional staging and you believe you can do it yourself, give it a try before contacting a professional.

Home staging doesn’t have to be complex or extravagant. Start by removing personal items, such as photographs, vacation souvenirs, and other personal valuables. Then, invest in some nice, inexpensive accessories. New cushions and throws in neutral shades, indoor plants, and a few table lamps will instantly give your property a cozy, welcoming feel.

Additional FAQs

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If you’re still uncertain about selling your house in 2023 and need more advice, check out the additional information below.

Should I Sell My House Now Before a Recession?

According to a recent study by Bankrate, there’s a 64% likelihood of the U.S. economy slipping into recession in 2023. While this might trigger a desire to sell your house promptly, it’s crucial to consider various factors before making a decision. If market conditions align with your situation, selling sooner could be advantageous. However, if you’re not fully prepared, it’s wise to hold off for now.

When would be the ideal time to sell a house in 2024?

Typically, the prime periods for selling a house are spring and the initial weeks of summer. During these times, the weather is pleasant, natural light is abundant, enticing more frequent house showings, and many individuals aim to settle in before the onset of fall and the holiday season. However, the decision of when to sell your property ultimately rests with you. As highlighted in earlier sections, numerous factors like market dynamics, financial considerations, and the condition of your property influence this choice. While spring and summer stand out as favorable seasons for selling in the real estate market, it’s crucial to weigh all pertinent factors before reaching a conclusion.

Is it possible to buy and sell a home simultaneously?

Certainly, you can both sell your current home and purchase a new one simultaneously, but it requires careful planning. Collaborating with a reliable real estate agent and an experienced mortgage professional is crucial to navigate this process effectively. Negotiating closing dates and timelines is essential to ensure a smooth transition, as you wouldn’t want to sell your house before having a new one ready for occupancy. Anticipating and addressing any potential issues or delays in either the selling or purchasing aspects is vital, as they can impact each other. Given the potential stress involved, having a well-thought-out plan is essential for success.

Is it possible to sell my house without the assistance of a real estate agent?

Working with a proficient real estate agent can significantly expedite, enhance, and maximize the profitability of the selling process. However, there are drawbacks, particularly the potentially high cost of hiring a good agent.

If you’re inclined to avoid these extra expenses, you have the option to market the property independently. Utilizing multiple listing services (MLS) can broaden your property’s exposure and reach. Additionally, seeking support from For Sale By Owner (FSBO) websites can be beneficial.

MLS websites facilitate listing your property across various real estate platforms, thereby increasing visibility to potential buyers. Conversely, FSBO platforms offer a plethora of tips, resources, and guidance to navigate the selling process without a real estate agent. Before proceeding, it’s advisable to review our resource on the cost of selling your house without an agent.

Is it necessary to stage my home before putting it on the market for sale?

Although not mandatory for selling a home in 2023, it’s crucial to ensure that your property appears appealing in both photos and in-person viewings. To achieve this, we recommend collaborating with a professional photographer or videographer who can capture high-quality images and footage of your home. This approach allows you to highlight specific rooms or features that may be especially enticing to your target audience.

We trust that this guide has addressed numerous inquiries and alleviated some concerns you may have had.

10 quotes to inspire and motivate potential buyers to consider purchasing your house:

  1. “A house is made of bricks and beams. A home is made of hopes and dreams.”
  2. “Your dream home is just a key turn away.”
  3. “The best investment on Earth is Earth.”
  4. “Finding a house is easy. Finding a home is harder. We’ve made it easier.”
  5. “Imagine your life in this beautiful home.”
  6. “A new home is a place for new beginnings.”
  7. “Turn the key to happiness in your new home.”
  8. “Discover the joy of coming home to your dream house every day.”
  9. “Where love resides, memories are created, friends are always welcome, and laughter never ends.”
  10. “The first step to a better life starts with finding the perfect home.”

Tags: sell house for cash, sell my house right now, sell my house fast, sell house cash now, real estate, home prices, housing market.



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