The following is an excerpt from The Locale Real Estate News. Read the entire newspaper here.
ASK MARY SUNDERMAN
My husband Jack and I have lived in our home for over 15 years. We raised our kids here. There are plenty of memories that we very much cherish. The kids are all grown up and the house is just too big and quiet. Also, there is too much maintenance. We have been travelling a lot lately and find it rather inconvenient to tend to such a large house. We know we should sell rather quickly but we are a little apprehensive about the whole process. We are also not quite sure we want a house or condominium. If it is a house, we will need to downsize; something else that seems a little unsettling. Anyhow, I am curious if you could provide some suggestions that will alleviate the doubt that comes from selling our very special home?
A : Dear Rose,
First, I want to thank you for reaching out for advice. As a real estate agent and homeowner, I know firsthand
how important it is to make your house a home only to put it on the market for someone else to enjoy. Just like the cycle of life, homeownership follows the same pattern. As you contemplate the next chapter of your lives full of more traveling and new experiences, I urge you to be as optimistic as you are realistic.
Here are a few suggestions to help ease your mind when you finally decide to put your gem on the market:
PREPARE YOUR HOME FOR THE IMPENDING SALE:
ou may be thinking does my home have feelings? Maybe not actual feelings but think of all the positive emotions your home evokes and promotes. One of the first things prospective buyers look at when they enter a house is the “feel” of it. Is it homey? Can I see myself on the corner of that couch with a good book after a long day of work? Do I like the colors on the walls? Paint is a huge factor when considering sprucing up and a good agent can help you neutralize your home. You may also want to omit anything that takes away from the positive feelings you want to induce. You do not have to do all this alone. Be sure to hire an agent that knows how to stage your home. Staging a home is crucial in this competitive market and hiring someone who is an expert will definitely help!
CONSIDER YOUR HOUSING OPTIONS AND FINANCES:
This one is mighty important! Earlier you had mentioned downsizing. Once you sell your home; you will switch roles and become a buyer. This means you will have to plan your finances accordingly. The transition can be a little daunting but again, with the right agent to do the leg work, it can go smoothly. Most sellers looking to downsize can still reap benefits of exclusivity by purchasing a condominium. It’s a great alternative and most gated communities have accessible amenities such as club houses, swimming pools, picnic areas etc. Make sure you ask your agent about all your options.
This is a new and exciting step in your life. Do not forget to bask in the impending adventures that await you and
your husband. As you treasure the memories of your old home, remember there will be new ones to add to your journey.
Thank you for your question, Rose. Please do not hesitate to call me if you need anything. I’m always happy to
help. Good luck!