Sell my house? Buy my next house? Which should I do first?

A consumer asked me… “If I have a house I need to sell before I can buy another home, how can I do it?  What comes first?” 

It’s sort of like the chicken and the egg conundrum.

In a buyers market, a buyer may be able to negotiate with a seller to enter into a contract that is contingent on the buyer selling their own home (this is called a home sale contingency).  In these cases, though, it presents a risk to the seller, and their agent will help them to evaluate that risk so they can decide if they should take it.  The evaluation will include conducting a market survey on the buyers home, among other things.  Buyers will have to demonstrate to the sellers that they have positioned their property to sell in the current market.

In a sellers market, it’s unlikely that the seller will agree to this.  Instead, they will wait a few more days and take the next, non-contingent, contract that comes in.  SO, then what?  What’s a buyer to do?

Well, in this post, preferred lender Marc Aymard has provided financing related alternatives to this, allowing the buyer to choose their new home first, and then sell their existing home, without having to make the contract for their next home contingent on the sale of their current home.  Not all buyers are comfortable with this… some won’t qualify, others just can’t handle the stress.

So the next option is for one to put their home on the market, and secure a contract that contains a seller contingency called a “Home Of Choice” contingency.  This is becoming more common.  This contingency allows that seller to then go and find the home of their choice… and make an offer that is  contingent only on the settlement of their home (which is much less risky than a full home sale contingency).

I guess the bottom line is there is not one answer that is always right… it depends on market conditions and the parties involved.  An experienced and skilled real estate agent can help you evaluate risk, provide resources and alternatives and determine the best course of action for your family. You can learn more about your real estate options so you make the best decision.

If you happen to be in this exact predicament, wondering how exactly you make all these puzzles pieces work together, well, you’re in luck.  I know how, and I can help you get the plan put together.  Contact me today and let’s set up our initial consultation…

Vicky Chrisner,Dulles Area REALTOR


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