To Buy First or to Sell First?

There is no easy answer to this question. I feel it comes down to one thing, your comfort level. In an ideal world you find the perfect home about the same time you get an offer on your current home and the closing dates match great. Shockingly I find that it really does happen that way more often than not, but there are times that it doesn’t.

Do you have somewhere you can stay if you sell first and do not find a home quickly?

In a hot market your home will probably sell quickly and you may find that you haven’t found your perfect home quite yet, or worse your finding homes you like, but the market conditions are creating multiple offer situations and you aren’t winning. In this case, is there someone you can stay with while your search continues? Or could you consider renting something briefly? There are options available to you in this situation, but these are decisions best discussed and researched at the time you list your home for sale, not when you have an offer in front of you.

Or…. Can you afford to have two homes for a short time?

In a slow market you could find that you may find the perfect home but yours isn’t sold yet. Meaning you face the possibility of having two homes for a short time. Most lenders will allow this, and in some cases with the stipulation that you have an offer in place on your current home before the closing of your new one.

One of these scenarios is likely more appealing to you than the other (although I understand neither is perfect). But I feel it’s important to discuss the worst case scenario before it may arise. Conditions on the sale of a home or on finding a home you like are highly unpopular and often won’t even be considered, so it’s best to have plans researched or in place before you begin the process of buying or selling.

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