Written by PJ Wade on Monday, 14 October 2013 1:24 pm
Are you staying in your home when it no longer suits your needs - physically, financially, or any other way - because bad reasons distract you from moving? Amanda Westrheim challenges you with the "Top Five" Bad Reasons for Not Selling. Do you recognize yourself?
When real estate owners are hooked on bad reasons for staying, they may overlook good reasons for selling and miss out on many levels.
- Sell your home because you can afford a bigger, better one somewhere you love, and you’ve got good reasons for selling.
- Stay in your home when it no longer suits your needs - physically, financially, or any other way - and you may be distracted by bad reasons to stay and not sell.
Take a close look at your decision to stay in your current home. You may discover that you're actually hooked on this way to preserve status quo, or that you’re overcome by mental inertia triggered by what keeps you stressed and worried.
- Real estate professionals are trained to help people make informed decisions to preserve the best of status quo while making progress in as many other ways as possible - whether that requires a move or not. These professionals also provide real estate solutions for adapting to significant change with the best possible results. This means they may see the flaws in your decision making before you do.
- Friends and relatives often have their own agendas and are limited by their life experience. They may also have equally poor decision-making skills. This adds up to them being less help than you or they, would like to admit.
- Too often, stress related to problems that keep us hanging on to "home" blinds us from decisions that make sense by solving problems and relieving stress.
Amanda’s Top Five Bad Reasons Not to Sell:
Do you recognize yourself in this list?
Bad reason #1: "I can’t afford to move."
Sellers who say this and believe it are confused by the difference between affordability and value.
- Those who mean they live in a house or condominium that meets all their needs and fits their budget - that’s affordability - have great reasons to stay.
- Sellers who mean that they are scraping by, often by deferring much-needed maintenance and foregoing life’s pleasures, actually can’t afford to stay, at least without making drastic lifestyle changes. Refinancing or renting out part of the house represent the type of solutions that may make this home affordable, but there may also be genuinely affordable housing out there. Have you really investigated all your options? Professional input will reveal the failing behind this bad reason to stay.
Bad reason # 2: "I’m used to the area."
Sounds more like you are bored. Development is changing the face of community after community, so familiar places are disappearing and will continue to do so. Don’t count on your neighbourhood and community staying the same over the decades of extended living that lie ahead for you. Look for permanence by exploring communities around universities and other learning centers, or natural wonders like National Parks or unique ecosystems like wetlands where your stewardship and contributions would enrich your life and others. What interests you? What is your dream connection? Although real estate markets are local, real estate professionals have access to the world through their brokerage and the internet. What would you like to explore first?
Bad reason #3: "There’s nowhere else I like as much as here!"
Really? Sellers who make this statement have rarely explored all the corners of their region or state, never mind the whole country or at least a few corners of the world. Are you really sure this is the best you can do? The best your money can buy? Real estate professionals make it their business to be sure about these things even if you don’t.
Bad reason #4: "I’ve no choice since I can’t afford the areas I really like."
Who says? Real estate values have taken some dramatic shifts and will continue to do so. Most sellers do not know exactly what they could sell for or exactly what comparable housing in their preferred neighbourhood would cost. Local real estate professionals do and they will tell you if you ask. More and more properties have separate income suites that make moving up financially feasible. You could even live in the suite and rent out the house until you can afford to reverse this arrangement. Take the positive approach, "How can I afford the area I really love?" and find an experienced real estate professional who enjoys achieving a challenging goal.
Bad reason to stay #5: "They’ll take me out in a box."
This statement always sounds more positive than it is. In the last century, life after age 65 represented a handful of quiet years. Now, extended living is the norm. This active, engaged living can last for decades. Digging in your heals to stay out of fear of losing control of your life and ending up in a "home" is a bad reason to stay. Get out and explore your housing options, everything from reverse mortgages to communal living choices, and waiting for that box may lose its appeal.
Runner-up bad reasons not to sell include:
- This is where all my friends are.
- This is where I shop/work...
- This beautiful summer garden makes up for everything.
- I renovated and I can’t do it again.
- I can’t stand the thought of packing and moving/cleaning out the basement...
The bad reasons to stay go on, but they are still bad reasons.
Perhaps you have your favorite? Love to hear it: firstname.lastname@example.org