A house with a for sale yard sign in the front lawn.

If you’ve had your house on the market for a while and have seen no interest from buyers, it’s understandable that you would be frustrated. And the longer a home sits on the market, the more buyers start to wonder what’s wrong with it.

If you’ve watched the seasons turn (maybe more than once) and still your house won’t sell, you need to make a new plan. Which option is best for you will depend on your personal financial and life situations, but here are the five best avenues to explore.

1. Postpone Your Plans

What if you had your heart set on selling, but so did all of your neighbors? If the market is flooded with available homes (especially if they’re in better condition or at a better price point than yours), it’s going to be tough to make a sale. That kind of buyer’s market often spells disappointment for the sellers.

If you’re not in a time crunch or in a bind financially, your best bet may be to pump the brakes. The real estate market fluctuates constantly, so six months from now your house could be one of only a few available in your area, creating scarcity that will drive demand. If you’re able to hold off, your patience may prove quite profitable.

2. Get an Agent

If you’ve had no luck trying to sell your home on your own, it may be time to call in a professional. You’ll get the benefits of professional staging, photography, and listings as well as someone to coordinate showings and handle the extensive paperwork that comes along with selling a home.

Do your research first, make sure the agent has a proven sales record, and understand the costs up-front. While an agent may be able to help you sell your home on a faster timeline, they will take a percentage of your sales profit for their commission. You have to decide if the trade-offs are worth it to you.

3. Consider a Short Sale

If you’re upside down on your mortgage and scraping to make it by, selling your home quickly can feel like a desperate necessity. But what if you owe more than the house is realistically worth? You’re in a much tighter spot than the normal seller, but you do have a possible out.

If you can speak with your lender, they may agree to the terms of a short sale. This means that you’ll sell the home for the maximum amount possible and pay that amount in full to the lender, even if it doesn’t equal the total you owe them. They’ll agree to take that “short” cash and let you off the hook for the rest.

Be forewarned that short sales are not always an option. (It’s totally up to your lender to allow it.) In addition, these sales can take months or even years to complete.

4. Take Matters Into Your Own Hands

Maybe you’ve had your home listed with an agent and been unimpressed with the results. You could always go the FSBO (For Sale By Owner) route. This means that every penny you make from the sale will stay in your pocket because there won’t be any fees or commissions to pay out.

However, you’ll need to retain and pay a title attorney, and you’ll need to make absolutely sure you fully understand all the necessary paperwork and financial elements of the sale. It will also be your responsibility to make any needed repairs, to stage and photograph your home, and to create and manage the listings and showings.

5. Sell Quickly for Cash

If you’re tired of waiting around for the perfect time or the perfect set of circumstances to sell your home, selling quickly to a cash homebuyer may be your answer. You won’t be required to make any repairs or upgrades, nor will you need to photograph or stage your home. There will be no need to endure months of showings or hand over a percentage of your profits to an agent.

If you’re ready to say goodbye to a house that won’t sell, give us a call. The Buy Guys team works exclusively with individual homeowners, and we can get you a fair cash offer almost instantly and have you at the closing table in 30 days or less.

Don’t let your home become an unnecessary burden. Call today, and let us help you sell.

House icon sitting in the grass.

The question on many homeowners’ minds these days is, “Should I sell my house?” Like most things in life, timing is everything when it comes to real estate.

The industry is notorious for its fluctuations, so putting your home on the market this week could mean something entirely different from doing it three weeks from now. If you’re debating the best time to sell a house, there are a few things you should consider first.

1. What Does the Local Market Look Like?

There are a lot of elements involved in this one. First off, consider the broader market: Are homes selling in your city? How about in your neighborhood? If so, how quickly are they selling?

The shorter the DOM (days on market) number is for comparable homes in your area, the better likelihood you have of successfully selling your home—perhaps even for a higher price. If the market is flooded with available homes—especially ones comparable to yours—you may want to hold off for a bit.

Scarcity drives interest, and you’re likely to get a better price for your home if there is less competition from other sellers. If homes are flying off the market in record time, though, your area might in the midst of a boom that you should take advantage of.

It’s also smart to look for patterns in your local market. Spring and summer have always been considered high-season for home sales, but it may vary depending upon your specific location. Warmer climates often have more stable year-round markets, whereas many markets dry up once the school year begins. Florida specifically sees its peak home sale numbers yearly in the month of May.

2. What Is Your Timeline?

Deciding to move is frequently very emotional for a homeowner. You’ve put so much into your home over the years, and walking away can be tough. But if the space no longer meets your needs, it’s time to go.

Perhaps your kids are grown and gone, and your space is simply too hard to maintain anymore. Or maybe your family is growing, and you feel like you’re bursting the seams of your current home.

If you have the luxury of a bit of time to repair, stage, and show your home while looking for new accommodations, then you can watch the market more closely before making your move. If, on the other hand, you need to move quickly due to a change in employment or a sudden family issue (aging parents, an ill family member, a surprise pregnancy, etc.) you may not be able to wait until the timing is perfect.

3. Does It Make Financial Sense?

If you’ve lived in your home for a short amount of time, it can be hard to recoup your investment by selling. You need to have lived in your home for at least two of the last five years before a sale to avoid paying capital gains taxes on any profit you make from the sale. Likewise, if you’ve gone upside down on your mortgage (in other words, if you owe more than your home is worth), then selling now could mean taking a big loss.

On the flip side, if you have earned some equity in your home and the market conditions are favorable, selling now could be a smart financial move. The proceeds could help finance the purchase of a larger home if that’s what you need, or it could mean more available income for life’s necessities if you’re retiring or downsizing.

Time to Sell?

After evaluating your situation, if you feel like now is the best time to sell your house, consider what you want out of the experience. If you go the traditional route, you’ll be able to get slick professional photos and listings thanks to the assistance of a realtor, but you’ll lose out on some of the profit from the sale due to fees and commissions. It’s also likely that you’ll need to make repairs and upgrades to your home in order to fetch the best price possible.

If you don’t have a ton of time (or the budget) to fix things up and sit through months of showings and back-and-forth with potential buyers, then a cash homebuying company might be a better fit. You’ll be able to sell your home as-is and walk away with cash in hand. You’ll get the fair market value for your home with none of the hassle.

If you’ve been asking yourself, “Should I sell my house?” and the answer is yes, give us a call. The Buy Guys work exclusively with individuals and have helped thousands of homeowners move on to the next chapter of their lives by making their home sales quick and painless. We’d love the chance to help you do the same!

A home foreclosure sign.

The housing market crash of 2008 was a disastrous time for many homeowners. Home sales had been booming for years, and banks were handing out irresponsible—and untenable—zero-down loans like candy. When the recession hit and layoffs rolled in, many homeowners found themselves out of work and quickly upside-down on the mortgages they could barely afford in the first place.

The market has been focused on rebuilding and rebounding in the decade since, but many experts estimate that the bubble is once again becoming unstable and may burst soon. If you’re worried about the next housing crash potentially tanking your finances, you may be wondering how to protect yourself and asking, “Should I sell my house?”

It’s hard to know the best time to sell a house, but there are a few big things you need to evaluate if you hope to protect yourself from the next housing crash, which may be more a matter of “when” than “if.” To avoid defaulting on your mortgage, do the following.

1. Understand Your Budget

Lending isn’t as out of control as it once was, but many lenders still allow buyers to put down as little as three percent or less on the cost of their home. And real estate agents benefit—through their commissions—from selling higher-priced homes, so it’s in their interest to convince you that you can afford that spacious stunner you’ve got your eye on.

But don’t let a lender or an agent be the one to determine what you can afford. You should be spending no more than 25 to 28 percent of your monthly income on housing costs (mortgage, insurance, property taxes, and homeowner’s insurance combined). This way, if you fall into financial hardship, you’re not on the hook for a number you simply can’t meet.

2. Know Your Timeline

Many people buy a home simply because it feels like “time” to do so. But they often don’t think ahead about what the next five to 10 years of their life will look like.

If you think you may need to sell a home within five years of purchasing it, don’t buy it! It takes at least that long to level out your finances considering all the costs involved with buying and selling a home.

“Flipping” homes has also become very popular, but be aware that in today’s somewhat volatile market, you never know if you’ll be able to resell the home for a profit—or at all! It’s always a risk to buy a home you don’t plan to stay in for more than five years, so understanding your timeline and being comfortable with staying somewhere for a while if necessary is key. Otherwise, you’re better off renting.  

3. Protect Your Equity

Taking out loans against your home or leveraging that equity for other purchases is a very risky business. Yes, your home is a valuable asset, but you should avoid borrowing against its equity unless absolutely necessary.

Emergencies happen, but short of that, try to avoid tapping that well. And even for emergencies, do your best to have a different primary source of backup funding, such as a savings account or a mutual fund. Your home’s equity should be your last resort.

4. Get Out Now

If you’re worried that you’ve bought above your means or won’t be able to make your mortgage payments when the market inevitably takes a downturn, now might be the best time to sell a house. Prices hit a peak in the last quarter of 2018, and many major markets are starting to see falling prices and stagnation of sales. The time is now; if you’re in over your head, you need to take steps today to protect your family and your money.

If you’ve found yourself in a tight spot financially and are asking yourself, “Should I sell my house?,” give The Buy Guys a call today. We work exclusively with individuals, and our experienced team can get you a quote right away and help get you to the closing table in less than 30 days. Don’t take a chance and risk losing everything; make the smart call before it’s too late.

A distressed home for sale.

If you find yourself located in a less-than-desirable area of town, your home can easily become a hard-to-sell house. Whether the cause is heavy traffic, noisy surroundings, crime, or simply aesthetics, selling a house in a bad neighborhood comes with its own unique set of challenges.

Many homeowners find themselves in a situation like this when they decide to sell. Perhaps the area was lovely when you moved in but has since seen an increase in traffic or crime. Or maybe the surrounding homes have aged and fallen into disrepair, making the entire neighborhood look bad.

Whatever brought you here, the simple reality is that it’s harder to find buyers for a home in a neighborhood like yours. But not all hope is lost! You may not be sitting on property in the hippest part of town, but you still have a few viable options, including selling your house quickly for cash.

1. Drop the Price

It may pain you to realize this, but buyers won’t pay top dollar for a house in a bad neighborhood. Even if your house is in good shape, the downsides of your location remain. This is especially true if you live in a high-crime area.

There are buyers, however, who will accept the tradeoffs of a somewhat lackluster neighborhood if the price is right. Oftentimes when families are searching for small starter homes, they’re more willing to buy in the less ritzy part of town if it means they can stay under budget. They may also be willing to take on homes that need a little bit of TLC, which is often the case in more rundown neighborhoods.

Play around with the numbers, and see how much you’re willing and able to flex on your sale price. You might be surprised by how much interest you get.

2. Repair and Refresh

Doing some minor repairs and cosmetic touch-ups can make a hard-to-sell house come alive. Try applying a fresh coat of paint to brighten the walls, or plant some flowers in the front yard to enhance curb appeal. Small, affordable fixes like this can help potential buyers refocus on the positives of your home rather than fixating solely on the negatives of the surrounding neighborhood.

A word of caution here: Don’t spend too much. Many people think that doing expensive revamps of their homes will help cancel out the fact that it’s sitting in a bad neighborhood, but that’s not the case.

Costly upgrades will drive your asking price up and leave your wallet significantly lighter, and they still might not make enough difference to help the home sell. The name of the game here is keeping all changes minimal but impactful.

3. Sell As-Is to a Cash Homebuyer

If you’re not interested in investing time and money to make repairs or improvements to your home, but you’re also not ready to sell it for a loss, selling it as-is to a cash homebuying company could be a perfect fit. You’ll get a fair market price for your home but without having to set aside the time and money to go through the traditional real estate process.

If your neighborhood isn’t exactly known for its charms, it can be discouraging to figure out how you should go about selling your property. But selling a house in a bad neighborhood is possible! The Buy Guys have worked with many sellers in this exact situation to sell their homes quickly, and we’re happy to help you do the same. Call us today to learn more!

Green road sign that has the word inheritance on it.

Inheriting a home can be a very complex business. Depending on how you came to be in possession of the home (whether it’s paid for, and whether or not you have any co-owners), there could be many potential next steps from which to choose.

If you’ve recently inherited a house in Florida, you may be questioning your next move. This guide is here to detail your options, including your ability to sell the house fast for cash. First off, though, we need to answer a few questions.

1. How Did You Inherit—Deed, Will, or Trust?

It might not seem like it matters, but there is actually a big difference in how an inherited house in Florida should be handled based upon how exactly it became yours.

If you were given the house by deed, this means you were appointed the “remainderman” for the deceased’s estate, and when they passed, the house moved into your hands. There is no need to go through probate proceedings, and if you do choose to sell, you should have no issue, as your name will be on the title.

If your loved one died with them listed as the sole property owner but left you the house in their will, you’ll need to go through probate proceedings in order to move the title into your name officially. This means if you want to sell the home, you’ll need to complete that process first, which can sometimes take a few months.

If the deceased drew up a trust agreement declaring that you (or you and others) are entitled to the house upon their death, it will pass directly to you (and any other co-owners). If, however, the deceased leaves behind a spouse or minor children, you will have to go through the probate process in order to move the title to your name.

2. Do You Know The Tax Implications? 

Selling any asset for more than you paid for it can trigger capital gains taxes. But what if you didn’t pay for it, but rather inherited it? Unfortunately, you can still be on the hook for taxes if you inherited a house and want to sell it. Do you know your options? 

Tax rates change slightly every year based on inflation and other political factors. For the 2019 tax year, the tax percentages on house inheritance range from zero percent to 20 percent, depending on the amount of profit you made from the sale. 

3. How Do You Handle Probate?

If you need to file probate on the estate and the deceased has been gone more than two years, chances are things will move pretty quickly. With a good attorney, you could be set in as little as a week. If the person died very recently and you’re trying to sell the house, however, you may be in for a bit of a wait.

The probate process involves posting a notice to creditors in the local newspaper and giving any creditors who are owed by the estate four months to come forward. Selling a house in probate in Florida can take a little longer than normal, but once the judge declares you the new owner, you’ll be set to do whatever you wish with the property.

3. Is There a Mortgage?

If you inherit a home with an outstanding mortgage, you must assume the payments if you hope to avoid foreclosure. Each company will have its own process for how to deal with the homeowner’s death and move the account to your name, but you should alert them as soon as possible.

What if you can’t afford the mortgage? Under Florida law, a mortgage company cannot go after your personal bank account or assets if you choose to walk away from an inherited home and allow it to be foreclosed on. But should you choose to do so, retain a probate attorney to protect your interests.

4. Are There Other Owners?

The trickiest of all inheritance situations is when you inherit the property jointly with other family members. Under Florida law, all of you will be equally responsible for all financial obligations pertaining to the property, including debts and liabilities.

Typically one person takes point on being property manager, but beware that this can cause tension and resentment. If one of the owners is living in the house, that can also complicate things, as they may not want to pay their fair share, or they may refuse to sell despite everyone else wanting to. Immediately upon inheritance, all the heirs should discuss the situation and make a plan that’s agreeable to everyone (which is, sadly, often easier said than done).

If you have inherited a home, your options are typically to a) live in the home (or let one of the co-owners live in it); b) rent it; or c) sell it. Selling a house in probate in Florida can be a bit trickier, but if you quickly tackle the probate process, you’ll be good to go.

If you’re not interested in renting the home and being a landlord, and you want to avoid the infighting that often stems from sharing ownership of a home with siblings, selling may be your best option. If you’re ready to sell your inherited house in Florida quickly, call The Buy Guys today. We work exclusively with individuals, and we can have you ready to close and walk away with cash in your pocket in just 30 days!