Timing is the key for retiring and selling your home

Dec 13th, 2021 | By | Category: Personal Finance/Consumers

If you’re a homeowner who’s retiring soon, you might be wondering: Is now a good time to sell my property and move to my retirement destination? With prices (and now interest rates) rising, and inventories continuing to plague buyers, it’s understandable to feel unsure. But here are a few reasons why it’s something you may want to consider.

It’s a strong sellers market.

Sellers in most suburban areas are seeing a huge spike in demand, mostly from city dwellers, for homes with more square footage, amenities and yards. However, low inventories are forcing prices to skyrocket. Bottom line: If you’re retiring soon, selling your current home could fetch a premium price and give you the extra funds needed to buy in your retirement destination.

Mortgage rates are rising.

This has two-fold implications: (1) Buyers might get priced out of the market if mortgage rates get too high. (2) You don’t want to pay more either. A word of caution: Trying to time the market to maximize sale price can backfire if you wait too long and lose buyers to decreased affordability.

The prevalence of remote working.

Remote working is affording buyers the opportunity to pick their home destinations without being strongly tied to their office. They’re also looking for amenities like bigger yards, waterfront properties, pools, playground areas, more land, etc. But even though space is what they’re after, some still don’t necessarily want to sacrifice urban amenities to get it. They’re looking for communities where they can walk to restaurants, shops, and more. What this means is that even though buyers are still looking in the more traditional areas, there are also more buyers looking in places that previously would have been too off the beaten path. So, regardless of where your home is, you just might have a top-dollar deal in your future.

Food for thought: Remote working can be an option for you, too. it’s entirely possible you can finish out your career in your retirement destination by utilizing work-from-home technology.

Renting could be the better option.

It’s common for those close to retiring to sell their homes early and rent for a couple years until they reach retirement. And while there’s evidence that the rental markets are starting to stabilize, prices are still riding the wave of increases brought about by demands for more square footage. But the flipside is that rentals come with less to worry about. Some retirees want to downsize or move to condos with all the amenities so they have less to take care of.

What to consider: The cost of renting may not be worth it if you can pay in cash for your new home outright, or if the cost of renting is close to, or higher than, your new home’s mortgage.

 

Audrey Somero, who wrote this article, is the marketing and communications coordinator at Homes.com, an online home sales marketer.

AFTER THE SALE, A CHECKLIST

The local housing market is exploding, causing baby boomers to seriously consider selling longtime homes well before they intended. Boomers (ages 57 to 75) make up 41 percent of those selling homes, according to the National Association of Realtors. They are hoping to cash in and pad their retirement funds as houses sell at lightning-quick speeds. They are also using this opportunity to “rightsize” and move into senior living communities or smaller condos.

To help with what can be a stressful and emotional process of getting ready to move after selling, Caring Transitions, a company specializing in senior relocation and transition services (its offices include one in Lakewood) has developed a checklist to, in the words of president Ray Fabik, “make the transition smoother.”

  • Don’t say things like, “Why did you hold on to this for so many years?” while sorting through belongings. Statements like this can cause stress.
  • Save photo albums for last. Too many memories can surface at once, which slow the process and trigger waves of emotions.
  • Set a timer and set it for one hour. Take a break once that hour is up.
  • Color-code objects with Post-It Notes: For instance, pink is pack, green is sell, and blue is give away.
  • Keep a schedule. If someone goes to bed at 10 p.m. every night, don’t try to keep packing late at night.
Share