Donna Fenn, provided by
Published 6:03 am PDT, Friday, July 12, 2019
- Selling your home is a major life choice that involves your likely most important asset.
- We asked experts what the perfect time is for people to sell their home.
- They told us six of the biggest signs that it’s time to put your home on the market.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Your home is probably your most valuable asset.
So how do you know when it’s time to maximize your return on that very important investment?
Unlike buying and selling stocks, your home carries a ton of emotional baggage, so it’s not simply a matter of buying low and selling high.
“Selling a home is never really a market-driven issue. It’s a lifestyle decision,” Holly Mellstrom, associate broker with Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s International Realty, told Business Insider.
We asked Mellstrom and financial planner Marc J. Lane for their advice on when the perfect time is to put your home on the market.
Here are their six biggest signs that it’s time to sell your home.
Your family is outgrowing your current home
Urban-dwelling families with young children have a lot more to consider than closets bursting at the seams and tiny apartments chock-full of baby gear.
A neighborhood that was great for a couple or a family with small kids may not be quite so desirable when it’s time to start thinking about school.
“The number one reason why people sell their home is that they’ve outgrown their space because their family is getting bigger and they’re shopping for a school district,” Mellstrom told Business Insider.
The mortgage and taxes on a bigger home may be intimidating, but so is private school tuition. Hence, a search for top-notch public schools quickly turns into a search for a new home.
Lifestyle shifts are compelling you to rethink your living space
Helen H. Richardson/Contributor/Getty
The home with the big yard (and taxes and mortgage to match) may feel empty and excessive when your kids have flown the coop.
Or perhaps you or your partner have decided to work from home or to start a business and you’ll need a home office.
Homeowners nearing retirement age could be thinking about aging in place, in which case a home with a ground-floor master suite seems essential.
If your life is fundamentally different than it was when you bought your home, it may be time to reassess: Is your home still serving your needs? If not, it may be time to sell and invest the returns in the next phase of your life.
You’re emotionally ready to sell your home
“The process of selling is many times an emotional roller coaster,” Mellstrom told Business Insider.
For instance, if you’re selling the home your children grew up in, that could tug at your heartstrings, and you may also get some pushback from them. Can you handle the potential resistance?
You’ll also need to declutter, and that could mean packing up some treasured mementos, putting some furniture in storage and generally making your house look as lean and clean as possible. If you’re living with small children and pets, that can cause some major stress. And of course, there could be a parade of potential buyers disrupting your routine, and possibly giving negative feedback.
It’s all part of the selling process, so you’ll need to prepare yourself to detach and let go.
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