Picking The Right Time To Sell your Home as a Retiree

The real estate market is an ever-changing landscape of housing inventory and property values. While this can seem to be a bit unnerving for homeowners who are considering using their home values for retirement, it is important to realize that the housing market goes through cycles. Over the last few decades there have been times when the housing market has thrived and times when it has declined. Like the stock market, the housing market will continue to have times of increase and decrease in value. Traditionally over the longer prospects, most property owners will see a substantial value increase after 20-30 years.

For people who are concerned about assuring they get a certain value for their real estate Gaithersburg MD homeowners should note that there are times when it would be best to consider selling earlier than anticipated. This is especially true for retirees. In many cases, retirees wish to use their home appreciation for retirement will find great benefit in a peak sale. In these circumstances, it is important to keep a pulse on the market for the two or three years leading up to the time when you have traditionally considered selling it.

Because the market can be cyclical, taking advantage of a peak sales time period can be vital to retirement funds. However, the housing market does not usually run on individual schedules. Because of this, it may be helpful to be flexible on when you would consider selling your home as you near retirement. There are some very important factors that affect the housing market that can be key in determining value. These factors include:

• National Economic Conditions and Forecast
• State Economic Conditions Including Unemployment
• Federal Interest Rates for Mortgages
• Local Tax Rates and Tax Hikes
• Neighborhood and Town-wide Sales Trends

Each of these areas can affect value significantly. If any of these trends have a negative long-range forecast, the value of a home can be reduced by tens of thousands of dollars. Because of this, it is essential for retired homeowners to look at what the best time to sell will be to sell their home based on these factors. Typical real estate booms will last for 1-2 years. The years leading up to it and the cooling off period will often still allow homeowners to reap the benefits of increased values unless there are sudden drastic changes. However, it is important to note that when the market is booming, home sales will usually occur at a rapid rate.

Planning Ahead

For retirees who are looking to get the most out of their home appreciation, it would be advantageous to build an early relationship with a realtor to check in with from time to time to verify what the current real estate trends are. Doing this will help retirees get the most out of the opportunity to sell their home at the right time. In general, typical housing markets will require a home be on the market for 60-100 days before it sells. However, this can be a shorter or longer time period depending on how the overall market trends are.