Monday, December 17, 2007

Solve your Real Estate Worries with Four Questions

Are you worried about the current real estate market? Do you feel stuck in your home? You are not alone. Everyday I meet people who want to take advantage of the current market and purchase a bigger home. However, they need to sell their current home in order to afford the new home. Catch-22.

Will they be able to sell? Will they have enough money to purchase the new home? Should they wait and see if the market stabilizes? I wish I had a crystal ball. I don't. Honestly, no one knows what will happen to the Las Vegas real estate market (or any other real estate market). There are different opinions and everyone thinks they are correct. So, how can you make a decision when everything seems so up in the air?

Here are four questions you can ask yourself to help make your real estate decision:

What is it about this house or my situation that makes it not a fit for me right now?

Is it too small? Is it too big? Is the maintenance beginning to be too much of a burden? Is it the commute? List everything.

What are all the possible solutions to the problem?

Maybe you can add on to the home. Maybe you need some outside help. Maybe you need to organize and get rid of clutter. Maybe you need to look at rooms that are not being fully utilized and see if these can be converted to usable space. Of course, moving is also a solution on the list. List out all possible solutions. These don't have to be solutions that you will necessarily take. You are brainstorming possible solutions to see if any fit your situation.

Will any of these solutions work?

Next to each solution write out the pros, cons, and costs. This may take some research on your part. Solicit bids for possible remodeling jobs. Look up your homeowners association rules to see if an addition would be allowed. Get a comparative analysis of your home to see how much it could sell for and to see the average days on market. Also, look at the costs of selling the home.

Another thing to consider is whether your solution is a short term or long term solution.

What if .... ?

Ask yourself, what if ....? What if the market goes down further and I can't sell my home for what I think. What if the market goes up and the new home I want to buy will cost much more? What if I am transfered? What if I lose my job? What if I get sick? Don't just make a list. Make a list and write out how you would handle and feel about each situation.

Some people don't like to look at the what ifs of any situation. They feel this is negative thinking. However, I feel this type of thinking is very empowering. It reveals your strengths and weaknesses. It gives you an idea of those things you need to work on in your life.

Don't be pummeled back and forth by the current real estate news. Make your decision with a solid foundation of facts and a little bit of imagination. You may not be able to predict the future but you can certainly work your way through different scenarios and possibilities and know whether you would be able to handle these or not. Outside events do not take away your ability to make decisions.

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