Stay or move? How to Decide

Do you sometimes review the real estate ads in your local paper? Do you drive by an open house sign and feel the urge to stop and check it out? Those are common indications that, at least on some level, you’re thinking about the possibility of making a move.

But how do you decide if you should actually move?

The first step is to consider whether there are any practical reasons to consider buying a new home. What’s pushing you in that direction?

  • Is your current home too small for your needs?
  • Is the commute to work, for you or your spouse, too long? (Perhaps longer than you expected when you purchased the home?)
  • Are there property features you would now like to have, such as a larger backyard or a more spacious kitchen?
  • Has the area changed in an undesirable way?
  • Do you have personal reasons for wanting to move, such as a desire to be closer to relatives in another area?

Carefully consider those things that can’t change unless you move. For example, if a major highway was recently built near you, the ongoing sound of traffic isn’t going to go away.

If there are no practical reasons for moving, there may still be other reasons for wanting a new home. You may want to move your family to a better area, with better schools or you may simply want a bigger home, with a larger backyard, more rooms, and a wider driveway.

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with simply wanting a better place than the one you have now. In fact, that is a common reason why many people make a move.

The point is, if you’ve been thinking about a new home for a while, perhaps now is the time to take the next step. A good real estate professional can help you understand your options.

Understanding Market Value

If you were going to sell your car, what would you do? Well, you would probably check to find out how similar vehicles to yours are priced. Then you would set your advertised price within that range.

What you would be doing, perhaps without knowing it, is determining the “market value” of your car.

Market value is simply what buyers today are willing to pay for a particular product.

When you decide to put your house up for sale, one of the first things you and your real estate professional will do is determine the market value of your property. That’s important to know because if you price your home too much above its market value, you probably won’t get any offers. Alternatively, if you price your property too low, it might get snapped up quickly but you’ll have left a lot of money on the table.

How does a real estate professional help you determine your home’s current market value?

He or she will look at a variety of factors, such as the desirability of the area, the features of your home, how well it has been maintained, renovations and other improvements you’ve made, and of course, its location.

Your real estate professional will also review what similar homes in your area have sold for recently – which is, perhaps, the strongest indicator of current market value.

Once you know the market value of your home, you can make an informed decision as to how to price it so that it will attract the right type of buyers and the best possible price.

Should you price your home high above its market value in the hopes that some unwary buyer will purchase it? Unfortunately, that rarely works.

The good news is, your property may be worth more than you think. One of the best ways to find out is to invite a good real estate professional to your home to do an assessment.