You’ve thought about it, but aren’t really sure. You’re comfortable where you are, but the responsibilities and the daily routine of keeping your home in order are starting to wear on you. Plus the financial responsibility of whatever goes wrong, repairs and updating — oh boy, so much to deal with. If you have already updated and your home is in spectacular mint or excellent condition, now might be the time to sell, while prices are still where they are.
But as I mentioned in a previous column, the market has been softening, as more families and millennials leave New York state and other high-priced and taxed states, because I believe that the saturation point has been approached. Prices will go up maybe by the rate of inflation or not all and probably will soften further on the higher-priced and taxed homes. The tariffs that have been imposed by both the United States and China have also put a damper on both economies, which are intrinsically connected from head to toe. If you do your own research and look back over a hundred years, they never accomplished anything but to make the consumer and the industries supplying them, pay more for goods and some services. It’s similar to a lawsuit between two large companies to see who will survive the longest, without coming to the table and negotiating a fair and equitable settlement. Nothing will be accomplished unless one party realizes that the outcome will be more costly in continuing the battle, no matter who may be right or wrong.
Of course, we know China has consistently taxed our goods unfairly, as well as absconded with some of our intellectual and industrial secrets. But coming to an equitable and fair compromise has eluded us and so all we are doing is a “tit for tat” battle, with most likely no winner and only losers, just us the American consumer. These types of events will only make the real estate market more volatile and put pressure on prices, since we are in the longest expansion of our economy since 1854. As they say, what goes up will eventually come down and I see the evidence already. So if you don’t want to lose equity, although you may be happy where you are, consider downsizing as a viable choice. This may be your best financial decision today, even though you were considering moving maybe within five years. While purchasers are still active and able to buy, you might want to “strike while the coals are still warm” by putting your home up for sale. Of course, there is a lot of planning, so start doing it.
Now, if you are in a rental, but really want to buy and have the necessary down payment and can afford the monthly “nut,” then now is a good time to also begin thinking about it, while rates are very low. If you have young children or plan to have some, then your long- term plan will be to pretty much stay put in whatever home you may buy, let’s say 20 years. I believe at that point, all things being equal, the market will have come back from what we may experience in the near future, as markets go up and then recede, looking back at past history. So you weather the storm and sit tight and all should be OK. Also, if you are in a co-op, depending on what you paid for it, getting into a home, with the interest rates being less than 4 percent now (lower now than they were last December), would be a great opportunity, even if you lose some money. Because some home prices have softened enough to make the difference worth looking at and what you may potentially gain, maybe a wash or possibly a benefit if the home price has been adjusted down enough to gain more than what one might lose in selling now.
Renting, as has generally been shown, is a dead-end street and the lower-priced rentals have been escalating, especially in the excellent school districts, due to those deciding not to take the plunge and purchase. Renting, due to affordability and other reasons, may have been your only choice now or for the foreseeable future, but building equity and future wealth has generally worked through ownership. No one can guarantee the future, but based on the past it’s a stronger and more secure bet than staying in a rental. Even if your present home is too small and you cannot expand it properly or don’t want to bother dealing with the construction, moving up in the market, as long as you will be staying in place five to 10 years or longer, is an excellent time to consider moving on, especially when financing your next place.
Philip A. Raices is the owner/Broker of Turn Key Real Estate at 3 Grace Ave Suite 180 Great Neck. He has earned designations as a Graduate of the Realtor Institute and a Certified International Property Specialist. Receive regular “free” updates of sold homes in your area and a “free” Comparative Market Analysis” of what your home would sell for in today’s market or search on: WWW.Li-RealEstate.Com If you would like to receive a digital copy or a printed copy of “Unlocking the Secrets of Real Estate’s New Market Reality Or “Our Seller’s Guide for “Things to Consider When Selling Your Home” just email or snail me (regular mail) with your name, email and cell number.
He can be reached by email, at:Phil@TurnKeyRealEstate.Com, or by cell: (516) 647-4289