Is it time for YOU to make a change?
A month ago you were graduating high school, two weeks ago you were getting married, and last week your kids were introducing you to your first grandchild. Okay, the time line is off a bit, but the point is time flies! Then, one day you wake up and the house doesn’t seem as busy as it once was and you wonder “Do I really need this much space?” So what is next?
As a Realtor in Corpus Christi I get to meet a variety of wonderful seniors who are ready to make a change. Many are exploring their options. Some are selling their home, buying an RV and heading out to see the country, some have sold their home in another state and are coming to Corpus Christi to enjoy the warmer weather, others are downsizing and looking for a comfortable space that they don’t have to maintain themselves.
The question I am most often asked by people who are ready to sell their home is “What do I do first?”The first step is to meet with a Realtor to determine the fair market value and to develop a strategy for selling your home. Realtors are not all created equal so be sure to interview them. You should be comfortable in asking questions and not feel bullied or rushed. A good Realtor will explain the process to you and answer all of your questions. They may also suggest things you have not considered such as packing personal items so that the potential buyers who come to see the house don’t feel like they are invading your privacy.
The second most common question I get is “Do I have to make repairs?” No you don’t. There are a lot of buyers, including investors like myself, who are looking to buy homes in need of repair. Of course a house that needs repair will sell for less money. You need to decide which is most important to you, selling quickly without doing any repairs or spending some time and money to “fix it up” and get top dollar. Getting top dollar usually takes a bit longer because it takes time to make repairs, and getting the house in shape to bring top dollar can also be expensive. But, the inventory of homes for sale in Corpus Christi is very low right now and interest rates are ridiculously low, so homes are selling fairly quickly when they are priced correctly. Ultimately, if you plan to do repairs to get more money you’ll want to ask yourself “is the juice is worth the squeeze?” If you’re going to spend $8,000 to increase the sales price by $8,000 it doesn’t make a lot of sense.
Another common question is “What do I do with my stuff?”I suggest having a conversation with family members. Let them know that you are thinking of downsizing and ask if there is anything that they might like to hold onto. I’ve heard many stories from people who were surprised by the item or items that their family members cherished. The next step might be to have a garage sale, or hire an Estate Sale Company to liquidate your belongings. As with Realtors, you should interview Estate Sale Companies and choose the one that is best suited to your needs.
One of life’s most challenging responsibilities is to settle the estate of a loved one. So, downsizing your estate, is a good way to protect your heirs from having to face that inevitable challenge in the future.
Whatever you choose to do, I hope I have given you some things to think about and I wish you a happy and healthy life, wherever you are.