After moving into your home, it may become a place to unwind, a space for entertaining or a spot for making memories with family. But once you’re ready to list the property for sale, things may change. It can be a major disruption if you don’t know how to sell your house while still living in it. Luckily, it may be possible to limit your family’s discomfort by following these tips.
How to try and sell your home while living in it
When you’re ready to sell your home, there are several steps you’ll need to take before handing over the keys. Before listing the property, you’ll need to clean both inside the house and in your yard. Depending on how much stuff you have, you may want to consider buying a storage unit. Most buyers are looking for a home that looks new—without a lot of clutter.
If you’re eager to sell your house fast , consider working with a staging company to decorate your home. The process may take a few days to a couple of weeks. It may cost up to $300 to $600 for the initial consultation and $500 to $600 per room per month—but the investment may be worth it. Staged homes tend to sell 88% faster and for 20% more, according to Realtor.com.
For the best listing photos, you’ll also want to hire a photographer. The prices will vary, depending on where you live, but it’s another expense that may pay off. A study from Redfin found homes with professional photos sold faster and for higher prices.
You should also work with an experienced real estate agent to decide on the best list price. They will have access to nearby “comps,” or comparable homes that have sold nearby. After that, you’ll need to keep your home spotless—which isn’t easy with pets or children. Plus, you’ll want to make sure there are plenty of opportunities for showings.
Renovating and repairing your house while living in it
When your home needs work, you have to deal with an added set of challenges. These projects could range from minor inconveniences to major disruptions. You may even need to live elsewhere for some projects—like installation of new hardwood floors, for example. If you can stay with family or friends, it may be possible to bypass the cost of staying in a hotel. But you still may have to spend extra money without access to your kitchen.
How to stage your house while still living in it
There’s no doubt about it—professional staging can be the key to selling your home fast—and it may lead to getting a higher offer. But professional staging isn’t cheap.
It may be possible to work with the decor you already have or the stagers may recommend buying new pieces. The more you have to buy, the higher the price may become.
Staging may also cost more if you live in a multistory home because of the extra labor. If you have too many belongings, the stager may suggest decluttering. This may involve paying for a temporary storage unit. Professional stagers may also recommend a fresh coat of paint, which could range from $200 to $700 per room.
While it may be possible to stage the home yourself, you run the risk of your home taking longer to sell. This could be a big problem if you’re trying to buy another home or planning a move at the same time. By working with a professional, you will know the home is buyer-ready before it goes on the market.
Risks of living in your home while trying to sell
It can be tricky to try and buy one home and sell another at the same time. If you buy another home first, you’ll have to decide on the best time to move.
While it may be tempting to rush over to the new property, leaving your first home empty could be a mistake. Often, vacant homes spend more time on the market and sell for less money, according to Redfin. Still, there are some downsides to living in your home while selling it.
It can be tough to keep the home buyer-ready, even when you hire professional stagers. Pets and children make it difficult to keep the home spotless. You’ll also have to rearrange your schedule around showings, including when you cook to avoid lingering food smells.
Before prospective buyers arrive for a showing, you’ll also have to lock up your valuables and store anything private such as piles of mail, sensitive documents or your medicine.
Alternatives to living in your house while selling it
If selling your house while you’re still living there is too much of a hassle, you have other options. Some of these choices may include:
- Stay with friends or family. If you live close enough to friends or family, they may be open to letting you stay for free short-term. Depending on the arrangement, you may save on rent. But without access to your kitchen, you may still spend more money on meals. You will also sacrifice privacy. Living in close quarters with loved ones has the potential for conflict.
- Sublet a furnished apartment. It may be possible to find a short-term sublet in your city or town. If you’re willing to live somewhere smaller or less convenient, you may even score a deal on rent. The biggest downside is the extra expense—on top of what you’re already paying for your home.
- Extended-stay hotels or Airbnb. Another option may be staying in a suite at an extended-stay hotel or a monthly Airbnb. You will have access to a kitchen and on-site laundry. But depending on how long you stay, it could get expensive.
Work with a professional
Selling a home can be nerve-wracking, especially when you’re still living there. But two things can make the process easier: good organization and communication. The sooner you sell your home, the less inconvenient it will be. By working with an experienced real estate agent, the process may happen faster than you expect. Before you know it, you’ll be handing over the keys and moving into your next home.
Check out more real estate information at www.ownerly.com
Disclaimer: The above is solely intended for informational purposes and in no way constitutes legal advice or specific recommendations.