Friday, February 5, 2010

When you must sell your home

Ilyce Glink, Tribune Media Services, says eventually you may need to try to move—and sell your former best investment, your house.

Out here in Arizona, our housing market is a disaster—most people I know are upsidedown. Many are looking into short sales—where you somehow talk the now-federally buoyed up bank to take pity on you and accept what you can get for the balance of your mortgage.

This year, 4 million more people will be foreclosed.

Man, doesn’t this blow?

Interest rates are low, which is good, but banks laugh you off if you try to reposition your mortgage to a lower rate.

Sellers need to really whip houses into shape and exceed all expectations.

Clean the house; stage it if it’s empty.

Invite at least three agents to price it, not just the agent who helped you buy it.

Be realistic about the situation. See what is selling on your block. How long was it on the market? Setting a high price (a wish price) and waiting and waiting may be worse than just setting a market price.

Research other neighborhoods—but don’t put in an offer until you have an offer.

Read everything. This is how many people ended up with adjustable rate messes.

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