If you’re considering moving, you likely have a lot of questions running through your mind while you decide if the time is right.
How long do most people live in the same house? A recent study from The Mortgage Report shows that most people live in a home for an average of 10 years.
Is there a “best” length of time to stay in one house? According to the same report, in most cases, those who own a home at least 5 years take less of a hit when selling, especially on expenses such as mortgage payments and closing costs.
As much as you may have planned on staying in one place, life gets in the way. Sometimes you need to sell and move on… but is selling a house after 3 years way too soon?
Reasons You May Need to Move Within Three Years of Buying a Home
Even if it makes the most financial sense to hang on to a house longer, it’s not always possible. Multiple factors come into play when determining how long to stay in a home.
Common reasons to move after just 3 years of ownership include:
Maybe you’ve been offered your dream job… in another state. Perhaps your spouse has been promoted, but getting to the new worksite would mean a tough commute.
Layoffs and job loss may also necessitate a home sale and move, especially if your current payment becomes unaffordable due to unemployment.
Changing Health Status
If you or a loved one experiences a change in health status or a health emergency, you may have to move. Medical debt can accumulate quickly, making a less expensive housing payment a must.
Maybe you need more space to house an aging parent, or you must travel too far to care for an ailing family member. Either way, caring for a family member may spur a home sale.
A divorce is a stressful event that takes an emotional toll, especially when there’s disagreement over who stays in the house. Often, selling and moving on is the right choice.
Mounting debt can feel overwhelming. From credit cards to medical bills, sometimes it makes financial sense to sell a home to clear debt.
Selling the home allows you to liquidate what is likely your largest asset and take care of your more pressing financial needs.
It may make more sense to rent or purchase a less expensive home while you sort out your finances.
Shifts in the Housing Market
Are prices in your neighborhood shooting up? Now may be a good time to sell and make the most of a hot housing market.
While housing experts and economists try their best to predict changes in the market, it is not an exact science and nothing is guaranteed. For many people, it makes sense to sell their home while the market is up and cash in on the appreciation.
In a lot of areas across the country, just 3 years could be enough time to see significant price inflation from when you purchased the home.
The 5-Year Rule
As a general rule, living in a home for at least 5 years helps you avoid a major financial hit. But why does selling soon after a purchase usually result in a loss?
According to The Mortgage Report, transaction costs are a major culprit, eating up from 10 to 15 percent of your profit. First, you’ll take a hit in closing costs, usually between two and six percent of your home’s value.
Then agent fees take another six percent (or more) from your home’s sale price.
Add in the costs associated with repairing, remodeling, cleaning, staging, and getting your home ready for the market, and it’s easy to see why so many home sellers lose money.
The second big hit comes from your mortgage. In many cases, it’ll take at least 5 years before those monthly payments start making a dent in the principle. Until then, you’re simply paying interest.
Tips for Selling a House After 3 Years
You can break the 5-year rule, but you will need to expect at least some financial loss. Life is unpredictable and if you find yourself needing to selling your home after just 3 years, know that it is still possible and there are ways to reduce the possible financial losses.
If you must sell after just 3 years, it’s likely due to a major life change. In most cases, you’ll probably need and want to move quickly and get on with your life.
Selling to HomeGo allows you to do just that. Not only will you experience a fast, hassle-free sale, but you’ll also avoid the costly fees.
HomeGo makes a same-day cash offer for your home in as-is condition. You don’t have to worry about making repairs or preparing your home for the market.
Stay in the home for as long as you need with cash in hand with our flexible leaseback program. HomeGo is the hassle-free, professional way to sell your home.