2017 is reminding me more of 2007 every day.
The Austin market, fueled by speculation and FOMO is running hot. Buyers flush with adrenaline and with agents in their ears eager to keep the train rolling. They’re letting emotions intervene in the most important financial decision of their lives with many to making regrettable decisions. In fact up to 80% of new homeowners have major regrets about buying a home. Other surveys are in the sources below.
These regrets range from the lack of size (or excess size) to wishing they had worked with a different real estate agent. Although genuine issues, these are superficial problems. There are, however, powerful issues that can plague new homeowners after a purchase including a lack of understanding of the costs of home ownership and borrowing too much against their home. These two regrets place financial stress on homeowners which can be manifested in all areas of their lives.
According to the Huffington Post lack of understanding ownership costs accounts for 12% of homeowner regrets. Same for over leveraging. So if you’re one of the millions who regret a home purchase for legitimate financial reasons and you’re thinking, “I need to sell my house fast in Austin”, then you’re at the right place.
It’s not worth the daily anxiety and stress that accompany financial hardship. Psychology Today reports, “likelihood of having a mental health problem is three times higher among people who have debt.” And the link between debt and suicide is even stronger.
Research has proven the physiological effects of stress. The most effective treatment is to remove the precursor if possible. Although temporarily painful, alleviating the stress will have a healing effect. Ever bought a shirt at Macy’s and wish you hadn’t? Then debate returning it which you ultimately do a week later. The feeling is exhilarating! Yep, I’ll take my $70 back. Selling your house fast could be the best way to relieve financial stress before it erodes more than your bank account.
Selling Fast – Your Options
Selling your house fast means finding a cash buyer. Why a cash buyer?
The vast majority of home sales in the US are made possible by borrowed money. However, lenders typically require a 30-90 day process where they review both the borrower and the property. And the completion of the process is not certain. The borrower’s credit, cash available, and employment status are reviewed and are hurdles to a sale.
So when you’re selling a house through a real estate agent to an end buyer be prepared if the buyers financing falls through. And this happens at a surprising rate. The failure rate has increased dramatically, nearly doubling from 2015 to 2016. Another sign that prices are unrealistic and thus increasing the prospect of a regrettable purchase.
And if the sale falls through you’ll have to start the sale process all over again… adding months to the process and adding more pressure and stress.
To avoid having the buyer pull out at the last second because of financing… one option is to sell your house to local home buyers.
But how do you get cash offers fast?
This is the wrong question…And here’s why.
Keep in mind that anyone can write a cash offer, even if they’re borrowing money to purchase the property. If you throw a rock in Austin you’ll hit a “cash buyer”. Due to the popularity of house flipping shows there are more people than ever in the market to buy homes for cash. Thanks Chip and Jo.
The unfortunate side effect is a surplus of inexperienced “investors” who will only waste your time. They’re fresh out of the latest seminar and they’ve been told they’ll be flipping houses and swimming in money in no time. In reality they’re going to waste your time by making empty promises. Trust me, I’ve been to several networking events where the following advice was given, “just get it under contract.” Yep, you guessed it. That means they’ll make you an offer you can’t believe or refuse and now you think all your problems are solved. Lucky you!
But everything that seems too good to be true is just that. They are only buying time… your time… to negotiate the price down. Meanwhile you, the homeowner, are hung out to dry and under contract with someone who’s on the phone with some guru in Utah trying to figure out what their next move is to gain power in the negotiation. Although a lot of seminars are based in Utah, this is obviously an arbitrary shot at Utah.
The worst part of the whole situation is that the person who made the slam dunk cash offer has no money at all. Certainly not enough for your house. Remember they gave their savings to that guru in Utah.
(stepping off my soapbox)
Good news: There are reputable home buyers. And here’s a couple ways to determine if you’re dealing with someone who can complete a transaction. Quickly.
- Ask about the last 3 homes they bought and when they bought them. Buying homes is a complicated process and most offering “cash” have never actually bought a house besides their own. Also stay away from national companies with “buyer networks”.
- Ask about their exit strategy. They should know based on the price they offered if they’re going to keep it, renovate and sell retail or just connect you to a cash buyer. If they don’t have a clear answer then they aren’t the buyer for you. I’ve flipped homes and I’ve sold them to other cash buyers. But I always disclose what I’m going to do with the home owner to make sure they’re on board with it.
- Ask them what local title company they use and how long they’ve been using them. They MUST be local. Also, ask who the closing attorney is.