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How to Sell a House While Buying a House

Real Estate

It an be stressful enough to sell a house in general, but the stress is compounded if you are also buying a home at the same time. Conducting simultaneously real estate transactions can be tricky, as there are many different factors you need to consider. After all, yo don't want to end up forced to pay two mortgages for long periods of time, nor do you want to end up selling your house before you've found a new place to live and having nowhere to go.

How to Sell a House While Buying a House

When you put your home on the market, you should immediately begin looking both or a house to buy and for a temporary place to live in case the timing does not line up properly. Having a month-to-month apartment rental in mind, or arrangements with a family member to stay in their home for a brief period, can take some of the stress off when you are trying to sell a house and buy a new one at the same time. At least if you line up housing in advance, you won't be scrambling if the situation arises when the new owners want to move in and your new house isn't ready yet.

If you get a buyer on your house, you may want to try to make the sales contract contingent upon you finding a house. You might have to lower the price or make other concessions in order to get the buyer to agree to such terms. Alternatively, you could try to negotiate the contract to have a flexible closing date or a closing date far enough away that you will be able to find a new home by that time.

Alternatively, if you do need to set the closing date for before you have found a new house, or if your new house won't close until after the old house is sold, you can ask the new owners of your house if they'd be willing to rent it back to you for a few weeks until you can complete your move.

If you find a house you like before you sell your house, on the other hand, you may want to make your offer contingent on selling your home. Again, whether or not the sellers will agree depends on your situation. In a buyers market they are more likely to OK such a contingent clause, while in a seller's market they may tell you to forget it. You don't want to end up with two mortgages though, whatever you do, so before you agree to buy a house, make sure you have a plan for what will happen if your existing house doesn't sell.

If you need the proceeds from the sale of your existing house as a down payment on the new house, you may want to consider either a bridge loan or a home equity line of credit. A home equity line of credit allows you to tap into the equity of your existing house, raising the amount you owe on it. You can pay it back when you sell the existing house. Alternatively, a bridge loan is a short term loan. You can pay it back when you sell your home. These types of loans were made for people who want to sell a house and buy at the same time, since it allows you more flexibility in the financial transactions that must occur.

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