Home Selling in Seattle>Question Details

Planner, Home Seller in Seattle, WA

Should we sell, rent out (using a property manager), or leave our house empty while waiting for the market to change and hoping for a sale?

Asked by Planner, Seattle, WA Thu Oct 14, 2010

We bought our house in 2007 for all cash and will likely lose $150K (a lot for us) if we sell now, given market conditions. We're moving to another (much more expensive) state permanently and can afford the property taxes, utilities, etc., on this property if we need to keep it empty while waiting. We'd like to buy something small in our new state, but we hate the prospect of losing $150K on this sale and would actually be okay with renting in our new state for 1-4 years. We're in our late 50's. The estimated $150K loss includes real estate agent/transfer fees.

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Make sure you check with home owner's insurance before you rent. Some policies require you to be owner occupied to make a claim. You want to be covered in case of an accident.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 21, 2010
Give the current foreclosure freeze and title problems the inventory levels could decrease significantly.
If this should happen, homes with no title issues, no mortgages/ title invovlement will be at a premium.
Watch the market.
Time your sale.
Income from will be a great resources and return on your investment.
Be sure to remember your insurance premiums will go up significantly during vacancy periods so keep reserve capital to cover that.
Be realistic about repairs and upkeep as a portion of your net rental income.
Just like changing your oil, do periodic upkeep of the property using your rental income reserve.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 20, 2010
I used to live in WA and own a second home there. We purchased it as an investment. We did not have a property manager because we lived there. When we moved it was the same tenants and they paid on time. Little did we know that 1 year later, two dogs and over grown plants that we would need to make a trip up there to fix the house $2,000+ later in repairs. Like you, we have equity but I like the idea of a house making us money. So we found a reputable reliable property manager and rented the house out again. She takes good care of the house. Should the market change I would consider selling it and doing a 1031 tax exchange for something in California, where we now live.

The best advice I have for you is to talk with your tax adviser. They will look at your finances and assist you through the gains, loses, etc. Also, starting in 2011 (If I remember correctly) there will be new tax consequences for transfer of property on certain gains. It is around 3.5% at transfer date. This is why I say talk with your tax adviser. How long you have lived in the house how long it has been rented and the profit all need to be taken into account.

As for renting for 1 to 4 years in your new state, if you are going to finance the home our rates have been in the 4% range, It's a good idea to get to know the lay of the land, but we can not predict the future and rates right now are very good. Consider the cost of the new home vs the cost to sell the other home, and weigh do you really think value in WA will go up greater than the savings on the house and interest rates now in your new state.
Web Reference: http://www.TerriVellios.com
2 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 17, 2010
Okay this may not make sense to you at this time but here goes......$150,000 divided by 4 years is $3,125 per month. If you paid cash this means during that time period you didn't have to make payments to a lender or pay interest. Lets say the rate was 7%, this means you would have paid $41,949 in interest alone during that time and would still owe a little over $143,000 dollars to a lender . You basically paid $3,125 a month to live in your home and not have to pay anyone back.

If you sell your home for fair market value you will still have money in your pocket at the end of the day even selling it for $150K less. Many people put ZERO or very little down on their homes and are forced to sell now for certain reasons and they virtually have NO equity at all. With home prices dropping for owners that means prices are dropping for buyers as well not to mention low interest rates. The value of homes in other states are much less than a few years ago too, so when you buy there see what it sold for in 2007 versus what you get to buy it for now and average it against your "losses" here.

I am 51 years old so I feel for your situation but being able to sell and not have to pay anyone back is a bonus in my book. Good luck .

Tim V. Johnson
Windermere RE/Puyallup, Inc.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 24, 2011
This is a very interesting question, but one that we have helped many of our clients tackle in the past. With your situation of relocating, I would recommend renting out your property utilizing a "lease option" strategy on your property. We specialize in putting together these strategies for our client. Essentially you will rent the property for a 12, 18 or 24 month term at market rents at 15-20% above market. Structuring the leasing of your property in this way ensures that you will get a high quality renter in your property (thus protecting your property) who has an interest in purchasing the home. Since you have the capital right now to manage any debt service (monthly shortfall between rent obtained and your mortgage payment) this option makes a great deal of sense. Depending on your existing equity value in the property we could also explore refinancing the property as a Rental with a 30 Year Fixed mortgage that way if you keep the property longer than the Lease Option Contract you have locked in low rates.

We would structure the deal to help you obtain an up-front option deposit that will be applied towards the purchase price if the option is exercised in the future. Because the property now becomes a rental, by working with your tax professional you can structure the property so that it is now treated as a rental property and thus gaining the ability to depreciate the property to positively impact you from a tax perspective. Structuring it in this way enables you to retain the primary residence "estate tax exemption" as long as you lived in the property two out of the last five years as your primary residence. For example, if the market has an unforeseen turnaround during the term of the lease option and you now make money at the time of your sale from your original acquisition price, as a married couple you can exempt the first $500,000.00 of the gain from capital gains tax.

The market will improve over the next 24 months so there is an extremely high probability that you would have been able to minimize your unrealized loss by holding onto the property for the next couple of years and improving your tax treatment on the property by changing it from your primary residence to a rental property. Here is the real kicker, since you would have a long term lease in place you can acquire a new property in the city where you have relocated to at a reduced price and be able to get mortgage financing because if you do obtain a mortgage on your current property to have funds for a down payment on a new primary residence, your mortgage payment can be offset by the existence of a long term lease in place on the property thus still allowing you to qualify for a new mortgage. I previously owned a mortgage company before moving to the real estate side so I have a great deal of experience in structuring these types on contracts. This way you get the best of both worlds: you get to take advantage of a depressed market on your purchase and you have a strategy in place to reduce your loss on the sale of your home.

Please feel free to email at terryj@jamesregroup.com or call at 206-300-2693 if you would like to discuss this option in greater detail. My team works in great deal in the Seattle market and we have full service property management services available for our clients including finding the lease option Buyer, tenant screening, property maintenance, rent collection, site visits and monthly reporting. I hope the above explanation helps. I look forward to being of assistance.
Web Reference: http://www.jamesregroup.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 28, 2010
Thanks again, everybody--very helpful!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 20, 2010
Comparative Economics fall into play here. The Cost of funds tied up -V- Appreciation. I think most of us feel it will be a while to see a big growth and most of us would be Ok with a 2-3% uptick every year. Because most can find a reasonable investment that will give that return without having to sell or pay services to liquidate.
With that in mind, how many years do you want to mess with that property to see any positive return with 2-3% growth in mind? I took a listing last week for a Condo and the sellers will have to pitch in 25-30k to balance the boot yet by not selling they will be paying 30k in pmts for the year and will have to continue unless the values rocket up 40%..... Yeah right!
So they get a renter with management as suggested 10% for the management and I would recommend a bit below comps for rent as you then get some nice renters to choose from, in my experience. I would make sure you get the right insurance for your property along with vacant properties are usually vandalized or robbed.- So take the Rent average minus 20% 10 for the service and 10% for the discount on rent---keeps people in there, along with better choices for renters-log-term Vs someone temporary, or stretching budget to fit.
Also take into consideration 30% vacancy as you can rent for 2 years and be vacant for 6 months looking for the right tenant. Underwriters use that vacancy as a rule of thumb when considering financial responsibility. As well as the weight on your credit for re-occurring dues, / fees taxes upkeep.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 20, 2010
If you can avoid selling for several years I would recommend renting. I don't expect prices to "rebound" ever. We will find a bottom, bounce along it for a while and then prices will start to creep higher slowly over time. There will not be a bounce like we saw in the stock market. So if you are wiating to recover the value of 2007 you will need to wait maybe 5-8 years to do so.

If you have any intention of putting the home up for sale however, having a renter in it is a liability. Rented homes are much harder to show and maintain for marketing purposes. If next summer is the timeline suggest a short term rental and then a month to month term after that. Then you can have the property empty for sale.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 15, 2010
Anni, they own the house out-right as they bought it all cash. So pretty much rent needs to cover taxes and insurance at minimum ...I'm pretty sure it can pencil out into positive cash flow .. unless they refi and take on a loan.

Planner, ... would love to hear your thoughts after all this.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 15, 2010
I agree with all the answer that leaving a property vacant for an extended period of time is the worst idea but I don't see that anyone has addressed the tax implications if you rent your property. You need to talk to your accountant or financial adviser. Either renting your property or leaving vacant and moving your primary residence to another state will convert your home to a different status and you will most likely come under capital gains rules when you sell. The current capital gains law allows a couple a $500K exclusion without paying gains and the fact that you are upside down in your investment no gain may be owed anyway but good to check with your financial people. If you intend to purchase where you are moving and their market prices and conditions are similar then if your current home increases in value so will what you are purchasing so it may be a wash. I would certainly research what prices are there now and if that state has similar or higher market conditions to our state what you will pay in the future and don't forget what higher interest rates will cost you.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 15, 2010
I think we are all in agreement that vacant is your worst option. Deferred maintenance, potential for vandalism or break-ins will further drive down the value.
Selling right now, while doing so would be at a significant loss, would resolve the issue for you and allow you to take what you can get and move forward leaving this tough period in your past. The value where you are buying will also be down, so there is the opportunity to make it up on the other end.
Renting would allow you to cover your costs and hopefully recover some of the losses IF you have good tenants, affordable and competent management and few if any surprises.
The answer as to what you should do depends on factors I don't have access to. What is your tolerance for risk? How long are you willing to wait for the market to return? How comfortable are you renting a home both a tenant & landlord? What is the market like where you are going?
How you answer these questions and a few others will help you decide which of the two real options you are most comfortable with. I wish you the best. If you need help working through these questions or need others to consider, don't hesitate to call or write. I enjoy troubleshooting.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 14, 2010
As the others have recommended, I'd highly recommend renting it out. There are always some things to be concerned when renting but the risks outweigh the even bigger risks of leaving the house vacant.
Renting it out generates some income stream. Since you have this house paid off, it'll be a monthly revenue source. Sitting vacant of course generates nothing.

The common fear I get from a my clients who are going to rent their house out is how much damage the house will sustain with a renter. Nobody can really predict but of the properties I manage, the tenants that we place have taken care of the properties quite well. I believe in doing by example. This is both the property owner and the property manager showing they care about their property and by doing so, the tenants will show the property the same care we do. If the owner and manager don't care about the property, the tenants will likely take on the same attitude. This includes also being prompt and proactive in property maintenance and keeping a good line of communication open. With the right tenants, the risk of damage is minimized. You should, however, always prepare a budget to do some wear and tear repairs after the tenants leave.

A vacant house as others have mentioned already runs not just break in or squatters breaking in but just the fact that a house deteriorates without activity in it. Case in point...if you've seen any of the homes that are in foreclosure that have been vacant a while. Mold is a common problem, pests, insects and just things break when put back into use after long periods of non-use. Those repairs usually will cost more in the long run than potential damages a tenant may cause.

Another complaint I hear a lot is the cost of property managers, ... costs can vary from company to company. We have a couple plans for individual homeowners available. Msg me and I can give you details as well as other firms for you to compare.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 14, 2010
I would rent the property out and pay a reputable property management company to handle it for you. Leaving the house vacant can lead to other problems, but having a renter could eliminate many of those potential problems. Using a property manager minimizes the hassle on your end, and if things go well you might decide to rent it out longer than you originally expected to.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 14, 2010
This is an interesting scenario and I have read some good answers. I would like to hear what you did. Try to find a family member or friend to rent it is what I would try to do, and have a property manager take care of the rest. You should be able to get a tax write off on your vacations to Seattle when checking on the property.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 8, 2011
Rent out your present home until the market returns...and it will return. You'll probably be on the winning end with your purchase. It is a buyer's market everywhere you look. Get a warranty which will cover most repairs in a home and hire someone to collect the rent and keep a small percentage to either visit the home every 6 months or make adjustments to keep your tenants happy.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Mar 8, 2011
Leaving a home empty presents all kinds of issues. The home could be vandalized, when there is no activity in the home seals start to dry out possibly creating water leaks. The best option would definitely be to lease the home out. That way you at least have some cash flow coming out of the home while you await the potential market rebound.
Web Reference: http://dmdrealtydfw.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Mar 8, 2011
Having rented a few of my homes in the past, I can say rent! Find a property manager that has great reviews so you don't have to stress over rent collections, repairs and maintenance questions.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Mar 1, 2011
I have rented properties for over 30 years. Tenants over the last two years are always late or worse they leave the property a disaster. Sell now, rent where you are going, he market is still on shakey ground. We have never been in this market. Property could continue to fail without jobs. New home sales today showed a 12.8% drop that leaves more inventory for absorption. Out of state doubles the problem.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 24, 2011
Rental can be a two edged sword, if all goes well the tenant will pay on time, and respect your property but as someone who has managed hundreds of properties at one time, I can assure you if you rent long enough you're going to have a bad experience. The problem is no one can say when that will occur, it could be you first tenant or you could rent for 5 years without a problem. When it is bad it can bring tears to your eyes. There isn't a single state in the country that is landlord friendly, and some states are worse than others. (I don't have specific experience with Washington state so I can' say) but some tenants will do damage to your property, not pay rent and force you to evict them etc. IF you do decide to rent speak with your insurance agent, you'll need to modify your policy.

Long distance owning of rental property is in my experience and opinion an inherently risky proposition and fraught with potential problems and should be considered carefully before committing.

Allowing it to sit empty whether you can afford it or not simply add to your losses and my guess is it adds at the rate of $10,000 - $25,000 a year or even more once you factor in mortgage, taxes, insurance and utilities. Also your insurance company is likely to drop you as they don't like uninhabited homes, if they don't drop you they will certainly raise your rate.

I have no idea how long it may take for the Seattle market to rebound, do you? What if it takes 5 years? How about 10? Do yourselves a favor and sell now. Take the loss, write it off against your taxes (check with your accountant on the best way to do this) and forget about it. Life will go on and I promise you'll be much happier a year or two from now than if you still own the property and there's no end in sight.

Sorry you are in the position you are and I wish you well whatever your decision may be.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 8, 2011
Great answers below! I am of the opinion judging by your question that renting is the logical choice!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 8, 2011
Why lose money if you can afford to wait until the market rebounds? I agree with the advice that you find a good long-term tenant. This shouldn't be difficult. The rental market in the Puget Sound area has been heating up because it's become much more difficult to qualify for a mortgage, and more people are looking for rental homes.

If you're moving out of state, I highly recommend retaining the services of a professional property manager. Ask a realtor in your area for recommendations. A property manager is well worth the peace of mind. They can help you find and screen potential tenants, negotiate the lease, handle the bookkeeping, take care of property maintenance and watch over your investment.

Best of luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 7, 2011
If you sell right now and take your loss, you will likely buy in the new state at a reduced rate as well. If you can afford to keep your old home and buy a new one in the new state while prices are down, that might be ideal. If you need to wait until your old home sells, the cost of your new home might be higher. Your home should not be left vacant under any circumstances. If you decide to rent out your house, consider the age and condition of your home. Will you need major repairs or maintenance in the next 3-4 years? Will your rent that you receive be able to cover your expenses as well as help you get into a home in the new state? Be sure to get a reputable management company to look after your home, and carefully screen your renters. Consider getting a home protection plan. Last, check with your accountant to see if renting will provide you with additional tax write offs. Good luck with your new adventure!
Web Reference: http://www.joanoxman.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 27, 2010
I have rental properties, so I'm going to side with that option. If you rent out your home you'll have money put back into it. If you are worried about damages be sure to take a deposit, run a credit check, etc. Having renters also ensures that the property is "looked after" while you're away. That would be my best suggestion for waiting it out. Good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Oct 25, 2010
At some point the real estate market will bounce back. I would rent the house out, leaving a house empty is never a good idea, no matter what part of the country you live in. List the rental property with a realtor who performs credit checks, ask for references from former landlords, ask for security deposit and before you sign a lease meet with the perspective tenants. Remember not all tenants are bad! Good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 22, 2010
If you rent it out, be sure you're the one that screens the tenant. I've seen too many vacant homes destroyed. and I've seen many rentals destroyed.. but lesser likelihood if you choose a good tenant with good references. by the way, never trust the references. Go and visit the prospective tenant where they now live.. unannounced.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 22, 2010
A house is a living breathing thing. It should never be left empty. Bad things happen in empty houses. It could get overrun with insects, you could have a plumbing leak go un-detected for months.

If you are thinking about renting it out you have the ability to ask for a large deposit for any disasters.

If you have equity in your home, in today's market you might want to cash out even at a loss. Interest rates are so low right now that your payments for a better house in a nicer area might be the same or less then your old payments. Remember you will also be buying in a market that has been depressed for some time. There are truly great properties out there to be had.

If you have been used to owning your own home, you might find renting not very enjoyable.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 22, 2010
Everyone is in the same boat as you are when selling their home after buying in the high market. You should be talking with your financial person to see if there are any benefits you can use. You also need to talk with professional property management companies to see if renting your home would be benefical. Leaving your home empty can bring headaches down the road for you, so find out all the information you can to make a justified decision.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 22, 2010
You should hire a professional Real Estate company that sells and manages properties. They can screen propective renters and check on the property on a regular basis. If you decide to leave the property vacant hire a professional stager.. A lot of Realtors today service their listings especially if the house is vacant. Realtors know the better a house looks the faster it will be looked at .At the present time itt is common knowlege that there is a lot of inventory available. Keep in mind most builders stage their models for a reason.. Some of these investments could be less than your price reduction.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 22, 2010
Have you conferred to CPA if you take a $150K loss any tax benefits to you.

If you lease you have additional write off 's speak with CPA

Leasing it will offset some of loss additional income for you.

Allow a home sit vacant can destroy a home, like a car parts need keep working.

Property Mgr's are great it depends if they are in business to do this. Most will take approx. 10% of rental income ot manager property.

You might be able to locate a family interested in lease purchase

Lynn911 Dallas Realtor & Consultant, Loan Officer, Credit Repair Advisor
The Michael Group - Dallas Business Journal Top Ranked Realtors
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 21, 2010
I agree. You should rent the home out and you should hire a property management company. You can sell the home when the market goes back up. Good luck on your move and take care!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 21, 2010
Rent out your home through a property management company. There are advantages to this. It is not a good idea to leave your home vacant for many reasons. Your insurance could be cancelled and or someone could take up residency in your absence; or someone could suffer a "slip and fall" or whatever!!! There are write-offs for rental properties. You have a year to sell upon relocating before it would be considered a tax liability.

Jo Stovall/ Realtor Sacramento California
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 20, 2010
Nothing good happens to property left vacant.... I would recommend finding a good tennant .. you could even request a 2 year lease... we are finding many great tennants that want that or longer of a lease. A management company would b e okay, but you could probably do this yourself if you list the lease with an agent .. they find a good tennant .. you could provide the lawncare so to ensure that would be fine ... values should slowly increase and you could put it on the market later.

If you do not want to do that , I would sell it now... any options other than leaving it vacant . you would end up with all kinds of headaches with that option.

I would be happy to find a great person to lease your home for you .... let me know what you decide !

Karen Skinner 949-606-4845 Keller Williams
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 20, 2010
This is a challenging question as the answer depends on different factors..how much rent would you receive..what do property mangers get in your area...is your home upgraded..what year was your home built...can you get 1st month, last month ,security, cleaning deposit, key security etc. The more $$$ you have of theirs the less likely chance of damage.

I do not know the Seattle market...however taking all the foreclosures..the economy ...how long do you want to hold on to this house. For the housing market to recover it could take anywhere from 5 to 10 years in a lot of areas. Check with a Realtor in your area and ask for statistics on what % the homes have dropped and then figure if the prices do not go down anymore.Then at a rate of 6 to 7% a year increase how long will it take before you get back your $150k and add on your closing costs.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 20, 2010
Depends on your house- some homes make a nice rental and are not suseptable to tenant damage. Some homes are very very nice and can easily be damage. Don't expect to get back your $150 k for 7-8 years.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 20, 2010
Never leave a house 'empty'. Too many risks. Time to sell is not now. So, hire a really good (you must decide) property manager as close by as possible. Rent your home o a 'screened' renter. Good management requires a check on their credit and history. Is there some 'risk', yes but allof life is a risk. We can only rely on these experts to keep us out of un-necessary amounts of risk. Ron Foote, real estate professional for over 25 years in Kingman AZ.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 20, 2010
To let a house sit is not a good Idea. First you would not let your money sit without some return. Renting would give you a return on your money while you are waiting for the market to turn. Then there also is the tax write off with the income. The income should atleast pay your taxes. This market may not turn for several years depending on what happens in elections and foreclosures. I absolutely would consider renting it if you have not intensions of selling. Good luck in your new adventures.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 20, 2010
When you rent this,
you can lock in a price on a new home if you Lease/Option in your new state.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 20, 2010
In my opinion it is never a good investment to rent a single family home, especially short term. List it with a Realtor and stage the home for sale. Also look at comps and your price and market conditions in your area. Good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 20, 2010

I would suggest you get with a qualified Realtor® and have them run some projected rental returns so you can have all the facts. Knowing how much revenue you can generate will help you answer the question. I am not familiar with your local market conditions but here in southern Florida we are most probably at least 3 to 5 years before we unload the foreclosures which really is going to be the first step to seeing any significant price appreciation. It truly is supply and demand and I see a few years before that scale is more in balance.

You may be better off cutting bait but look into the projected revenue stream before making your decision. I hope that this is helpful but if I can provide anything additional please feel free to contact me at your convenience.

Always at Your Service,

Tom Priester e-PRO
"Results Driven Real Estate"

Kelle Williams Realty
561 308-0175
Web Reference: http://www.tompriester.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Oct 20, 2010
No property benefits by being vacant and you're in a great situation. You don't have to sell and have no mortgage payment, so put that puppy to work. You'll find your homeowner's insurance will likely not insure you if it's vacant. Don't try to maintain this property yourself. You'll get tired of dealing with the details from a distance and you'll likely give up and sell it for too little and suffer additional tax liabilities. Get a professional, real estate property management company. They do this every day and typically their fees are far less than I'd every exchange and do it myself. Let them deal with getting qualified renters, maintaining the property and send you a check each month. Make sure they do credit and background checks along with referrals so you can be assured of having someone in your property who can make the payments regularly and on time and will take care of your property. If rented, your property is occupied, maintained and is working FOR you. Talk with an accountant who works with investors who own rental property. This person can give you a better point of view of the landlord hat. There are many tax advantages to owning a rental property. Your accountant will give you all the benefits of owning rental property. You may decide you like having rental property. Then when the market returns, you'll be able to recoup your investment if you decide to sell, but in the meantme, it's paying you to do what you need to do, live elsewhere. When you meet with your accountant, ask about selling the property later and have them explain the 1031 exchange so you can prepare upfront for the inevitable sale of the property and come out ahead. Good luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Oct 19, 2010
Rent It!!! Don't be afraid just take all the necessary precautions to find a good reliable tenant. I have helped a few of my listing clients find long term tenants recently, I had to coax them a bit but they were not wanting to give away their home at current market rates and I felt if they needed to move, it was in their best interest to at least explore possible lease options. Anyway long story short, they got a 3 year lease agreement and we are under contract on their new home purchase. So far everyone is extremely happy and I don't foresee any issues. I suggest finding a good agent who can help you w/ property mgmt if you need it (if you are moving out state I guess you likely will) or at least help find a good qualified hopefully longer term tenant until the market recovers.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Oct 18, 2010
I'm not trying to be argumentative, but I do NOT think marketing a property it at more than it's worth (or what the seller "wants") is a good idea, given current market conditions. There are lots of cancelled and expired listings that seem to back this up.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 17, 2010
If you decide to leave the home vacant and/or rent out the home, be sure to check your home owners insurance policy. Typically your homeowners policy only covers you as an owner occupant.

Skip Benton
Reno, NV
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 17, 2010
I agree pretty much with everybody here that you should just rent it out, & I would plan on doing that long term as well. You have enough other info here, so there is no reason to repeat it all. You should for sue buy when you move since the prices and interest rates are low now.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 15, 2010
Thanks, everybody, for all your advice. Since we won't actually be moving until next summer, we'll probably wait a few months to see whether the market picks up. If it doesn't, then we'll look into the tax issues connected with turning the property into a rental. Thanks again!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 15, 2010
We have transferred many times throughout the years and have taken a financial hit with many of the moves. It is difficult to recoup that loss. The advice you have received here is sound. Do not leave the house empty. Talk to your tax accountant and a Real Estate Professional who is experienced in investment property (Certified Investment Analyst) and have them run the numbers for you. You might find that your tax incentives offset any monthly negative you might have on the property. It may make sense for you to refinance and take some equity out of this house to purchase your next one. Only by running the numbers can you make a sound decision. Good Luck.
Web Reference: http://www.annizilz.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Oct 15, 2010
Renting is probably a good option, however be very careful who you rent to.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 14, 2010
My first response is to rent it out and wait for the market to return to reduce the loss you would take now. I would also advise talking to your accountant regarding the possible tax implications of selling now vs renting. There is a certain amount of headache with rentals even with a property manager to take into consideration. Leaving it empty would be an absolute no in my opinion.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 14, 2010
Hang onto it, rent it out so your asset pays out later when you need it
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 14, 2010
Given the market conditions....you may be waiting for 5+ years for the market to come around, if you're ok with waiting this long your best option, is probably to lease it out for the next few years.
Hopefully your the rental income you receive will cover the property taxes and expenses.

Best Of Luck,
Verna Helbling
Prudential Beverly Hills
310 849 2485
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 14, 2010
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