First contact a Realtor in Jacksonville to give you a realistic sale price and ask him/her to give you a breakdown of all the costs involved, transfer taxes, etc. Looking at sold properties online won't give you the full picture. Then you'll know how much you need to bring to the table to close the sale.
Then contact a mortgage lender who can walk you through each of your options on the MD house - here's a good one in MD http://www.apexhomeloans.com/allentayman
Home Equity Line - usually a variable rate, pretty low rates right now, but if you're going to keep it for a while the variations should be considered. If you're going to pay it off quickly, then not such a big deal.
Cash out refinance - if this lowers your rate significantly for the entire mortgage, or keeps it close, this is a viable option. If it raises your rate on your primary residence or pushes you into needing Premium Mortgage Insurance (PMI) probably not your best option, but worth looking at.
Second mortgage - my understanding is that stand alone fixed 2nd mortgages are hard to come by these days, but there may be a good option if it's available to you.
It's a pain to be a landlord, but talk to the FL realtor about trends and how values are increasing. If values are increasing, then you may want to also consider holding onto the rental for another 5+ years, then sell or hold onto it indefinitely as an investment.
You have a lot of factors to consider, make sure you work with people who are willing to walk you through all your options and all the details.
The market in Southern Maryland has improved quite a bit in the last 30-60 days. Now that that the winter weather is behind us and interest rates are still very attractive, the market seems active. We should have a good spring and summer season with prices firming up.... more
For the family that has outgrown it's current abode - & is in dire need of a larger space - Most definitely. You will be able to take advantage of your current equity to step into a much better home at a great price point.
You may give up a little on the percentage when selling - but what you gain will come back at you once the market recovers... (I don't have a crystal ball for when that will happen - but it's not too far in the future).
To answer your direct question "will it ever"? Yes. It always does. We have cycles just like any other industry. There was a time when the wireless companies went from $40 per share to under $4: they have rebounded and are stronger than ever.
The housing market must right itself - and pay for the sins of the past. Once we get back to reality and the market catches up with itself we will all benefit. I wouldn't look for the 10% annual appreciation - I do believe those days are done (hopefully).
Remember the tortoise and the hare? Slow and steady gets you there....... more