You should know that your situation is not unusual. You have some excellent posts in response
1. Does your husband's new company have a relocation dept? Part of the negotiation of a new employee's compensation usually involves relocating the employee to their new job site. Even if the company does not have a formal policy, after analyzing your situation your husband should let them know how much this move is going to cost his family.
2. I suggest interviewing two or three Realtors and discussing your options. Ask them for an Estimate of Seller's Net Proceeds. in some companies, if they have a relocation department, they actually advise you to use a Realtor and may even assist with moving expenses.
3. Once you know the potential loss I would opt for discussing the tax consequences with a CPA. In cases like yours the answers may not be crystal clear. My wife and I went through a situation like this. We had purchased a home, the market shifted, and after examining our options decided to keep it as a rental. We became accidental real estate investors, and initally it was very stressful. In the long term (18 years) it was a great investment.
The most important thing is to gather all the facts, which should include discussing long term and short term effects on your family's finances. Most employers want to help their employees feel a part of the team, so I would urge your husband to see what they might be able to do to help him.
I have recently seen a couple of situations where employers share the burden when they relocate employees in order to expedite the home sale. Depending on your husband's situation, he may want to discuss the situation and find out if the employer is willing to cover or split any costs related to the sale of your home that exceed the sales price. It may or may not be appropriate in your situation; however, I thought I'd throw it out there because it surprised me when it was done in two recent transactions.
The facts are the facts in our real world. There is no such thing as a free ride - once your parents get you out on your own. I too had to face reality every time I sold a stock that went down in price from what I paid for it or even if it stayed at the exact same price. The selling costs were still there and I had to pay them if I indeed elected to move on. I guess the same holds true for you now that you are indeed interested in selling your home. You still need to pay your lender back the money you borrowed and you still need to pay the title insurance company their insurance fee, their closing fee and all the other misc. fees if you want to sell your property. So, if you want to use the services of a professional Realtor to represent you and to market your home, you will need to pay that fee too.
Your other choice might be to take on the role of a professional Realtor and try and sell your home yourself. After being in the business for the past 30 years and representing over 1,800 clients through the process, including negotiating that many contracts for my clients, my guess is a seasoned professional will do a better job and net you far more than you will be able to on your own. But, selling by owner is always an option.
The other option might be to just bite the bullet and realize the market has gone down and just like when you sell a stock for less than what you bought it for, you will jus need to come out of the transaction with less than you hoped for. You may have to tap into other assets to complete the sale and be able to move on with your lives in your new location.
The last option would be to trash your credit and just give the home back the lender. Thousands of other home owners across the nation have done just that in the past couple of years. I sure hope you have other assets available to you so you do not have to go down that road.
If you would like to explore the option of using a broker, I would suggest you interview at least three. Be sure to ask them to leave with you a detailed outline of exactly what they will do for you to market your home. Be sure to also ask them how many homes they have sold. (The more the better for you). What professional designations they have. How many years they have been a full time Realtor and of course, what brokerage fee they would charge to sell your home.
I hope this helps you. And, unfortunately, there just are no easy answers for your situation.
Bill Kosena, ABR, CRS, GRI, SRES
One option you may have would be to try leasing out your property. If you would like to discuss possible management of your home please let me know. We have competitive management rates. I hope to hear from you soon!
I dont reccomend FSBO especially if you are in a time crunch, perhaps it would be a good ideah for you to interview a few agents, explain your situation in greater detail with them and allow them the opportunity to come up with a plan.
Look for an agent that intends on counseling you on your home, they may be more helpfull than you think, and who knows your home may be worth more than your thought...
We prefer to sell the home conventionally and we have a child who will be starting school in early August, so we would LOVE to close by the end of July. If anyone out there has a qualified buyer who might be interested, here are the basic stats: It's a split-level built in 1965 with 1868 sq feet, 3-4 bedrooms, 1 full bath, a 3/4 bath and a powder room, eat in kitchen, LR, DR w/ french doors, and office/playroom. Wood floors, tile floors in entry and in the eat-in kitchen. The lot is appx 8000 sq ft. The asking price is $205,000, assuming there will be negotiations. In Oct 2007, the home appraised for $210,000. Northglenn is a nice, well-established community, and has the benefit of being one of the closer commutes to Denver, but also with quiet suburban streets. We are in Adams 12 school district. I'll be glad to provide more information if desired. Thank you for all your objective advice and best wishes.....this is a great resource!
Why don't you call a couple of agents and ask for a market analysis on your home. If you can manage to break even after your costs, consider it a good thing and don't forget you lived in the house, so you did get value out of it. Things aren't selling instantly, but there are more people out there looking this month than earlier in the spring.
Even though I am a Realtor, I got caught in the same situation when we left the Sacramento California area a while ago. Three military bases closed at once (virtually) and we had to leave for Colorado. We received a whopping $58 at closing. It didn't help us buy a house here, but at least we lived in for a while.
Talk to a few agents and get a better idea of the market value, then make a more informed decision.
Good luck to you!
However, if by chance your house falls into the following requirements, let me know because I have a pre apporved buyer looking to close in July.
The house has to be at least 1600sqft with a basement. 3 to 4 bedroom, Have a 5pc bath, does not back to a busy street or powerlines, Priced no higher than $240,000, and rather new. about 3 or 4 years old. If it fits at least these characteristics, then it is worthwhile for us to talk further. Feel free to email me at my website or call. All contact information is on the site.
Wishing you the best,
It depends what your local market is like.
If it's a down market you may consider hiring
a property management company and renting it
out; many Realtors specialize in that service.
If it's a seller's market you can consider
selling it yourself if you have the time.
Best of Luck !