Tom Giuntini, Both Buyer and Seller in Hoboken, NJ

Planning to sell 1bd Hoboken condo and buying a house in Morris/Essex this year - what is the best way to facilitate this move and what is timing like

Asked by Tom Giuntini, Hoboken, NJ Sun Jan 30, 2011

I am somewhat flexible and am not relying on Hoboken sale to purchase the home in Essex/Morris county, but it would certainly be helpful. I am willing to take a small loss on my Hoboken sale if I can see a large upside on the house purchase (looking btwn 700k-950k for home). Should I use several agents for my home purchase and one for the sale? I'm not really sure where to start or how long the entire process will take, so any advice would be much appreciated. I am not under any time constraints either, I'm just ready to move to a home and start a family. With rates and home prices where they are this seems like a good time to try and take advantage of the market and upgrade to the family home.

Help the community by answering this question:

+ web reference
Web reference:


Deborah Warn…, Agent, Woodcliff Lake, NJ
Sat Apr 27, 2013
This is a question that so many people wrestle with. The ideal situation is to sell your home first and move in with a relative while you find and close on your new home. If this doesn't work for you then you hire a good agent in Hoboken to sell your house. Let this agent recommend an agent to you who can find you a house or maybe this agent covers all of the areas you want. I would hope that the first agent can coordinate everything for you. At Keller Williams we can do that with excellent results. You don't want to work with too many agents, it just gets confusing for you and frustrating for the agents. Good luck.
0 votes
Debra (Debbi…, Agent, Livingston, NJ
Mon Oct 15, 2012
Excellent "advice" Jose, except you didn't even try to answer the question.............and, in case you didn't notice - this quesiton was asked over a year and a half ago......doubt the biuyer is still looking for help.
0 votes
Jeffrey Halp…, Agent, Hopatcong, NJ
Fri May 20, 2011
Dear Tom:
Best of luck. If you are not under any time constraints, I would suggest that you start by using the auto-email system that automatically sends you the newest listing thru the Multiple Listing Service on a daily basis. This allows you to view the first ones out there without getting calls from the Realtor. And when you see the homes you are interested in, you can call the agent yourself when you are ready. I can set you up on the same. Just let me know.
0 votes
Anne Shearman, Agent, Madison, NJ
Thu May 19, 2011
Have you purchased? Let's get started ! if you haven't .
0 votes
Anne Shearman, Agent, Madison, NJ
Tue Mar 1, 2011
HI Tom
Congratulations on timing the market well! It is a greta time to be buying ! And a good agent can prepare your home to sell quickly thru great staging and pricing!

I would recommend that you hire 3 agents , one for each area , Hoboken, Essex and Morris. List your home and begin your search on OPEN HOUSE Sundays. Of course, online is a good start but you must walk, touch and sense your new area in person. This is the fun part!

I have a great tool on my website that will get you started with home pricing and sales in NJ / it is a sales and activity report for the area and pricing of your choice. The Market Snapshot can be requested by clicking the link

Also here is a great primer on Home Buying in NJ

Good luck in your search.!
0 votes
Matthew De F…, Agent, Nutley, NJ
Sat Feb 19, 2011
First off, I would interview a couple of agents and then stick with one.
0 votes
Chad Barris, Mortgage Broker Or Lender, Parsippany, NJ
Wed Feb 2, 2011
Hi Tom, If you need any advice or have any questions regarding a mortgage for your new home I would be happy to answer any questions you may have.

Chad Barris
Cell: (917) 439-7336
0 votes
Diane Glander, Agent, Spring Lake, NJ
Wed Feb 2, 2011
I highly recommend that you sell Hoboken first and then start looking for your new home. Even if you are comfortable financially owning both, you never know what life will throw your way.
The price you get for your Hoboken home and whether or not you take a loss will depend on the current market value. I suggest you get a good local Realtor to help you price your home there. Interview a few agents, find one that is knowledgable and one you get along with since you will be working closely with this person until the property closes.
You can start looking immediately and should find one agent to help you locally in each county. You might be able to find one to help you in both counties, if the towns are close enough together. But, it is really important to have a local agent who intimately knows the market in the towns you are interested in.
You can make the sale of your Hoboken home contingent upon your finding a new home, but with all the inventory on the market, you shouldn't have a problem finding something. And, it throws a gliche into the selling process when agents see that contingency. They are less likely to show your home.
So, since you are in no hurry, I suggest you list your Hoboken property and start going out to see what your $$ will buy you in the towns you are interested in. Then, when an offer comes in, you canget serious about purchasing something new.
All the best! Enjoy the process.
Web Reference:
0 votes
Debra (Debbi…, Agent, Livingston, NJ
Tue Feb 1, 2011
Tom - scroll down and take advantage of Robin Silverberg's mortgage advice - speak to someone (why not call her!) and firm up the financial aspect of the transaction - that really is crucial in helping to put the parts of this home buying/selling puzzle together.

0 votes
Debra (Debbi…, Agent, Livingston, NJ
Tue Feb 1, 2011
Hi Tom!

You are in an enviable postion. You can buy without the presssure of having to sell first. That's great !
This makes the process easier in that you have the luxury of looking at what is on the market, and if lucky enough to find something , you can proceed with an offer, even if your condo isn't sold.

On average, the process could take anywhere from 6 months to a should, and can, take your time..........these are big decisions to make!

I just worked with buyers who were in the same fortunate position. They listed their condo, and wound up buying first Roseland, in Essex Count.y...., they ultimately decided to rent their Hoboken condo, rather than sell it,

Here is what I suggest.

Call an agent in Hudson County - you need a local agent to handle your listingthere, for sure..
Get a realistic idea of what your condo is worth. You also need a realistic idea of what the average days on market fast are condos turning over. Select an agent you feel comfortable with, who comes recommended and is brutally honest with you. This isn't the kind of market where information should be sugar coated.

Once you have that information, you can decide when the timing is right to put that condo on the market. If the length of days on market is a high , you might want to list the condo right away.

In the meantime, and...... at the same time......start your home search.

You need to try and filter through, and narrow down, the many town options, and start with a few towns in each county.
On a practical level, one agent is all you need, and it will benifit you to develop a strong relationshp with that agent. who will come to learn what you do and do't want. They will help you organize this whole process.

So - what should you do?
Interview a few agents - see who you feel comfortable with. Ask to be taken on an area tour of the various towns.

In your price range, In Essex County, depending on your style preferences, you might want to consider: Livingston, Roseland , N Caldwell, Essex Fells, Maplewood and Millburn - Short Hills will be too limited under 1 million. Much will depend on what you want as far as style , location and upgrades go.
Do you want a home that has been updated already, or one you can redo with your own taste?.
Do you prefer a contemporary home, or a more traditional one?

Depending on how far into Morris County you want to should be fine using the same agent. If you really want to go far west, then, I would refer a buyer out to an agent who has their finger on the pulse of those more westerly towns,

The Morris County towns closer to Essex, that I cover, would include: Florham Park, Whippany , Cedar Knolls (both are Hanover Township), Madison, Chatham - all with excellent school systems.......going slightly further out brings you to Randolph..or, you might consider Montville.

Where will you be commuting to for work? What other specific requirements do you have? Do you want a huge lot, or will .5 acre be sufficient?
The answers to these questions will help whittle down the options.

This is all a lot to digest!

Just take a deep breath - start looking into selecting an agent for Hudson County, and one for the Essex/Morris County area.............make a few appointments to sit down ,have a conversation, and come up with a plan.

Everything will fall into place!!

Please check out my website, and you might find some useful links to the various towns I mentioned

Good luck with whatever you decide Tom. This is an exciting time for you.

It would be my pleasure to help you ! I have been an agent for 26 years, and am a lifelong resident of this area, so I know it well!

Best wishes.,,,,and welcome (almost!) to the area!

Prudential NJ Properties
email: Debbie.Rose@Prudential
0 votes
David Paris, Agent, Hoboken, NJ
Tue Feb 1, 2011

Having done basically what you are doing and after reading the comments by the other Realtors, I would suggest you focus on your new home first. Your 1BR condo in Hoboken will sell and you should pick a local Hoboken agent to help you sell it. That is the easy part.

Buying your home and deciding which town to move to is much more important, since this is going to be where you will be living and starting your family. Talk to a few Realtors that know their areas to get a feel for the homes in each area in your price range, but try to get to know the towns you will be moving to. Each town is very different, and that takes some time to figure out.

Take your time. Talk to people that live in those towns, friends strangers, anyone. Figure out what you want from your new town. Figure out which neighborhoods suit you the best. Take a walk around the block when you look at a home. How are the schools? How are the Parks? What are the taxes like? What is going on in the new town? How will I commute to work?

Figure out which town is best for you. Then figure out which part(s) of that town you want to live and then hopefully you have found a Realtor that can help you find the best home for you. If I can help with any questions, please let me know.

David Paris
Broker Associate
Hudson Place Realty
Cell: (201) 745-7598
Web Reference:
0 votes
Marc Paolella, Agent, Succasunna, NJ
Sun Jan 30, 2011

Just a quick correction. Morris and Essex are both in the same MLS system. Both are served by Garden State. Hudson County has its own of course.

0 votes
Jason Blair, , Parsippany, NJ
Sun Jan 30, 2011

As everyone stated before me you are in a good frame of mind and a good time to buy. What I will add is before you choose an agent to help you with your purchase choose an area to locate to. After considering all of the x factors, schools, taxes etc. narrow your choise down to one or two towns, then go there and find an agent. A great way is to goto a few open houses and get a feel for each agent, do a mini interview at the open house if you want. Y ou want to feel comfortable with the agent from hello, as they say.

Of course every agent you meet will be the " best " but try to find a local neighbodhood specialist. I will be the first to admit that I know my local area and immediate surrounds, but the further afield I go my knowledge real estate market is less. No agent knows every market intimately. Can we learn markets out of our " comfort zone" and help you, absolutley. But we will know the ins and outs of at least one of your target areas. Also Morris and Essex are not under the same Multiple Listing Service ( MLS ), and not evey agent subscribes to both of them.

In both counties there is a current inventory of over 5000 homes and each local market is a little different from the next. So find a Realtor in oneof your target towns and then trust that agent to find you a home.

Of course I will loose my secret decoder ring if I do not say that I would be more then happy to interview to be your Realtor.

Good luck in your search!
0 votes
Karina Abad, Agent, Hoboken, NJ
Sun Jan 30, 2011
Hello Tom, great question. I'm actually in the same scenario you describe and looking out in towns around 78W... so much more space!

The biggest challenge would be selling your home. Depending on the neighborhood you will be looking in, the inventory will be much more limited to that compared with Hoboken's inventory. In our price range in Summit for example, there are only about 10 homes for sale that we would consider... quite the shift from hundreds of condo's available in Hoboken.

Ideally, you would sell your home in Hoboken first and hopefully find one in Essex/Morris once the Hoboken one is under contract. If you price your home competitively, and you should, you can expect to sell within 90 days, possibly less. You can negotiate flexible closing terms with your buyer, and if your condo is a good value, a buyer will be ok with waiting.

Of course, things don't always work out as planned so you should have a back up plan, just in case you find a new home quickly, or, should your condo sell in a very short time and you aren't ready to move. Multiple bids aren't uncommon even in this market.

Thinking this through with your realtor will help you develop the best strategy. I've seen some owners rent short term rentals or move in with family when they sell and haven't found a home yet.

On agent representation, it is unlikely that you will find a real estate agent that is well versed in this market, and in the markets you are looking. You should find one to help you with your sale, and have them refer you an active agent in the area you are looking, someone who is a realtor full time that could call you on a moments notice once a new house comes on for sale. If your realtor doesn't have any referrals, then search for web savvy agents, like ones that you will meet on sites like this one and

The first thing I would recommend you do, is get a proper value assessment on your current condo. You say that you are expecting a small loss, but it is better not to be surprised. In some areas of town, prices have dipped more than %20 compared to other areas.

Next, do some research online to identify some homes that you think would work for you, and visit some open houses. If you feel confident you could find something you will love, then move forward and interview two to three agents to list your home. Price it competitively, and soon; I think now is a great time to list. Bonuses should be paid out soon, rates are still low, and you will have less competition than if you wait for the Spring. There are more first time buyers in our market now than years past, your one bedroom will appeal to them.

Once you have your condo on the market, you should actively look for homes and research the neighborhoods you are looking to move to. Spend time in the community recreationally in addition to visiting open houses.

If you have any other questions I can help you with please don't hesitate to reach me. I have some referrals for Morristown, and Chatham/Madison/Summit area that I'd be happy to share.

All the best to you and I hope this helped!!
Karina Anillo - Abad

RE/MAX Gold Coast Realty
(201) 795-5200 xt 332
0 votes
Marc Paolella, Agent, Succasunna, NJ
Sun Jan 30, 2011
Hi Tom,

Hudson County is a unique market, so you should use a listing agent who is located right in Hoboken. As far as a buyer's agent, you should interview several and pick the one who appears best able to assist you in buying in Morris/Essex. Since those two counties embrace a wide variety of market types, I would pick an agent who is comfortable in both counties and does not have a hometown agenda. It's best to stick with one agent. Firstly, you want someone who is good and knows what they are talking about. That quality is not common, so if you jump from agent to agent for each town, your odds of getting someone good in the town you like is rather small. Secondly, your relationship with your agent is a position of advocacy and trust. Your agent will be in charge of getting you the best house for the lowest possible price and at the best terms for you rather than the seller. You also want someone who knows something about condition and construction as well as value and marketability. I've been appraising in Morris and Essex for 25 years, and selling there for over 8.

I meet the qualifications I outlined above, so I should be on your list of agents to consider and interview. Contact me privately and we will have some coffee at the Malibu Diner and discuss your needs. I have worked with many buyers in exactly your position and successfully found great homes for them. One couple in particular had an apartment in Jersey City and they used a local agent to market the apartment. They used me for their home purchase and we found a gorgeous new home in Ho-Ho-Kus that they purchased. They are now expecting their first child and are very happy with their move, their home, and their agent.

Good luck!


Marc Paolella
Relocation Director/Appraiser
Century 21 Joe Tekula Realtors
201 Route 10 East
Succasunna, NJ 07876
Phone (direct): (973) 584-4235
Coolest map-based home search:
0 votes
Dale Fior, Agent, Hoboken, NJ
Sun Jan 30, 2011

An added note, you should also speak to a lender or your bank about the feasibility of a purchase at the price you are indicating. You want to make sure that your income is sufficient to carry the debt. Your top priorites right now are your sale ( an accurate assessment of your property's market value) and a conversation with a good lender who will review your financial situation, and let you know how much you can afford to buy without putting yourself at risk. I know several good lenders who will be very helpful to you. If you need these contacts, let me know.

0 votes
Dale Fior, Agent, Hoboken, NJ
Sun Jan 30, 2011

The very first thing you should do is have your unit assessed for its current market value. Although inventory is down, it is down from a huge supply, and still very competiive, particularly for one bedroom units in Hoboken. Once you know what you can expect from your home, you will be on the right path to making a sound financial decision for your future. It is important to speak to a knowledgeable broker/agent who is active in your market and who will give you a frank and accurate assessment of your home's current market value. The market will continue to come down during the 2nd and 3rd quarters of 2011, that is why a very open discussion about accurate pricing is very important. How you price your home will influence your time line more than anything. I would not advise you to seriously consider purchasing until you have done this groundwork on your sale. Selling is more challenging than buying these days. You will not have trouble finding a home in today's market, but without the right guidance, you may have trouble selling. It is always best to work with one agent whenever possible. If you can't, then at least one designated agent per transaction. Start looking into your sale and then proceed to the purchase.
Feel free to contact me if you wish. I'm a 27 year resident of Hoboken, and in the top 1% of all Hudson County Realtors for closed sale transactions in 2009 and 2010. Your best interest is always my interest too.

Dale Fior
Liberty Realty, 525 Washington Street, Hoboken.
0 votes
Matthew Fran…, Agent, Hoboken, NJ
Sun Jan 30, 2011
Hi Tom - It's my opinion that a customer should work with a specialist when buying and selling real estate. Although the agent you select to sell your home in Hoboken will be able to find and negotiate a home for you in Essex/Morris County, it's unlikely they'll offer the expertise and commitment that a local agent would who specializes in those area's. While I cannot say if you should use multiple agents I would strongly recommend interviewing several agent's to represent you on your purchase (just as you will for your sale in Hoboken). Buyers often fail to do this, but an experienced agent will offer invaluable insight and advice during the purchase process.

Best of luck with your home search. When/if you decide to interview agent's to market your home in Hoboken feel free to contact me for an opinion on the value of your home. I'd welcome the opportunity to demonstrate value of my services.

Matthew Franklin
Realtor Associate
Halliburton Homes
0 votes
Jeanne Feeni…, Agent, Basking Ridge, NJ
Sun Jan 30, 2011
Hi Tom, I just finished up a day of showings with a couple who are doing exactly what you describe. I recommend you get your condo listed as asap to capitalize on the "sweet spot" I see right now - relative lack of competition among listings and a growing pool of buyers. I just wrote a blog about this topic:

You've already identified a number of fine Hoboken agents here on Trulia. Next will be finding one to help you on the buy side. Today I was pounding the pavement in Somerset County's Warren, Watchung, and Basking Ridge and Morris County's Chatham, Madision and Long Hill. Between previewing and showing I know the inventory here in your price point. If any of these communities are of interest, I can help you.

You are right - the convergence of low home prices and low rates is very attractive - and very unusual by historic standards. You are on the right track for sure.

It is also a very good idea to have a converation with a banker to confirm your financial ability to buy without selling - ie, will the bank preapprove you without a contingency for the sale of your condo - and to clarify budget for the new home.

Jeanne Feenick
Unwavering Commitment to Service
Web Reference:
0 votes
Jeremy Gulish, Agent, Morristown, NJ
Sun Jan 30, 2011
Hi Tom,

You have a good attitude going into the transition. Right now, while you may take a small hit on the sale of your Hoboken condo, you will in turn be able to buy at a discount in Morris/Essex County. While the buyer of your place will get a discount from what you may have paid a few years ago, you will also get the same discount on your purchase - so it is a push really... Plus mortgage rates are at incredible lows so that doesn't hurt either.

I'd recommend that you find an experienced agent in Hoboken for the sale of your condo. For the purchase, I'd recommend that you identify one agent who works in both Morris and Essex county. For instance, I work primarily in northern Morris County but often find myself working in Essex as well - I was out showing a client condos in Verona this afternoon actually. Working with several buyer agents can become challenging as it can take time for an agent to help a client identify exactly what is the best fit. It is good to get started on finding the target areas where you might want to buy prior to listing your condo so you are prepared to get serious on your home hunt in case your condo goes under contract quickly.

It would be helpful to make a priority list of what is important for you (i.e. schools, being close to a town, property size, transportation/commute time, etc.). It also helps to get out on a lazy Sunday afternoon to drive around and get a feel for an area. A local agent can also help provide you with suggested towns based off of your priorities. For example, you might like Morristown (what I call the Hoboken of the West) as it is a larger town with a good downtown with restaurants, bars, and a lot of young professional. It has a train station for access to Hoboken and NYC, and is close to Interstate 287 & 80 and Route 24. There are some details on my website.

Regardless, having a good idea of your ideal community and home will make the home buying experience a really fun and easy transition to the "country."

Best of luck with your forthcoming move. If you need anything or just want to get a feel for communities in Morris and Essex, don't hesitate to reach out.

Warm regards,

Jeremy Gulish
(908) 303-0926
Keller Williams Towne Square Realty
0 votes
Robin Silver…, Mortgage Broker Or Lender, Garden City, NY
Sun Jan 30, 2011
Tom, you have already gotten plenty of advice from agents, but there is something else that you should consider. If you are planning to take out a mortgage on the new home, you should make sure that your income is sufficient to carry all of the debt. I have had some clients who are able to do this, and some who are not. Everyone is in a different place financially, and even though you may have the money for the down payment, you may not have the income to qualify for all of your debt. If you would like some help going through all the numbers, before you start thinking that you can buy before you sell, give me a call.
0 votes
Soha Fontaine, Agent, Hoboken, NJ
Sun Jan 30, 2011
Dear Tom,
I agree with Andy Garcia and Lori Turoff here, they both have great ideas on how to approach new market.
This is the best time to sell in Hoboken as you will be in the market for the Spring buyers. Our inventory is all time low. We only have 350 condos for sale in Hoboken, while 6 months ago we had 450 units active and 18 months ago we had a large 550 active units. I will be more than happy to discuss your options and make this transition seamless for you. I have access to top RE/MAX agents in NJ and would be happy to share that information.

I close between 35 to 40 yearly in Hoboken and I am confident I can sell your home for the maximum $ value our market can bare within the time line you are planning to sell.

Please feel free to review my bio at or at…

Feel free to call me at 917.892.8977 for a quick chat and I will be able to meet you and give you an assessment of your home and guide you on how to prepare your home before you hit the market.

Looking forward to working with you,
Soha Fontaine
RE/MAX Gold Coast Realty
56 Newark St. Hoboken, NJ 07030

P: 917.892.8977
F: 201.795.1245 Your Solution to Real Estate
0 votes
Dolores Engl…, Agent, Hoboken,, NJ
Sun Jan 30, 2011
Hi Tom,
It is a good time to upgrade to a family home. It would be beneficial to use an agent that
you like and feel comfortable with to aid you in your search for a new family home.
I will be happy to assist you in the sale of your condo in Hoboken. You can start by
listing your condo and also start looking for the home. The process time varies.
I have seen units go into contract as quickly as a week or as long as a few months.
Sometimes selling/buying can move quickly, other times it takes a while.
Please feel free to contact me. I will try to answer your questions and concerns.

Dolores England
R. Fiore Real Estate
(201) 963-0088 x 14
(201) 284-9993
Web Reference:
0 votes
Lori Turoff, Agent, Hoboken, NJ
Sun Jan 30, 2011
Hi Tom,
First you should shop around for the best agent you can find in Hoboken to sell your home. Then let that agent refer you to a top agent in the 'burbs. If you don't "click" with who they refer, ask them for another recommendation. Agents know what criteria to look at to determine which other agents are successful. (You can also go to and check out the agent reviews being done by past clients that just started posting there).

Most sellers will list their current home and start looking at new places casually to get a sense of the market. Once you have a contract in place for your sale, you can ramp up the search in the 'burbs but you'll already have seen a 'critical mass' so assessing what is currently on the market, its value and how it suits your needs will be easier since you'll have an educated basis from which to make your decision.

You may want the same attorney to handle both transactions to simplify coordinating the timing and closing. If the timing doesn't work out perfectly (i.e., you haven't found the perfect place to buy yet) you might consider renting your current home back from the new owner after you close - it's called a "use and occupancy agreement" which is just a fancy term for a lease, so you can keep looking for a while longer and have sufficient time to close on your purchase.

The average number of days it currently takes a Hoboken condo to go from being listed to being under contract is about 80 days. It takes about 45 days to close. Most buyers spend about 3 to 6 months shopping before buying a new home.

I hope this is helpful!

Lori & Howard Turoff
Realtor Associates
The Turoff Realty Team at
Century 21 Innovative Realty
220 Washington Street
Hoboken NJ 07030
Office 201.792.7601
201 792 7601 ext 110
Lori's Cell: 201 993 9500
NJAR Circle of Excellence Silver '09
Bronze '04 '06 '07 '08
0 votes
Andres Garcia, Agent, Hoboken, NJ
Sun Jan 30, 2011

You are in the right mindset to try and buy up in a down market.

You will want to use an agent to help you with your sale in Hoboken. Then, depending on how large an area you are looking in you may have to work with a couple of agents for your purchase. You'll want an agent representing you on the buy side that will be familiar with the area you are looking in. Unfortunately, if you are not sure what area that is yet you may have to speak to a couple of different agents and look in a couple of different areas. Once you determine the area you are comfortable with you would want to try and stick with just one agent to help you with the purchase so you can build a relationship and they can get to know your needs and wants.

I would suggest finding a seller's agent in Hoboken who can refer you to a couple of agents to help you with your purchase. If the agents are in communication and on the same page they will be better able to assist you and best time the closings to benefit you the most.

I hope this advise helps.

If you have any questions, or are looking for a seller's agent, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Andres Garcia
Sales Associate, CDPE
RE/MAX Gold Coast Realty
56 Newark Street
Hoboken, NJ 07030
Direct: 201 795-5200 x340
0 votes
Search Advice
Ask our community a question

Email me when…

Learn more