Do you know someone who may be asking themselves the question, “how can I sell my house quickly?” The reasons for the question are always different, but the end game is always the same. There is a homeowner who wants money in their checking account and a property they currently own in someone else’s hands.
William Edwards of William's Home Solution (WHS) expanded on this point, "Because of the real estate market’s complexities, you have limited options if you want to sell your house quickly. There are times, for sure, when you can list your house and quickly receive an acceptable bid. But that’s not something you can count on to happen every day. There are simply too many variables: location, time of year, inventory in the area, condition of the property, etc."
So what exactly are your options if you want — or worse, need — to sell your house quickly? As William explained it and I now understand it, you’re really looking at two possibilities.
LIST IT ON THE REAL ESTATE MARKET:
Many people, even when they need to sell quickly, will still try the real estate market. It’s established. It feels safe. It might even feel like the right way to do things. Some people might not even know of any alternatives. So most sellers tend to believe that the process is the process:
1. List your house with an agent who hopefully
2. Finds a buyer for your house and
3. You move out at some point
Unfortunately, the process is rarely that simple. William stated, "Unless you live in an absolutely booming real estate market, the bids won’t start flowing the minute you list your house. You’ll have to wait for the right buyers to come along. And even then, they can draw out the process."
Then there’s the average realtor process William has termed the “3P” process:
1. Put a sign in the front yard,
2. Place it on the MLS (realtor only listing site) and
3. Pray that it sells
Delays can start before you even start listing. Many houses simply aren’t in saleable condition. You might have a number of problems that you’re not even aware of. Many of the houses WHS appraises have problems with the foundation, the roof, and plumbing that the homeowner is clueless about. Those repairs can cost thousands and take precious time to perform.
After that comes the selling process, which again can take months and months. But let’s say you get lucky and that a couple sees your listing on the first day, tours the house the next day, and puts in a bid right on the spot. If the bid was perfect (seldom is) closing would take place in 45-days, on average.
William continued to educate, "Remember, the typical sales process involves a 6% realtor commission, roughly 2% in closing costs and currently an average price negotiation of 5% to 7% (down not up). So truthfully, your final price selling through a Realtor is often some 13% to 15% under the list price."
Then imagine that bid isn’t close to your asking price, and doesn’t reflect all the money you invested in repairs. What do you do then? What if the buyer needs a contingency, like selling their own house first? And worst of all, what if they’re having trouble getting financing? William quoted a statistic from the Houston Association of Realtors, "Nearly 15% of all real estate transactions fail to close due to financing falling through. 15%."
As you can see, the traditional real estate market is rife with delays. If you find yourself in the middle of a gold rush seller’s market, then you can probably list your house, get an acceptable bid quickly, and sell your house. But if buyers have even a little advantage, the process can take months and months.
That doesn’t sound too great for someone who wants to sell a house quickly.
SELL TO A CASH BUYER:
The good news for people who want to sell their houses quickly: cash sales are more common than ever.
How does that help you sell your home fast? Cash sales are far less complicated than sales that involve a mortgage. For starters, the bank issuing the mortgage will have certain conditions that need to be met. If the house doesn’t pass inspection, for any reason, chances are they won’t issue a mortgage. In an all-cash transaction, the bank plays no role at all.
Then consider the creditworthiness of someone who puts in a bid. Someone with poor, or even borderline, credit might have to shop around for a half-decent interest rate. Never mind someone who puts in an acceptable bid but then can’t even secure a mortgage. The whole process can get real messy.
When you sell to a cash buyer/investment group, you get paid in, well...cash. You’ll get an offer not long after their viewing (24 - 48 hours). If you need to close quickly, the investment group can arrange that. If you need some more time — because you were surprised at just how quickly you got that all-cash offer — you can set any closing date you want.
Depending on the cash buyer, you might not have to make any repairs, either. William closed by saying, "Cash buyers will purchase a house as-is, no matter the condition. Now their offer will reflect the condition, of course. But, if you do the math and factor in the value of time, you might well find that making the repairs and selling at a higher price on the real estate market could mean less money in your bank account than selling as-is to a cash buyer."
Do you really need to sell?
Depending on your situation, you might not necessarily need to sell your house at all. For people who just need a quick infusion of cash, there are other programs available. Some investors can offer programs that let you stay in your house while still getting a quick cash infusion.
The bottom line: when you contact an investment group about your housing needs, you get more flexibility at the least, and more options at best. This is invaluable if you need to sell your house quickly. The real estate market is just too unpredictable and inflexible. You’re at the mercy of others.