Should You Sell Before the Housing Bubble Pops

Mark Donovan

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For the past several years housing prices have risen dramatically. With interest rates continuously moving up, and more and more people being priced out of the market, all signs point to an imminent housing market correction. So should you sell your home now before prices drop or should you stick it out and see what happens? It really depends on your individual situation.

Let’s face it, we all need a place to live and the world and United States population continues to grow. Any correction in the housing market will inevitably be short lived, relatively speaking. Historically it is not uncommon to see house prices drop 10-20% during a correction cycle and for these cycles to last several years. Inevitably, however, the housing market recovers and prices continue to rise over the long run.

Before a homeowner decides to sell out to beat the housing market, he or she should first decide what their 5 and 10 year plans are and what their home needs will be. If the plan is to stay in the same community and that the current home will meet their long term needs, e. g. enough bedrooms for a growing young family, then there should be no real reason to sell out. Unless of course your feeling lucky and want to gamble. However, if you sell out too early you may find yourself priced out of a new home and stuck in an apartment for much longer than you planned. As most financial investors will advise, it is not wise to time the market. Instead invest on a regular basis that suits your long term financial goals. Your home will probably be your biggest investment, so as with other financial investments, attempting to time the market is ill-advised.

On the other hand, if your medium or long range plan includes moving to another community and/or requiring a change in housing needs then it may be wise to take advantage of a sellers market. For example, if the children have all grown up and left the nest and you have been contemplating downsizing it probably is wise to take advantage of a sellers market.

Whatever the market conditions are, when deciding to buy or sell a house, first evaluate your own specific goals and plans, and then assess the market conditions. If the current housing market condition is favorable with your goals, then certainly take advantage of it. If it is not, then reassess your plans and see if your timeline can be stretched out to await better market conditions. If they can not, then indeed, you may need to make a less than favorable housing decision to meet you longer term goals.

Over the past 20+ years Mr. Donovan has been involved with building homes and additions to homes. His projects have included: building a vacation home, building additions and garages on to existing homes, and finishing unfinished homes. Mr. Donovan's formal education and profession have been as an Electrical Engineer and Marketing Manager.


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