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How to Sell and Buy a House at the Same Time

The reality for many homeowners is that, when they want to buy a home, they need to sell the one they own first as well. One valuable option if you have the liquid cash to handle it is to stagger these two transactions, but for many people, the challenge comes when the financing of the purchase is dependent on selling the first home. While continuing to save up before moving is an option for some in order to make the transition more doable, many people simply must sell and buy at the same time. Here are some major considerations to make the process less of a headache.

Analyze the Feasibility of a No-Contingency Route

The common method for handling this issue in the past was to place a contingency on your offer for a house, stating that you’ll proceed as long as the home you are selling is sold. These days, with a strong seller’s market still holding much of the United States, many sellers will consider other offers if yours has this contingency. Obviously, if your trusted top agent in your area says that this home is unlikely to get many competing offers, that contingency is a great way to handle selling and buying at the same time. If your agent is nervous that having such a contingency makes your offer less attractive in a multiple-offer situation, then think through what it would take to make a home purchase happen without it, and see if that is possible.

Consider Cash-Offer Options With Flexible Sell Dates

One way to sell your home on a bit more of a controlled time schedule but without the offer contingency would be to look into companies that buy houses for cash. A strong seller’s market can make some of these offers quite attractive even though you could potentially make a bit more if you sold traditionally with an agent. If you talk to a house buying company and get an offer, you can ask how good the offer is for and arrange to lock in that plan once you are under contract for the home you would like to purchase, aligning your finances. While not everyone’s first choice, this can take some of the guesswork out of selling and buying at the same time.

Look Into Gap Financing and Gap Living Spaces

If you realize you’ll need to either sell first or buy first, you can find ways to fill the gaps that emerge. If you need to buy first, there are sometimes ways to support the new home purchase through a line of credit from your current home’s equity, borrowing from friends or family, or other financial products that help you pay your bills until your other home sells. Alternatively, if you choose to sell first, finding a month-to-month rental or living with friends or family while you house hunt can be an option to give you the freedom to know your finances are ready for the next home purchase.
While moving, including selling and buying homes at the same time, can be stressful, you can smooth the path by saving up ahead of time, considering all your options, and prioritizing what matters most to you.

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