Whether you’re buying or selling in 2020, here’s how to plan your course of action.

We’re nearing the end of 2019 and if you plan on making a move next year, there are few items you should take care of now instead of waiting until the last minute.

First, whether you’re buying or selling, talk with your agent and get an idea of where things stand in the current market so you can put together a strategy. You don’t want to buy a home by yourself; there are many moving parts to the process.

One of the common traps we see people fall into is trying to get too far ahead of the game on their own because they’re afraid of wasting an agent’s time. In reality, you can’t waste an agent’s time at this juncture. A big part of the buying or selling process is planning—that’s what will set you up for success.

After that, talk with your lender. If you’re selling your home, you’ll likely be buying another one. Selling and buying a home is one long equation, and you don’t want to guess when it comes to the variables of that equation. You want to rely on evidence and facts.

Your next step depends on your course of action. If you’re just buying a house, it’s time to start looking for homes. If you’re selling, there are a few things you need to take into account before you start home shopping. This is the positioning phase of your home sale, and ideally, you’ll have already mapped this part out during that initial conversation with your agent. It might involve a staging consultation, renovations, etc.

“If you’re positioned well, you’ll have success no matter what the season.”

The key piece of information we agents need to plan this process is your timeline. If you know when you want to sell your current home and move into your new home, we can reverse engineer the process and tell you what you need to do and when you need to do it. This way, you won’t be overwhelmed. As we always say in our listing appointments, people need deadlines, and if you try buying and selling a home without an advisor to keep you accountable, you might not finish what you need to get done.

A lot of people are naturally curious about the right time to enter the market, and there’s certainly an element of seasonality to this question, but by and large, the right time is whenever you’re comfortable. There is no “right” or “wrong” time as long as you maintain flexibility and understand your position in the market. If you’re positioned well, you’ll have success no matter what the season.

So talk to your agent and/or lender and start strategizing. Take away all of the variables, replace them with as many constants as possible, and know your benchmarks.

We hope you had a great 2019 and we wish you the very best in 2020. If you have any questions about our market or you’re ready to start the buying or selling process, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We’d love to help you.