Tuesday, March 20, 2012

When It Is Time To Sell

This is the final (I think) story in my housing saga.

We sold our house!!! Yeah and congratulations to us. It was on the market for 5 days, sold for $500 less than our asking price. We close on April 13, 2012. Why am I not happy?

When you buy a house the last thing on your mind is selling it, but I suggest you may want to consider it first.  We have sold our house too early! Which I agree is better than selling too late. Homes in our area are on the market an average of 57 days. That would have been perfect, and what we were counting on. We don't finish residency until June 30 and will be homeless on April 13.

Why homeless? Because finding a rental property for 3 months is nearly impossible unless you are willing to pay for 6 months. So.... our options at the moment are:
  1. DrH live with a friend (or sleep in the call room), kids and I drive across country and stay with our family.
  2. Temporary corporate suites (hotel) at $3,000/month
  3. Kids and I go to fellowship location early and wait.
  4. Live in a friends house that is for sale, unless she sells it before then.
  5. Find someone who is wanting out of their lease and just the right time.
I don't know where we are living! 

Hint: if we had been renting we would just tell our landlord when we will be vacating the premises. Much easier! Something to think about.

But the purpose of this post is to wrap up the costs associated with owning a home. Buying a home costs a little up front. Owning the home, costs a fair amount, if you keep it up. Selling a home is an expensive endeavor.

To recap expenses up to this point:

Settlement/Closing fees at time of purchase: $3,331.09
Improvements/Maintenance to home: $20,000
Settlement/Closing fees SOLD $ 11,828
Total Expenses = $35,159 (not including depreciation)

This is how those seller closing fees breakdown (this is from our estimated proceeds sheet, which I told my realtor the name should be changed because there are NO proceeds).

State Taxes ($1.50/$1,000) = $201.60
Title Policy ($4.00/$1,000) = $537.60
Release of Mortgage = $40
Home Warranty to Buyer = $475
Attorney Fee= $300
Brokerage Fee (6%) = $8,064.00
Property Taxes = $1,075 (partial year)
Radon Mitigation = $800
Inspection repairs = $335
Total = $11,828

Here is another way to look at how much owning a house has cost us over the last 6 years.

Getting in the house = $3,331.09
Staying in the house = $20,000
Getting out of the house = $11,828
Total = $35,159

This total represents real dollars associated with buying, selling, and maintaining a home. This is money directly from our pocket. This is money that had nothing to do with paying our mortgage payment every month.

Let me put it in perspective this way. Even if we didn't make a single repair or improvement, just the total fees of getting in and out of a house for our family totaled $15,159.09. We will have been in this house for 69 months. Those fees divided by 69 months equals a cost of $220. That is what it cost us each month to live in this house in just fees! And the fees would be the same regardless of how long we stayed here. One year or ten, the fees are based off the purchase price and have nothing to do with how long you have owned the home. The shorter the stay the more expensive the fees per month. The longer the stay the less expensive.

For all of that expense what did we get in return?

Purchase price in 2006: $145,000
Selling Price in 2012: $134,400
Value Lost = $10,600 - this represents that portion of our mortgage payment that was applied to principle every month, gone.

After we payoff our mortgage balance of $128,000 and pay our closing fees of $11,828 we will still have to pay $5,428 to sell our house. That is money directly out of our "deep" pockets.

Between equity lost, fees, and improvements the total amount we have lost is $45,759.

I can hear you! You just said that things are different now. Really? Tell me about it in 5 years, maybe it will be. Maybe it won't. Are you willing to take that risk?

Next: Renting Myths Debunked.


  1. Thanks so much for giving such honest advice about budgeting for a family. I gave you a little recognition on my blog. I hope you're able to check it out. http://countonme4life.blogspot.com/2012/03/bloggy-awards.html

    1. Thank you for the kind shout out. I hope you don't mind me adding your blog to my blog roll. I can't believe I didn't have it there already!


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