Dave Ramsey Has These 3 Tips for Buying and Selling a Home at the Same Time

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KEY POINTS

  • Buying one home while selling another can be difficult to juggle.
  • A knowledgeable real estate agent can help you figure out the logistics.
  • Getting your house staged and making a short-term housing plan if needed can also help make the transition smoother.


It's a tough situation, but it's manageable.

If you're ready to sell your home and buy a new one, the easiest thing would likely be to find a new place to live, close on that sale, take ownership of your new space, and then deal with selling your current home and moving your items in on your own schedule. 

But there's a big problem with that scenario -- you probably need the money from the sale of your home to use as a down payment on your next home. And if so, you'll have to deal with buying and selling a home simultaneously. 

Doing so isn't easy. But financial expert Dave Ramsey has advice for people who are looking to sell and buy. 

1. Find a great real estate agent

Buying and selling a home at the same time can be challenging. After all, you have to balance having prospective buyers show up at your home (which means keeping it neat and clutter-free) with looking at homes yourself. And that's on top of your various other responsibilities in life, like doing your job, taking care of your kids, and so forth.

That's why Ramsey insists that it's important to work with a seasoned real estate agent. An agent who's worked with people in this situation before can help you plan out your schedule and map out a timeline for listing your home and looking for a new one. 

2. Put your home in the best position to sell

If you're going to buy and sell a home, you don't want your current property sitting on the market for too long. That's why Ramsey says you should take certain steps to make sure your home appeals to buyers.

First, you may want to hire your own home inspector so there are no surprises about the state of your home -- and so you can address issues before they serve as a reason for a potential buyer to not make an offer. Next, you'll need to stage your home so it appeals to buyers. That means not just getting rid of clutter, but removing items that may be too personal to you. 

Finally, you'll need to price your home correctly. You don't want to price it too low because then you'll lose money. But you need to command a decent sale price to be able to pay off your mortgage and put money down on a new home. At the same time, you don't want to ask for a sale price that isn't realistic.

The good news is that a real estate agent can help you with all of these things. Some agents are skilled at staging homes so you don't have to hire an outside stager, thereby saving yourself money. And a real estate agent can certainly use their knowledge to help you come up with the right listing price.

3. Explore different options in case you have a gap

In an ideal world, you'd close on the sale of your home, move out, and move into your new home all on the same day. But things often don't work out like that. It may be the case that you close on the sale of your home but have a lag until when you can move into your new home. So it's important to explore your options.

One option may be to enter into a rent-back agreement with the buyer who purchases your home. Under that arrangement, you simply stay in your home until your new one can be moved into, all the while paying rent. If, say, you can close on the sale of your existing home on July 15 but your new home won't be ready until Aug. 1, your buyer might agree to let you rent back your home for two weeks. 

Now if you're facing a longer gap, you may need to look at a different solution, like putting your things into storage and finding a short-term rental. But that can be an expensive route to take, so you're generally better off negotiating with your buyer to let you rent back your home for a while. 

Buying and selling a home simultaneously isn't easy, but it's a route many people take. Use these tips to make the process easier on yourself from start to finish.

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