How to Coordinate Closings Between Selling and Buying Homes

These tips can help make the process of simultaneously selling and buying a house a little less daunting.

When you buy your first home, the process is simpler—you don't have to plan around selling the home you already live in while also buying your new home.

Here's what you can do to coordinate selling and buying a house so you don't get stuck managing two mortgage payments during the transactions.

Use a contingency to help line up closings

If you need to sell your current home before you buy another, you can make your offer on a new house contingent upon the sale of your existing home.

This is where your real estate agent and mortgage loan professional can make the difference between a successful experience and a stressful one. These professionals can help coordinate the transactions and paperwork so you can close on your old house immediately before you close on the new property.

Consider how the market could affect your experience

When selling and buying a house at the same time, it may not be possible to perfectly coordinate your closing dates. You may need to choose which transaction to focus on first—and the current real estate market can help determine whether it's better to buy or sell first.

In a buyer's market, it might be smarter to sell first so you don't get stuck paying for two home loans at the same time. In a seller's market, you may want to buy first if you feel your home will sell quickly.

Know that there may be ways to make two mortgages affordable

Sometimes, sellers won't accept contingencies and instead choose offers from buyers who don't need to sell a home. If that's the market you're in, consider your options for making two mortgages affordable.

Talk to a mortgage loan professional to determine what you may prequalify for based on your options.

Make sure your lender understands your situation

Ultimately, the best thing you can do to make selling and buying a house easier is to choose a lender who understands how unique this process can be for every individual. BB&T's personalized approach and quick-and-easy closing process can help make your transitions smoother.

Keep it up. You're getting smarter about home buying.

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