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Investment Property: When It’s Time to Sell

Two men shaking hands in front of sold house signA common goal among long-term property investors is to hold investment property for many years. After some time has passed and it has appreciated in value, you may decide to either sell the investment property or you might choose to leave it as an inheritance to your children. One challenge will be timing when following the first strategy. As the Upkeep Media agency explains, the ability to sell your property at the perfect period can make the difference between phenomenal profits and disappointing returns.

It is better not to rely on hope by holding to a property when it is not meeting your expectations. Alternatively, you don’t want to become greedy and hold on too long, forcing you to sell it during a downturn after missing the high.

How do you know the right time to sell an investment property?

Each investor has different objectives and ways of measuring success or failure. The type of property and the specific market also play an enormous role in making this decision. Aside from that, here are the things you should look at to determine if you should sell the property today, wait until sometime in the future or if you should have sold it in the past. Hopefully, this post will make it easier to reach a decision.

1. How is the investment performing?

View over man's shoulder looking at ipadIt is a mistake to hold to an investment property when the asset is not meeting your projections. Also, it is a blunder to hold on when the property is meeting your financial targets. However, it is taking a toll on your emotions or so much time to manage. If the cost (time, energy, or money) of owning the asset is not what you anticipated, sell it. Please, do not insist on waiting it out because of pride or stubbornness. If it isn’t working, cut your losses, liquidate the asset, and put the money into something better.

Interestingly, you learn the best lessons from these kinds of experiences. They help expand the range of tools you have for evaluating properties. They sharpen your instincts and help you become the hard-nosed investor you need to be to succeed.

2. The market is changing

If the prevailing conditions in the market start to change and those changes are moving in a direction that does not favor you, then it is time to sell the property. All real estate markets have cycles. Cycles boom and bust cycles repeat over time. If you are in a market where property values have been rising for a while but recently started to tank, it may be a decent time to sell the asset. In those situations, your investment’s price will often have no place to go but down. You can sell the investment, take the money, and put it in a different type of asset. Or look for another property with brighter prospects in a more attractive location. Don’t let the coming changes catch you unawares. It’s essential to act fast.

3. Your costs will increase significantly in the future

Images of demolition of room in house for remodelingSometimes you find yourself in an unlikely position where you are making money on a property, but you still have to sell it. That happens when you discover some big-ticket maintenance issues with the home or your costs are about to go up significantly. In this situation, you may be willing to wait to see if the property value will go up further to justify the higher cost of holding it. But this is usually not a good idea. Especially if you have already made good returns: the investment has doubled or almost doubled its value.

4. You have met your investment goals

When you reach the goals you set out to accomplish when you bought the property, you might decide to sell your investment property. That is the best-case scenario that most investors desire, but not without its challenges. You may feel great temptation to keep an investment when you are making money from it. But this could cause you to miss opportunities to invest your profits in a cheaper property with better prospects. It also exposes you to some of the issues discussed above. That is why developing the discipline to sell your investment at the right time is critical. When is that the right moment? You should agree on what you consider a good return from the get-go for every investment. It makes it easier to sell the property at the right time.

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