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FSBO: What’s the Worst That Could Happen When Leaving a House Vacant?

Time is of the essence to sale a home that is vacant. Many people know when a home is vacant. Therefore, Vacant homes are targets for theft and vandalism. Additionally, homeowners need to remember that they must keep up with the current expenses for the home.

  • INSURANCE: Your homeowners insurance may not cover the vacant home: Many homeowners are unaware that, under most standard homeowners’ insurance policies, theft, damage, or other problems occurring after a home has been vacant for an extended period of time (typically around 30 days) are not covered.
  • PROPERTY TAXES: Your property taxes may increase from 4% to the 6% non owner occupied rate (FYI…this can be as much as 3x’s the amount as the owner occupied rate. IT IS NOT just a 2% increase!)
  • CC&R’s : Homeowners should always check their covenants (CC&Rs) to see if there are any restrictions regarding vacant homes, renting out their home, and required upkeep. An HOA can assess late fees, place liens on a property, and possibly prevent delinquent owners from using any common areas in the development until current on all payments.
  • SQUATTERS: Vacant homes sometimes attract “squatters;” people who move in uninvited, perhaps pretending to be new owners or renters. This can be a very big problem with “adverse possession” so homeowners must beware.

Bottom Line

Listing on your own leaves you to manage the entire transaction yourself. Why do that when you can hire an agent and still net the same amount of money? Before you decide to take on the challenge of selling your house alone, let’s connect to discuss your options.



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