Are you stuck in a home that you can’t afford to sell? If so, you’re not alone! Studies show that up to 50%, or more, of Americans struggle to keep up with the demands of homeownership, with up to 12% having negative equity. Negative equity means you owe more on your home than the value. If you’ve found yourself in this position, it’s no wonder you can’t afford to sell. But don’t give up! There are some things you can do to turn it all around. It may take a little time and creativity, but staying the course will benefit you in the long run.
Pay Your Debt Down
Obviously, the best way out of this scenario is to pay down the principal balance on your mortgage. This means you’ll need to make more than the monthly payment each month, with the extra going directly to your balance. In some cases, this means sacrifice. Taking an extra part-time job or weekend job is a great way to earn extra cash to put toward your loan each month. Making extra money doesn’t necessarily mean working outside the home. If you have a hobby, such as knitting or furniture restoration, maybe it’s time to think about turning it into money. Selling your services or homemade goods can be quite lucrative!
Increase Your Home’s Value
One possibility of getting your home’s value up is to complete a renovation or install upgrades that will literally increase the value of the property. Even small cosmetic improvements and can start to get the value up. Of course, you’ll want to do your research first so you can focus on upgrades that actually work! If you’re a “do-it-yourselfer,” that’s even better! The less you have to spend up front, the more you have on the other side.
Turn Your Home Into an Investment Property
Often times, the rental price on a property will exceed the monthly mortgage payment, so why not let someone else pay the mortgage? If you’re fortunate enough to be in this situation, it may be the perfect way to pay extra toward your mortgage each month. If you can swing it, you could go ahead and purchase another property, keeping your negative equity home until you’ve corrected the issue and can sell for a profit, or at least not taking a loss. Even if you need to wait to buy another home, you can rent another property for less than what you’re paying on your loan. This gives you even more expendable income to throw at your loan balance! Who knows, you may end up loving the “landlord” business and deciding to keep the property indefinitely!
It may be possible to refinance your current loan and trade it in for one with a lower interest rate which will allow you to put more toward the principal each month. You can also look into HARP, the Home Affordable Refinance Program. HARP was designed by the Federal Housing Finance Agency to specifically help with refinancing for homeowners who have little to no equity in their homes. You must be current on your mortgage to qualify. The good news is that there’s no minimum credit score for approval, and all of the closing costs can be added into the new loan.
No matter what your real estate needs may be, we are here to help! Contact us here at the Scherer Team today. Call 888-300-4431 to schedule your complimentary consultation.