The Cost of Nothing

Let’s face it, making a decision is not always easy, and as the number of available options increases it often becomes increasingly more difficult to reach a decision.  As we try to weigh each option based on its individual merits and choose the best option with the highest potential benefit, we can often get bogged down.  Sometimes it can result in what’s called “analysis paralysis” where we analyze and agonize over a decision to the point that it becomes an endless cycle and we never actually make a decision.  We get stuck in all the details.

This is a common scenario that heirs face when dealing with an inherited property.

What to do with the property?

It seems like a simple question.

Should we keep it as a rental?

Should we move into it ourselves?

Should we sell it?

What should we do with the property?

The cost of doing nothing

It’s human nature to resort to procrastination when we reach a roadblock in our decision making process. We tend to gravitate towards easy decisions, and when we are unsure of what to do we sometimes make a very easy but temporary decision: the decision to do nothing.

And sometimes the decision to do nothing is the most costly decision of all.

Allowing a house to sit unoccupied often results in increased maintenance costs and insurance costs.  Preventative maintenance is simply not possible when no one lives in the property day-in and day-out.  What would have been an easy fix if caught early on often turns into a costly major repair if not discovered until months down the road. Insurers know this to be true, which is why they charge much higher rates for vacant properties.

We once worked with a homeowner that had inherited his family home.  He wasn’t sure what to do with the property and so he simply delayed making a decision.  He did nothing with the house for 14 years.   During those fourteen years the AC unit broke.  The house had a crawlspace foundation and one fine spring day a swarm of termites moved in.  It was the perfect storm.  With no AC the inside of the house was a perfect termite habitat, warm and damp all summer long. The termites not only ate the floor joists, but they ate through the hardwood floors as well! By the time we bought the house there were several large holes in the living room floor, the floor in every room of the house sagged and moved under our feet, and the termites had moved up into the ceiling. It was not safe to walk through the house and the entire foundation had to be rebuilt.

If this homeowner had made a decision and acted on it 14 years earlier he would have been able to maximize the value he received from the property, but instead he did nothing and watched the value of his property get literally eaten away by termites!  And on top of that he had been paying taxes, insurance and utilities for each of those 14 years!

Consider your options…and act!

We believe it’s important to take all of your options into consideration when trying to decide what to do with your property. Real estate is not a one-size-fits-all game, and what works in one situation may not make sense in another.

We also believe it’s important to move past the analysis at some point and make a decision.  The cost of indecision is real, and it can be expensive.

If you’ve considered you options and you think selling makes sense for you, we are here to help.  We know that you have needs and our goal is to provide you with solutions to those needs.  We put forth our best effort to be a useful option and present you with helpful solutions to your needs.

Our motto is simple: we believe that if we can’t provide a solution that works for you, then we can’t buy your house.  It’s as simple as that.

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