Tips for Moving Before Purchasing a House

How to move when you’re in between homes.

In an ideal selling/buying scenario, you’d be able to schedule your closings for both houses so that a move occurs with ease in terms of timing and with minimal upheaval. Many times, however, an owner finds themselves needing interim housing. Perhaps they just haven’t found a house yet to buy, but have to move out…or maybe they are building a new home and it’s running behind schedule, or perhaps the closing dates are ‘off’ by a month or so. Regardless the reason, what are some tips for moving before your new home is ready for you?

The shorter the distance and the fewer the furnishings, the easier things will be. But all of these tips are applicable for anyone needing interim housing, near or far.living between homes

Rent Back

Perhaps the buyers of your home have the flexibility that allows you to rent the home from them after closing and you can stay put. This could be for a few days or a few weeks, but just until your new place is ready for you. The benefits for this is having the security to stay in a familiar place, same schools and you don’t have to move more than once.

Move out and find alternate housing

Sometimes renting back isn’t an option, or perhaps you’re moving far away so you need to rent an interim apartment or house for a month or so. What are some options for rentals?

  • Extended stay hotel ~ if you can tolerate hotel living, these hotels have small kitchens and housekeeping. Be prepared to travel VERY light.
  • Rentals ~ It is possible to find apartments, houses, rooms for rent, townhouses, and mobile homes, for short-medium or long-term leases. Find rentals that work for you, unfurnished, furnished, and even pet friendly. If you have a longer gap between homes, this might be your best choice.
  • Vacant homes ~ perhaps you know someone who needs a house-sitter for a few weeks or the home is sitting vacant and could use some furnishings in it for a season. These arrangements usually come by knowing someone, who knows someone.
  • Family or friends ~ depending on how long you’re looking at, you can always bum some space in the basement of family or friends, and sleep on the couch.

The disadvantage of these options is that you have to move twice and you also have to be very careful on what you keep and what you put in storage (in other words, be super organized). Speaking of storage, what are some options for your things??

Portable storage units

Many people are opting for portable storage, where a box unit is delivered to your home, you fill it, they take it back and then when you have a new place, they deliver the portable storage unit to your new address.

Traditional storage

Renting a storage unit is another option and may make more sense if your move takes you far away. You pack up and move your things to your new area and store them there until your new place is ready.

Ultimately, you want to try and avoid having to move out without having a place to move into. But these situations can happen even with the best plans in place. If you find yourself needing interim housing, consider some of these tips and hopefully your moving scenario will be as smooth and painless are possible.

The Minnesota Association of REALTORS® is the largest professional trade association in the state with more than 17,000 members who are active in all aspects of the real estate industry.

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