Through out the military community, spring brings warmer weather and the beginning of PCS season. Orders are trickling down presenting service members and their families with big decision: to rent or sell their home!
When military homeowners receive Permanent Change of Station (PCS) orders, their first concern is to decide what to do with their home. Sell? Rent? Let’s take a look at the options.
Become a Military Landlord:
If you own your home, odds are that you bought it because you loved it. Perhaps you are at a duty station that you might come back to, or maybe you purchased your home with the idea of rental income in mind. What should you consider when deciding whether or not becoming a landlord is for you?
- When you rent your home, you retain ownership. You have a home to come back to if you return to this duty station.
- In many military communities, the rental market is strong enough to raise rental prices higher than most mortgages. Depending on your payments, renting your home could offset the cost of your mortgage, insurance and taxes.
- Becoming a landlord is not just about rental income, however. Chances are that you will be living far enough away that managing your rental (emergency repairs and regular maintenance) may present a challenge.
- Your home will need to be listed with AHRN.com and other listing services to attract potential tenants.
- Hiring a property manager offers a tremendous resource for qualifying tenants, addressing emergencies and handling maintenance- but it also is an expense that cuts into profit generated by rental income.
Sell Your Home:
If becoming a landlord does not feel right, putting your home on the market to sell is another option.
- If you purchased your home with a VA loan, selling your home outright may restore your VA loan entitlement and make it easier to purchase a home at your new duty station.
- Selling your home eliminates the need to manage a home from a distance and depend on the ability to find and keep tenants.
- The PCS timeline may leave military families with little time to list and market their home, leaving you responsible for a mortgage on an empty house. Can you afford to pay the mortgage on an empty house if it sits on the market for 3 months to a year?
- Depending on the local market, there is the possibility of losing money on the sale of your home.
- You may require the services of a real estate agent, incurring the cost of their commission.
Know What You Need:
While we all deal with the challenges of frequent moves and ever-changing housing needs, every service member needs to consider their specific situation when deciding whether to rent or to sell. Both options present pros and cons and will be influenced by your personal preferences. If you choose to rent your home, AHRN.com is here to support you as a landlord with FREE, easy-to-manage listings.
We want to know!
What is the deciding factor for your family when choosing to rent or sell?