Why Does it Take So Long to Sell a House?

man waiting to sell house

Ever glanced across the street, noticing that "For Sale" sign on your neighbor’s lawn, and thought, "Hasn't that been up for ages?" 

In today's world, where we can order an item online and expect it delivered the same or next day, buying or selling a house remains a rather lengthy procedure. You're not alone in wondering about this seeming disparity, but since we buy houses, we know everything about how you can sell your home quickly and simply. 

Contrary to the swiftness we're accustomed to in various facets of our lives, real estate transactions are intricate, long, strenuous and confusing… 

In fact, based on a survey performed by IPSOS, people find selling their home more stressful than buying a new home, planning their wedding, getting fired from a job, becoming a parent, teaching a teenager to drive, and potty training their kid. 

So, the goal here? 

To shed light on these complexities, uncover why it’s so darn hard to sell a house and help you dive a little deeper into a process that makes selling your house worlds easier.

Historical Context: How It Used to Be 

To grasp the current culture of selling a home, it's essential to take a quick glance at the past. 

Because once upon a time, the process of acquiring or selling property was relatively straightforward. There was a seller, a buyer, a piece of land or property, and often a handshake deal. 

Pretty simple, right? 

But as things evolved, so did property rights, laws, and financial structures. It wasn’t until the 1908s that real estate agents even became a thing, and even then, they were still getting the ability to call themselves real estate agents exclusively without others being able to use the term, too. 

To make a long story short, what was once a simple transaction has now grown in complexity, with the interplay of multiple factors, stakeholders, and steps intervening in the process. 

Sure, a home sale is a big deal— but does it really warrant this much headache? 

The Many Layers of Real Estate Transactions 

One of the bigger factors in selling your home is navigating all of the different layers of the transaction. It’s just a simple “you-give-me-this-and-I’ll-give-you-that” situation. 

Instead, it’s an art, but not a graceful one. More, a sloppy, unpredictable mess of interactions, where one thing could make the entire transaction explode.

Pre-listing Preparations 

Before even listing a house on the market, there’s a bevy of tasks owners must undertake. 

For starters, home inspections are crucial. 

These ensure the house is in tip-top shape or, at the very least, that the seller is aware of any issues. Following inspections, there may be appraisals to determine the property’s value. 

Any necessary repairs? Those have to be made, and they can range from minor cosmetic fixes to significant structural changes. And once the house is ready, there's the staging - the art of making a home look inviting and appealing to potential buyers. 

Marketing and Showing 

Gone are the days when a mere yard sign would do. 

Nowadays, we need to have property listings online too, with numerous platforms showcasing homes to potential buyers including social media channels. 

And although we buy houses in any condition, not many other people will, so you’ll need your fair share of online ads, virtual tours, and social media campaigns ready, or should be ready to invest in a hefty percentage of your profit to go towards a real estate agent who will do it for you. 

Plus, once interest is piqued, there’s still the matter of coordinating visits. Open houses, private viewings— they all require meticulous planning, and the real question is revealed: is it all really worth it?! 

Legalities and Paperwork 

Now comes the real "fun:” paperwork (not!). 

Whether you like it or not, with any property transaction, there's a mountain of it. Contracts need to be drafted and reviewed, disclosures need to be made, and legal obligations met. 

The involvement of professionals like real estate agents and attorneys ensures everything is above board and legally sound, but it also adds to the time and the cost of the interaction at large. 

Related: 10 Legal Steps BEFORE Selling Your House: Buy My House 

Mortgage Approval Process for Buyers 

For many buyers, purchasing a house outright is out of reach, which is where mortgages come into play. 

And a mortgage application? That means credit checks, further property evaluations, and loan approvals. It's a rigorous process where the buyer's financial health and the property's worth butt heads, and sometimes, yields a lost sale after the smoke clears. 

External Factors

Market Conditions 

Ever heard of a buyer's market versus a seller's market? The terms can sound jargon-y, but it’s a real thing, and it plays a massive role in the duration of selling or buying a home. 

In a nutshell, a buyer's market is when there are more homes available than there are people buying, and typically benefits the buyer since they have more options to choose from. 

Conversely, a seller's market is when there are more buyers than available homes. Sellers can usually get their asking price or even more in such conditions… not to mention the seasonal fluctuations that are always present in the real estate market, making it hard for you to create your own timeline for selling your home. 

Spring often brings an uptick in listings, whereas winter might see a slowdown in certain regions. And if you need to sell your house fast, but the market isn’t in your favor, you could be waiting months, or even years to get your home off your plate. 

Location and Property Type 

Location, location, location: that's the (sometimes overused, but) very real mantra in real estate. 

An urban dwelling might fly off the shelves due to high demand, while a similar home in a rural area might linger a bit longer. Plus, even the type of property can also influence how long it's on the market. 

Condos in city centers might sell faster due to the urban-working demographic, while larger detached homes in suburban areas might cater to families and have a different sales trajectory. 

Either way, you’re betting on the location of your home compared to what you actually need in your sale– an oftentimes unfair reality of trying to get that home off your chest.

Negotiation Periods 

Ah, the dance of offers and counter-offers. (But is it really a dance? Or more of a messy wrestling match?) 

Yes, it can be a rapid two-step… or it can be a drawn-out waltz, which oftentimes, it is. 

Some deals are sealed quickly, while others involve back-and-forth negotiations that extend the process. When you’re selling your home the traditional route, you can never really have control over the timeline (unless you’re truly listening when we say “We buy houses!”).

Unexpected Hurdles 

Even with the smoothest of transactions, unforeseen challenges can arise. 

A broken chain, where someone in the buying sequence pulls out, can cause cascading delays. 

And then there's the emotional aspect: a withdrawn offer due to cold feet or an unexpected life event can reset the entire process. 

When nothing’s in your control, anything can happen— which is only taken control of when we buy houses.

Emotional Decisions and Delays 

When you think of a house, do you see it just as bricks and mortar or as a repository of memories? 

For many, a home isn't just an asset; it's an emotional space. 

This sentimentality can sometimes cause sellers to hesitate, especially if they're leaving a cherished family home. Buyers too, feeling the weight of the decision, might become indecisive, wondering if they're making the right choice. 

After all, buying a home isn't like picking out a new outfit; it's a significant life commitment, and as much as you might be ready to let your home go, your seller might not. 

Related: Are You Relocating? Sell Your House Quickly 

Streamline the Process with House Buyers of America 

So you’ve read through this all, and you know that selling your home the traditional route is no bueno. 

So, what’s next? 

If you’re looking to sell your home fast, whether it’s because of probate, a family passing, a divorce, a quick relocation, or simply because you don’t want to deal with the annoying back and forth of working with a realtor and a buyer and being tied down to a closing date, then we’ve got you! 

We’re House Buyers of America, and we buy houses so you can sell your home quickly and simply… on your timeline. 

Still not sure how we do it? Let’s quickly break it down: 

Step 1: Fill out our online form or give us a call at 855-659-3289. We’re around 24/7 (yes, even holidays), which means any day of the year, you can get a free quote for your home even in your PJs. 

Step 2: We’ll schedule your home visit so one of our real estate professionals can scope out the place. (Don’t worry, this isn’t an open house– you don’t need to clean, stage, or do anything. Consider us your closest friends.) 

Step 3: Pick your closing date and get your cash in a matter of days. That’s right– whatever your timeline is, you can close on your house in 7 days or 7 months. 

We buy houses– and we mean all houses, including detached houses, or townhomes, so you can sell your house fast and let real estate be one less thing to worry about in your life. 

So don’t be like the others, letting home selling be out of your hands and take up months of your life. Work with House Buyers of America and get cash for your house and a quick sale all in one!

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Sell your home directly to House Buyers of America and can skip all the hassle and months of uncertainty. Simply enter your address – and get our offer with a few simple steps.

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Ways to Sell Your House Fast For countless homeowners, the thought of selling a house as is can be a daunting challenge. One often imagines the leisure to smoothly navigate through the home-selling journey. However, as elaborated below, life throws curveballs like: Job transfers Growing families A sudden demise in the family Financial tight spots Divorce upheavals Relocating for fresh job prospects Mounting maintenance costs Such pivotal moments demand rapid action. That's where homeowners prioritize locking in the sale of their houses swiftly. Trusted partners like House Buyers of America have an upper hand with their comprehensive resources, ensuring homeowners receive competitive, fair cash offers and fast house sales in their tight schedules. Why "Sell My House Fast For Cash" Could Be Your Answer Ever stood in your living room pondering, "Can I sell my home for cash?" Many find the start of the selling journey mystifying. Perhaps, your residence has adorned the market for ages, making you wonder, "How do I expedite the sale?" Such queries aren't solitary. For those in haste, House Buyers of America extends a lifeline. Remember, opting for a cash sale is a lifesaver when the clock's ticking. Collaborating with an iBuyer ("we buy houses" company), like House Buyers of America, shuns realtor commissions with its sleek procedures. Their proposition: an "as is" offer. And if it resonates, your cash materializes in mere days. Related: The Average Time to Sell a House Scenarios Perfect for Our Services: 1. The Inherited Abode: Inheriting a house might sound dreamy, but sometimes it's more of a responsibility, especially if co-inherited or needing extensive repairs. Instead of plunging into rentals, the swifter sale is often preferred. House Buyers of America often collaborate with such families, turning potential fixer-uppers into quick cash. 2. Downsizing for Simplicity: Life stages shift, and a desire to minimize arises. If you're resonating with the "I need to sell my house fast for simplicity's sake" sentiment, know that the condition of your home isn't a deterrent. House Buyers of America promises a quote in just ten minutes. If you've found your next nest, it's wise to seal the deal on your current residence and avoid financial strains. House Buyers of America is your ally in such ventures. Related: Selling An Inherited House What to Consider Before Selling Your House for Cash Any house sale mandates due diligence. To optimize your outcome, being informed is key. At House Buyers of America, we always advise our clientele to weigh these factors before settling for a cash buyer: Time Constraints: Situations like job relocations, unexpected inheritances, or pending divorces vary in urgency. Depending on market dynamics and the state of your home, the sale might be instant or prolonged. For those seeking an assured quick sale, a cash offer might be the golden ticket. How Much Work is Needed to Sell There’s a lot of preparation that goes into selling a home the traditional way with a real estate agent. There’s packing, renovating, fixing up the house, listing photoshoots, home staging, and open houses—the list goes on. The only way to avoid these obligations is to opt for a “sell house for cash” program. These programs, like the one we offer at House Buyers of America, provide you with a fair cash offer based on the current condition of your home—no cleaning or prep work required. We work with you every step of the way based on your unique selling situation. Who Cash Home Buyer Programs Are Right For If you want a simple and hassle-free home sale, selling a house to a cash buyer might be your best available option. House Buyers of America is here to help sellers in those situations. We offer a competitive sales price for your house AS IS, no matter its condition, saving you the time and stress that would have gone into trying to sell on the market. So, what’s the benefit? A qualified company that buys houses for cash, like House Buyers of America, has the funds to make the purchase. You also get a guarantee that the sale will go through. That's never the case with selling a house to a high-tech real estate cash buyer like House Buyers of America. Also, when you sell your home fast to a cash buyer, you know they can process the payment much more quickly because they aren’t relying on lenders or third parties. This means that your house is sold fast, and you're free to move on to your next place. Of course, while working with an iBuyer is usually the best way to sell your home quickly (for cash or otherwise), there are still several other options that might be worth exploring: Related: The Top 6 Reasons You Should Sell Your House “As Is” For Sale by Owner (FSBO) Listing This method allows homeowners to bypass real estate agents. However, the onus of managing paperwork and attracting buyers falls squarely on the homeowner. This route can often be more time-consuming than anticipated, especially if the market is slow. Real Estate Listing This method has its merits, but the time and effort involved in maintaining the house for viewings, alongside agent commission fees, can make it less appealing for those wanting to Sell Your House Fast. Doing “Whatever It Takes” Selling a house requires effort, whether you're working with an agent, promoting it on social media, or hosting open houses. But remember, more effort doesn't guarantee a faster sale. The below statistics demonstrate why this is the case: The entire length of time it takes to sell a home is more than just the number of days your house is on the market. Before your house can be listed for sale, you must do your research to ensure selling your house is the right decision and also find contractors. That takes time. 86% of home buyers finance their homes, meaning they must wait for their mortgage loan to be approved before finalizing a purchase. That adds additional time to the closing process. It takes 30 days, on average, for a mortgage to be approved, and 50 days for the sale of a house to be completed (from initial offer to closing). On top of that, if the house needs a lot of work and the buyer is getting a construction loan—like an FHA 203K loan—you can expect another 90 to 120 days for that to be approved. Why The Traditional Route Might Not Be Fast Enough Traditional house selling methods often require time, sometimes stretching from 6 months to a year. This can be problematic for those seeking a rapid solution, making a "sell my house fast" approach a more appealing alternative. Our team at House Buyers of America is passionate about providing homeowners with a convenient and rapid-fast alternative that puts cash in their pockets sooner rather than later. House Buyers of America's Sell Your House Fast Process Have you ever thought, "I need to sell my house for cash now"? House Buyers of America's process is efficient and designed for speed. This approach is particularly beneficial for those eager to progress to their next life phase without the added stress of a prolonged selling process. The Experience of Selling Your House to House Buyers of America When you work with House Buyers of America, you're working with a seasoned, reputable company. With their history of buying thousands of homes since 2001, their process is streamlined, efficient, and trustworthy. Unlike traditional real estate agencies, we do not require you to: Clean or prepare your home for sale Be present for viewings or open houses Wait until a potential buyer receives loan approval Complete costly repairs Pay a commission fee Instead, we make the house selling process easy by: Providing you with a fair cash offer in just a few minutes Buying your property AS IS, no matter the size or condition Paying you cash upon settlement of your house Providing outstanding customer experience with our real estate team Offering cutting-edge technology to simplify the home selling process How We Make A Quick House Sale Possible If you are hoping to “sell house for cash quickly” or “sell house for cash fast”, we’re here to help. We make it possible for you to: Move forward with your life in a matter of days (not months or a year) Sell your home without cleaning or renovating Save money by avoiding commission fees and closing costs Walk away with cash in your pocket Why Sell Your House to House Buyers of America? In business since 2001, thousands of homes purchased We close on time You never pay any commissions (yep, none!) We work with your schedule If you sell your house to us, you have no worries, no commissions, and no delays. Why deal with the headache of staging a home, scheduling open houses and maintaining listings? Contact us now to sell your house fast and save time and money. We have bought thousands of homes since 2001. When you sell your house to us, you are dealing with a local, established company. You can visit our office and talk with us any time if you have questions or concerns. We even provide you with a real estate consultant to help you through every step of the process. Making the Right Choice for Your Needs While traditional methods might work for some, many find the efficiency and ease of a "sell house for cash" approach preferable. If a hassle-free, swift sale is what you're after, House Buyers of America might be your ideal choice. FAQ Why might someone want to sell their house swiftly? Reasons vary, from job relocations to financial challenges or even unexpected property inheritances. Is selling my house for cash a reliable option? Yes, especially when you want to sell your house fast without the regular market uncertainties. What advantages do iBuyers like House Buyers of America offer? They provide a streamlined process, no realtor commissions, and swift cash offers, among other benefits. Does the condition of my home affect the cash sale? Not with entities like House Buyers of America, as they offer to buy homes "as is." How long does it take to get a cash offer for my house? With House Buyers of America, you can get an offer in as quick as 10 minutes. Is it wise to downsize my home? It's a personal decision, often influenced by lifestyle changes, desires for simplicity, or financial considerations. What should I consider before selling my house for cash? You should assess your time constraints, the current market, your home's condition, and the reliability of your chosen cash buyer. Can I sell an inherited house for cash? Absolutely. Many opt for this to avoid the responsibilities and potential repairs of an inherited property Get Started Today There is simply no other method of selling a home that is this stress-free. We look forward to helping you sell your house as fast as possible. There’s a reason why we have so many five-star reviews—our process simply works. If you’re ready to get started on the process of selling your house fast, the quickest way to do so will be by filling out our online form or calling us at 855-336-7167. After you answer just a few questions, you’ll have the option to accept a fair cash offer, sign a sales agreement, and close the deal. We know it’s hard to believe, but really, that’s it! Sell Home Fast and Fast House Buying House Buyers of America is one of the leading services for people looking for companies promising a cash offer for their homes in Maryland. Are you looking to sell your home? Do you want your home bought now? Rely on House Buyers of America to buy your house fast, AS IS for cash without the hassle of commissions or a lengthy sales process. If you need more convincing, check out these customer sold homes stories. Call us now at 855-336-7167 or fill out our online form to get a cash offer in 10 minutes! Cities and Counties in Maryland Where We Buy Houses Aberdeen Adelphi Annapolis Baltimore Bel-Air Beltsville Bowie Burtonsville Bushwood Catonsville Chesapeake Beach Chevy Chase Chillum Clinton Colesville College Park Columbia Crofton Darnestown Edgewater Eldersburg Elkton Essex Fells Point Fort Washington Frederick Gaithersburg Glen Burnie Greenbelt Gwynn Oak Halethorpe Havre De Grace Hyattsville Indian Head Lanham Leonardtown Lexington Park Lochearn Marlow Heights Mechanicsville Milford Mill Monkton Monrovia Montgomery County Mount Rainier Nanjemoy Olney Oxon Hill Pikesville Potomac Prince George's County Randallstown Rockville Rosedale Walkersville West River White Plains And more! We’ve worked hard to establish the best platform for quickly selling your home in Maryland. With our “We Buy Maryland Houses” program, you can quickly get your home off your hands, all for a very fair price. We’d love to chat more about finding ways to sell your Maryland property and help you achieve your long-term financial goals. Why You Should Use House Buyers of America Selling a house is stressful enough, even if you live in a very competitive state for housing like Maryland. When you add in the trials of trying to sell your house during a personal financial emergency or the emotions of an estate sale, it can be overwhelming. Let House Buyers of America buy your house; as suggested, we buy houses in Maryland and we put a lot of pride into our work. Here are just a few ways House Buyers of America can make a real difference: No Commission Yes, you read that right. House Buyers of America takes no commission when buying your home. This frees up at least 6% in the value of your home, significant savings that you can apply to your next home. With Maryland’s high real estate values, that means you could potentially save tens of thousands of dollars. With no commissions, you can be assured that you get a fair price for your home. Related: Three Tips to Sell Your House Fast for Cash Fast House Buying House Buyers of America promises to get you an offer within 10 minutes over the phone. It doesn’t matter if you are trying to sell a home in Maryland, Virginia, D.C., or any of our other markets. That means no more waiting on real estate agents to list your home and then receiving an offer from a potential buyer in weeks or months. Close in as Little as 7 Days Some companies will tell you “We buy Maryland houses in 7 days,” but they don’t have adequate capital or a fully staffed office to accomplish this. House Buyers of America’s goal is to buy houses in Maryland in as little as 7 days because we try hard to ensure we buy it as quickly as possible. We have plenty of capital—enough to buy many more houses than we’re buying now. Plus, we have a fully staffed office ready to handle any new deals. Our commitment to a speedy sale is a hallmark of House Buyers of America. Any Condition, AS IS This is not a gimmick. We buy houses AS IS in Maryland, in any condition—from a tear-down to relatively new houses. Whether it needs tons of repairs or no repairs at all, our purchases are not made based on the condition of the home. Our offers are made in cash for any condition and on an AS IS basis. When Should You Use House Buyers of America? Clients of House Buyers of America range across demographics, ages, and financial situations. We help make it possible for Maryland homeowners to achieve their financial dreams. As a result, there are certain reasons why our customers tell us why they sell their houses to us. Job Transfer Did you just get a promotion that requires you to relocate? Or maybe your local office is closing down and you have to relocate to another city quickly in order to keep your job. Whatever your job transfer needs are, we offer cash for your home and we can close quickly. Buying a New House Perhaps the thought of juggling the sale of your current home and purchasing a new one at the same time in the same local market might be creating a lot of stress. Have you considered having to have your home staged and then factor in coordinating where to live after you sell? What should you do? Put a home sale contingency in an offer to purchase a new house and risk making your offer much less competitive. Or should you buy a house first and then risk not being able to sell your current house, leaving you stuck with two mortgages? This is the age-old real estate dilemma. If you’re in this situation, you’ve come to the right place! With House Buyers of America, you get a guaranteed sale of your house and we’re flexible on the closing date (and no closing costs). After the purchase agreement is signed, your home sale is covered and you can start looking for a new home without worrying about selling your existing home. Divorce Divorce can be a huge disruptor, emotionally and financially. In most cases, the divorced couple needs to sell their house fast so they can divvy up the assets and make a clean break. Many in a divorce situation look for a “sell my house fast Maryland” company so they can sell their house without having to go through the arduous process of a traditional sale. Finding a real estate agent, renovating, cleaning, and staging the house, agreeing on a list price, negotiating the terms of the contract, etc. This is normally a stressful enough task, but if you add divorce into the mix, it feels impossible. Why not pick up the phone and get an offer in 10 minutes? Or simply fill out our online form and get an offer quickly. No need to renovate, stage, select a Realtor, and deal with people traipsing through your house and losing all of your privacy for 6-12 months. Real solutions are well within reach. There is an alternative: House Buyers of America! Financial Distress Are you in a financial bind with thousands of dollars locked away in your home? Most people do not realize they can directly access the accumulated equity of their home in their hands in as little as 7 days until they contact House Buyers of America. We offer fair prices for when you need an immediate cash infusion to stave off foreclosure, bankruptcy, or whatever life throws at you. Medical Emergency, Retired, Downsizing Some of our clients are elderly and have stayed in their homes for years, but have stumbled into a medical emergency and need the equity in their homes to pay for hospital bills. When this is the case, whether you are a homeowner or a care provider, you might need to sell your Maryland home quite quickly. Others simply want a hassle-free solution for downsizing into a smaller home and want equity in their legacy home. Estate Sales House Buyers of America have also helped thousands of people who have suddenly inherited an unwanted or unneeded property. When dealing with an estate, many heirs can’t decide or agree on when to sell the house or who will take care of the paperwork, so the house is left sitting vacant and deteriorating for months or years. Estate sales can bring out the worst in people and families often get torn apart in the process. The traditional real estate process can be complicated and often doesn’t work well for estate sales. The unique estate laws that apply in Maryland can also create some additional complications. So why not try a simple, fast, and hassle-free solution that all of your family members can agree on? Get an all-cash offer in as little as 10 minutes by contacting House Buyers of America. A Fresh Start We’ve talked about several reasons you might want to sell your Maryland house to a cash buyer. Then there are those unfortunate circumstances in life that require a complete and total liquidation of your assets when you need a speedy exit from your current home and town. By getting an all-cash, guaranteed offer from House Buyers of America and getting your house sold in as little as 7 days, you get that fresh start without waiting. That’s why we continue to be the choice of people looking to “sell house fast in Maryland,” as well as other nearby states.