| Jan 23, 2015
Not every move follows a seamless timeline. Ideally, you go from selling your current house straight to buying a new one, then packing your things and heading on your way. However, relocations (especially ones you undertake for professional reasons) often require you to manage a move from a distance. For example, if you need to move early for a job and live in temporary housing, you might not be free to oversee the moving services.
So how do you sell a house and/or coordinate a transition without being physically present? It’s not always easy, but with these tips, you can feel confident that it will get done well.
> A Good (Really Good) Friend or Relative: Putting your entire home’s contents into the hands of a friend or relative might be the ultimate test of love and loyalty, but plenty of people have success going this route. A lot of the time, what you need more than anything else is a point of contact—someone who can be on hand to check up on the house from time to time, answer questions potential buyers have, or be there when the movers arrive to pack everything up and cart it away. Always be sure and offer some kind of compensation (if not money, then a really great gift), and prepare to be flexible if things go wrong. It’s not worth losing a friend over.
> A Real Estate Agent: Real estate agents don’t just buy and sell homes—they often provide ancillary support for all of the transition process. If you know your move will be a staggered one, try to find a real estate agent who specializes in long-distance relocations (they do exist). Not only can these professionals recommend moving companies and coordinate many of the tasks to be done, but they also have an invested interest in getting your home sold.
> A General Contractor: Selling a house and packing it up to be moved usually requires some sort of change to the physical structure of your home. From inspections and repairs to regular house checks, you need someone you can trust to handle these details. A general contractor (especially one you’ve worked with in the past) is a good resource for this kind of work.
> A Spouse/Partner: Although it often puts a strain on families, many find it helpful for one spouse to move to the new location while the other stays behind to oversee the home selling and moving process. This works especially well when children are involved—you can better time their transition so it doesn’t interrupt their education or activities.
> Rack up the Frequent Flier Miles: You may find that there is no substitute for being present yourself, in which case you should set aside some time (and money) to do a bit of weekend traveling. Most homes will be fine being left in the hands of a real estate agent during the week, while you visit on weekends to clean up, pack up, and handle any lingering repair issues.
This kind of transition isn’t always easy, but it can be done. Always talk with your real estate agent and moving company in advance so everyone know what they’re working with, and together, we will make it happen.