What If I Bought and My Home Doesn't Sell During Covid-19?

By: Michelle Makos

What If I Bought and My Home Doesn't Sell During Covid-19?

Tags: Selling my home, Covid-19 Selling, What do I do if I can't sell my home, Can I get out of my Contract to Buy a Home


So now what?  You have bought a NEW home set to close in May, June or July.   You have to list your  home to sell in order to close on the the new property.  You are losing sleep wondering what will happen and what your options are.  I am not a lawyer and these are my opinions and not that of everyone in my Brokerage but I was in a similar situation in 1989.  I had bought a home and had a home to sell.  I was assured by the agent that my HOME would sell NO PROBLEM.  It was a strong market and a Sellers market.   And then my worst nightmare came true.  The market halted in the matter of a week.  The economy was at a stand still and here I was - young, newly married with a baby on the way.  All of a sudden, my Home was not selling and I was going to lose my deposit if I didn't close on the other home.  LIfe was very stressful and it was through no fault of my own.  Ok, well who am I kidding - of course, it was my fault - I should have never bought a house without selling my mine without doing my OWN homework.  The agent that encouraged this was doing an Open House on the house I bought.  DId I know that they were going to make double the commission at the time - Not really.  I was too young and misinformed to understand the predicament I was in.

So hence why maybe my approach to real estate is less aggressive than others.  Only because I know what it means to be adversely affected by real estate and one of the main reasons I went into real estate.  Not to get rich, but to  inform people and let them make informed decisions so they know exactly what they are doing and why and what the pros and cons are of their decisions.  This is their/your biggest investment in yiour life.  Choose your agent wisely.

So enough about me - here are some options:
1.  You will have to price your home very aggressively to SELL if you can't carry both.
2.  Speak to your bank and see if you can finance your current home to close on both and rent one of the two homes out until times are better and then sell whichever one will sell faster.
3.  Walk away from the purchase, lose your deposit more than likely and take a chance on being sued.  If they sue, they will more than likely sue for the difference of what your Offer to Purchase was versus what they sell the property for moving forward.
4.  See if a Family Member can help (parents, grandparents) - maybe even put them on Title with you to close if you don't qualify on your own.  

You need to start looking at your options now.  This does not sound like it is going away in the next week or two and time matters in these situations.  If you are the type person that doesn't worry about things, then let it slide and hope coming out of this that the market is strong and prices remain constant but I do not believe the prices will be PRE COVID-19.  I think it is a fairy tale to believe that.  We are in for some tough times and you need to plan ahead.

On the flip side there will be Buyers out there looking to capitalize on other people's misfortune.  Unfortunately that is what happens in this times.  Please please please don't wait to the last minute if you need to sell your home to close on a purchase.  Seek legal advice.  Speak to your agents/Builder and see if you can amend the offer of purchase and close later to buy time or get a Mutual Release and offer up some cash to walk away without any further reprecussions.

Here is the link to the Toronto Star article about a simiar topic:  https://www.thestar.com/business/2020/04/10/they-bought-a-new-home-but-cant-sell-their-old-one-and-in-some-cases-have-lost-their-income-the-devastating-impact-covid-19-is-having-on-toronto-homebuyers.html

Stay Safe out there and if you have any questions about this feel free to reach out.  Stay healthy and remember, this too shall pass.

Be Well,