sell house fort liberty PCS

Selling a house due to military pcs
Fort liberty, NC

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A complete guide to selling your house due to military PCS. In this article we will discuss selling vs. renting, selling with an agent or FSBO, and tax consequences, plus many other helpful tips to consider when planning a PCS move away from Fort Liberty, NC.

As a local real estate agent and investor dedicated to serving the Fort Liberty community for nearly a decade, we’ve encountered a common goal among homeowners selling due to PCS orders: the desire to sell quickly in alignment with their PCS timeline. Given Fort Liberty‘s status as the largest military installation in the country, we’ve amassed considerable experience serving military families efficiently sell their home due to PCS orders. We recognize that this process can be stressful, particularly given the fluctuations of the real estate market. This guide is filled with helpful tools to help you sell quickly & profitably while offering helpful tips when considering all of your options during a military move.

“PCS” stands for Permanent Change of Station. It refers to the relocation of military personnel and their families to a different duty location. This could be within the same country or overseas. Military PCS orders are typically issued by the relevant authorities and include instructions regarding the move, such as timing, transportation arrangements, housing assistance, and other relevant details. PCS moves are a routine part of military life and are managed by the military to ensure the smooth transition of personnel between duty stations.

military orders PCS

First, consider how much time you have. The amount of advance notice given for a PCS order can vary depending on a variety of factors, including the specific circumstances of the assignment, the needs of the military, and the availability of resources. Typically, military personnel receive PCS orders several months in advance to allow them and their families adequate time to prepare for the move. This advance notice can range from as little as a few months to up to a year or more in some cases.

However, it’s essential to note that unexpected or urgent deployments or reassignments may require shorter notice periods.
This can lead to a flood of questions, such as “How do I get my home prepared to sell?” or “Will I be able to sell the house before I am due to report?” or “What if I can’t sell my house before I move?”

Take a deep breath. You’ve got this.

Let’s first take a look at your selling options.

There are two primary ways to sell your house due to PCS. Each cater to a different timeframe. If you have several months to sell, that should be plenty of time to sell your house with a real estate agent. If you need to sell the house in 60 days or less, selling it directly to a cash home buyer may be more advantageous. We’ll dive into the differences below.

PCS orders

PCS Orders: Sell your house with an agent

When considering selling your house with an agent around Fort Liberty, it is safe to expect anywhere from 60-90 days at minimum to have your house sold. With a reputable real estate agent with experience and knowledge of the local real estate market, a home that is priced correctly can take up to 30 days to secure a purchase contract. Most buyers will be using financing, and if so, will need anywhere from 30-45 days to allow time for the lender to fulfill their duties for the purchase.

These timeframes are estimates, and depending on the current state of the real estate market these timeframes can shorten or lengthen. In addition, location and condition of home will also have an effect on days on market.

When selling your house with a real estate agent you are marketing your house in an open, competitive market. This means you need to prepare the house to show well to prospective buyers if you plan to sell quickly. This may require an investment into the home. This investment can be significant, such as a roof or HVAC replacement, or minor, such as paint, carpet, or a deep cleaning. Consult with your agent to determine the most effective strategies for ensuring that your house sells within a timeframe that aligns with your PCS timeframe.

PCS Orders: Sell your house to a cash home buyer

If you want to sell your house quickly and avoid costly repairs, then selling directly to a cash home buyer near Fort Liberty, NC may be advantageous. Cash home buyers can be house flippers, real estate investors, or any home buying company. These companies will typically pay cash for your house, allowing you a swift closing, while freeing you from any repairs or closing costs. However, investors will typically pay less than what you can obtain on the open market as a trade-off for the convenience they offer. When receiving PCS orders that give you less than 60 days to move, or if you simply have a house that needs a lot of repairs that you don’t want to deal with, then selling to a real estate investor can be a great option.

Members of the military and their families are accustomed to the routine of packing up and relocating frequently. While traditionally, a PCS move entailed selling one’s current home to buy a new one, its becoming increasingly popular for military members to leverage their homes as investment assets by converting them into rental properties when they relocate after a PCS. Here are some helpful tips to consider when evaluating whether to rent or sell due to PCS at Fort Liberty, NC.

How is the real estate market?

Home values across the country have risen at alarming rates over the last few years, and the Fayetteville, NC market is no exception. The median sales price in Fayetteville, NC has risen by nearly 10% from February 2023 to February 2024. While that may seem like a reason to sell, you can also take advantage of renting in a hot market.

Fayetteville, NC is one of the top 10 cities in the U.S. with the fastest-growing rent for one-bedroom apartments. Data shows the rent increased by more than 28 percent since June of 2022. Holding onto your property as investment property can be an excellent source of additional income. It can also allow for the equity you own in your home build over time.

Conversely, if real estate values start to drop you may be forced to rent your house until you can capture a sales price that would allow you to pay off your existing mortgage. But how does that effect your next home purchase?

Buying a second home using your VA loan

Another factor that will help you determine if you should rent or sell after receiving military orders is the finances. For military personnel, utilizing a VA loan backed by the Department of Veterans Affairs offers the advantage of financing up to 100% of a home’s cost without the need for a down payment. This is a great way for military members to obtain homeownership, but there will be some limitations when considering buying more than one property this way.

Although there’s no strict limit on the utilization of the VA loan benefit for multiple properties, the eligibility and entitlement serve as significant constraints. VA loan entitlement denotes the amount the government guarantees on your VA loan. Typically, this entitlement is either $36,000 or 25% of the loan amount, up to the conforming loan limit.

PCS fort liberty

Securing a second VA loan while still maintaining the first one necessitates meeting specific eligibility and entitlement criteria for both loans. Additionally, the loan limit for a second VA loan is contingent upon county loan limits. Essentially, the government pledges to cover up to 25% of the county loan limit in case of default. Therefore, it’s advisable to ensure sufficient entitlement remains to cover 25% of the total loan amount when contemplating a second VA loan.

Are you sure you want to be a landlord?

Are you prepared to embrace the role of a landlord? This entails tasks such as seeking out tenants, tending to maintenance issues, and ensuring the property remains in optimal condition — all while stationed hundreds, if not thousands, of miles away. While there are avenues for adopting a more “hands-off” approach by enlisting the services of a property manager, this convenience comes with a financial cost, and ultimately, your name remains on the lease. Should any issues arise, you bear the responsibility, including the possibility of evicting tenants, which can be challenging if you’re not locally present.

Evaluate whether the responsibilities of being a landlord align with your preferences. If not, renting out your home may not be the most suitable option for you.

This is not an uncommon occurrence. Fortunately, we’ve been able to serve many military families in this circumstance quite often. With the right realtor acting as a full service agent you can lean on them to shoulder some of the tasks needed to carry out the marketing and pre-closing tasks while you are away.

We have assisted our clients with a range of tasks, from serving as their power of attorney during the closing process to organizing cleaning, repairs, landscaping, and various other duties required to prepare the home for listing on the market. Additionally, it involves managing showings, negotiations, and other aspects of the process while they’re away. While this arrangement offers convenience, it’s crucial to maintain regular communication with your agent to ensure alignment and clarity throughout the entire process.

Here are some of the most cost effective ways for a quick and profitable sale.

Enhance curb appeal

For a small investment, you can capture prospective buyers first impressions with simple tasks to give your house an exterior a facelift. Consider hiring landscapers to rejuvenate your yard’s appearance by trimming and edging the grass, incorporating fresh mulch, and introducing vibrant flowers to enhance the overall aesthetic appeal. And in North Carolina, where we are blessed with a coating of yellow pollen every spring, it’s a good idea to have your house power washed as well.

Declutter your house

Enhancing the allure of your home significantly involves decluttering and creating an open, welcoming atmosphere.
Before any photos or showings, enlist the help of your real estate agent, as well as friends and family, to identify items they deem non-essential. Consider storing these items away to create a more spacious and inviting environment.

military movement

Perform repairs that offer a return on your investment

Buyers want inviting homes to walk into. If you are going to invest in repairs, I recommend getting a fresh coat of a light color on the walls, like an agreeable grey, that can please almost any buyer’s appetite. If you are going to replace floors or carpet, go for a lighter color which can make the room feel bigger. These simple and affordable touch-up’s should enhance your house enough to recoup the costs, plus some, at closing.

Below are considerations you may not have thought of yet, but can be helpful when planning to sell your house due to PCS.

Have you met occupancy requirements for your VA loan?

Most VA lenders require you to sign mortgage documents indicating you plan to live in the home as your primary residence for at least 12 months. However, there are exceptions so be sure to speak with your lender before deciding to sell.

Capital gains tax exemption for military members

There’s a specific provision in tax regulations for taxpayers or their spouses who are serving in the military and have been stationed more than 50 miles away from their primary residence (or required to reside in government housing) for over 90 days. While civilians typically must occupy their home for two of the last five years before selling to qualify for certain exemptions, this provision (under section 121(d)(9)) allows military members to extend that timeline by up to 10 additional years to accommodate a Permanent Change of Station (PCS) order.

sell house military orders

Essentially, military personnel selling a property can benefit from a tax exemption on the first $250k (or $500k if married) of capital gains if they’ve resided in the home for at least two of the last 15 years, which includes the original five-year period plus a maximum of 10 additional years due to military service-related extensions.

It’s important to note that tax laws do not allow this exemption to be applied to more than one property simultaneously.

Selling a house around Fort Liberty, NC due to military orders can be a stressful endeavor, but with the right preparation and guidance it can be done efficiently to meet your PCS deadline. First determine how much time you have, then seek either a real estate agent or cash home buyer who is local and familiar with military moves. Assess and address any needed repairs or updates and price the home accurately. When these tasks are done promptly, you should have no trouble selling your house to meet your PCS deadline.

At Freedom Choice Realty & Investments we have been buying and selling houses around Fort Liberty, NC for nearly a decade. We are familiar with the intricacies of these moves and love serving our military members as a small token of gratitude for all that they do for us.

As both cash home buyers and real estate agents, we have the ability to either buy house house as-is and close in as little as 7-14 days, or we can help you sell your house for top dollar with a traditional listing.

If you need to sell your house due to PCS around Fort Liberty, NC, fill out the form below or contact us at (919) 285-1284 for a no-obligation cash offer.

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I need to sell my home fast North Carolina

Author: Jason Hill

I am a seasoned real estate agent and investor with nearly a decade of experience helping my clients navigate the intricacies of selling a house due to PCS at Fort Liberty, NC. As the founder of Freedom Choice Realty & Investments my mission is to deliver simple and hassle free selling solutions to North Carolina homeowners. With the ability to either list your house or buy it as-is we have a unique offering that caters to those looking for ways to sell a house due to PCS at Fort Liberty, NC.