How Long After Buying A House Can You Sell It?

how long after buying a house can you sell it

You can sell a house immediately after buying it. There is no law preventing it, but for most people this isn’t the smartest financial move. Unless you’ve owned the home for a few years, selling a house too soon after buying it can often mean a break-even investment at best. This mostly relates to the closing costs associated with first buying a home, and then selling it a short period after. 

If you’re not selling to a cash buyer like Trusted House Buyers that covers all closing costs, selling your home too quickly after moving in can result in a loss, when factoring in real estate commissions, taxes, and mortgage pay-offs.

When Is The Best Time To Sell A House After Buying?

The general consensus in real estate is that the best time to sell a house is at least two to five years after purchasing it. But this isn’t to say that after two years, you should pack up and move. It’s more of a standard to help you gauge whether you can sell the house at a price that, at the very least, gives you back the money you spent to buy and live in it. This includes the down payment, mortgages, property taxes, etc.

That said, there are cases when a house promises a profit right after it’s bought. In these cases, it makes sense to sell the home fast, such as:

  • When the property value shoots up unexpectedly
  • If you’ve flipped the house
  • You got a good deal on the original purchase (e.g., short sale, foreclosure) 

What To Consider Before Selling A House

Houses are generally a long-term investment, but there are times when people have to sell their homes before owning them for the average tenure of 10 to 15 years. Before selling a home, there are some things homeowners should consider.


Has the property gained equity throughout the years? As in, has the house appreciated in value significantly since you’ve lived in the house? If yes, selling the home can become an easy, money-making decision. But if not, it may be a sign to wait a few more years to sell and recoup your investment in the home in the first place.

Local Real Estate Market

The state of your local real estate market determines the value of your home. In San Diego, the upward increase in market prices gives your home more equity the more you wait. So the longer you stay, generally the higher your potential profit.

Adversely, if the market is down, the sooner you sell, the better. Quickly selling the home can prevent significant losses later on. Sometimes you’re in need of selling your home regardless of the local market, whether for personal or financial reasons. Although you should consider the local market when making these decisions, we’ve helped out homeowners for years get the best deal for their situations.

Seller Costs

Selling a house through traditional ways includes many expensive seller costs: real estate agent commissions, escrow fees, taxes, etc. These fees can take up to 10% off the final selling price of a home. That’s fine if you’re expecting a profit; otherwise, it means spending this money out-of-pocket. 

This is why homeowners choose to work with a company like us that guarantees no fees to you as the seller. We pay for all closing costs, along with skipping the real estate commissions, inspection costs, and the often significant cost of repairs needed to the property. If your house is in disrepair or would require a lot of time and investment to get it market-ready, working with us can let you get the highest cash offer on your home and close much faster than traditional sales.

Capital Gains Taxes

If you make a profit from the sale of your house, you’ll likely have to pay capital gains taxes on that additional money earned. The amount due depends on several factors, including location. But if you’ve owned the home for at least two years, you are exempt from paying the taxes—up to $250,000 for individuals or $500,000 for couples.

How To Sell A House Fast

For many homeowners, unexpected life changes, such as job relocation, health emergencies, or financial restrictions, make selling a home fast the only option. This can be daunting, especially after knowing the risks of quickly selling a house after recently purchasing it. However, there are ways to sell your home fast without the stress and avoid significant costs.

Trusted House Buyers purchases homes in San Diego with cash at the highest sales price, avoiding costly red tape from standard real estate transactions. Since we don’t use outside financing, we can give you a fair price for your home within hours and often close in just a few days after meeting.

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