Your mortgage and relocating for work

January 04th, 2012

Is it tough for you to think about relocating for a job because you can't sell your home? If so, you are not alone. Many Americans are finding it tough to move to places with better employment prospects because of the housing crisis, according to a recent Wall Street Journal article.

People who are underwater are less likely to move for work. While some employers have offered to help new employees sell their homes in order to relocate, that isn't usually the case. So what if you want to relocate for work but feel like you're being held hostage by the troubled housing market?

  • Ask for a short sale. Your mortgage lender may agree to accept less than what you owe in the event of a financial hardship. The amount of any forgiven debt won't have to be repaid, but you may end up owing taxes on it. Finding a buyer for your home could help convince the mortgage lender to allow a short sale.
  • Do a cash-in refinance. If you really don't want to lose money in this down housing market, consider refinancing and bringing a lump sum of cash to closing to boost your equity. If, down the road, you need to move to take a job, rent your home out until the housing market improves. A refinance calculator can help determine if it's a good time to apply for a loan.

Once you decide to move you'll have to figure out whether renting or buying another home makes sense. If you are in a position to purchase a home, use a mortgage calculator to determine what you can afford to pay each month, and how much house that payment buys.

Consider all your options when deciding whether it makes sense to relocate for a job. While it can be frustrating to be tied to a home in a down housing market, don't let that keep you from pursuing the goal of finding employment.

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