Have I gained equity on my Lexington Park house? [Real NEastate]

I bought my house in Lexington Park four years ago. I want to know how much my neighborhood is selling for now because I don’t know if I should make any improvements before selling, if I decide to sell. Do you think I have gained any equity in the last four years? Did I buy at a bad time?

You bought your home at a time when the housing values were going down in the area and interest rates were very good. Also, if you qualified, you may have even received the $8,000 homebuyer tax credit that was available at that time. It wasn’t a “bad” time to buy, but the time may not be right to sell it just yet.

Four years in any market is not much time to build equity. The equity you may, or may not, have four years later may not be much if you have acquired a mortgage, or a second mortgage, since mortgage interest gets the most of your payment in the beginning. Any equity you may have is going to be rely on a few different variables, for example:

  1. How much you paid for the property versus how much it is worth now, or when you sell it
  2. The amount of money you invested in the property initially
  3. If you have done any improvements that have added value to the property
  4. And the amount you have paid towards your mortgage principal, if you indeed have a mortgage.

There are several types of home in Lexington Park ranging from twins to singles. There are currently 21 homes for sale at an average price close to $190,000 and currently two sales pending. In the past six months, the lowest-priced home sold in the neighborhood was a two-bedroom home on Lister Street and the highest was a three-bedroom single on Lexington Avenue for $242,500. The neighborhood sold average is around $180,000.

Stacey McCarthy is a real estate agent with the McCarthy Group of Keller Williams. Her Real NEastate column appears every Wednesday on NEastPhilly.com. See others hereRead other NEast Philly columns here.

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