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Realtor say moving up the housing market starts by finding out what your property is worth

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As families grow, so does the need for the space they live in.

For some, that means moving into a bigger house.

In a housing market where prices continue to climb, the path to owning your own piece of paradise can seem more dream than reality. 

"Mom, dad, grandma, grandpa, when they bought, it was typically their first and last purchase that was their forever home," Lee Wang, Locations realtor said. 

These days, moving into your forever home means planning.

"Nowadays, you can still get there, but the path changes a little bit," Wang said. 

According to the experts at Locations, that path nowadays could mean starting out in a condo or a town home, then "moving up" with a little sacrifice and the market's help.

"It was a sacrifice we were willing to make because the family was expanding," Heizhelle and Darwin Javier, home-owners said. 

Darwin and Heizhelle Javier bought a townhouse in Waipio eight years ago.

After staying there for six years, their family of five found they were able to sell and make nearly $70,000 in profit.

Darwin had to sell his truck to buy a 5 bedroom, 2.5 bath house in Royal Kunia.

The price: $719,000, more than double the value of their town home.

"Moving from a townhouse that was 750 square feet to this, yeah it was exciting," Javier said. 

Wang says moving up starts by finding out what your property is worth.

Locations has a new tool on its website called "it's home evaluator," it can estimate your home's value in seconds.

Wang says from there, compare that amount to what you owe, then find out what you can qualify for.

Selling comes next along with a list of other steps including de-cluttering, staging and deciding whether to show your home while living in it or moving out. 

Wang says those decisions have different advantages and disadvantages but really depend on your situation.
 
"Whatever your circumstance or situation is, there's a solution and a path that can get you where you need to go," Wang said. 
 
And once you're ready to move up, Wang advises his clients to know what they want next and why.
 
"That helps you figure out what you should buy now, if you're going to use this as a tool, equity and use that down payment for a bigger house and what that bigger house is," Wang said. 

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