Interior or Exterior Motivations for Real Estate Moves

by Karen Briscoe
June 26, 2019

Interior or Exterior Motivations


It is helpful to understand the source of the motivation for Buyers and Sellers of real estate.   Essentially the urgency is from inside their personal life or situation or the drive to move has an external catalyst.  In order to best be able to help a client, it is important for a real estate agent to understand what is precipitating the move.


The majority of interior motivations have to do with life stage.  In the beginning of the life cycle, Renters and Buyers who move outside of the family home or educational environment are at the stage of setting up their own housekeeping.  The motivation to move is related to this new stage in life. Other examples are when couples get married or combine their households


The next stage is typically when the couple adopts a dog and as children arrive. These can actually occur in multiple steps with expansion of the family, which in many cases requires more space. Other reasons often cited include moving to be in a more preferred school pyramid, to shorten the commute, to live near recreation opportunities, and be near family.  


At the other end of the life cycle are the empty nesters that find there is now too much space and maintenance issues cause them to consider other housing options.  The Seller motivation is in effect are compliments or the reverse of the Buyers in these above situations, it causes them to be able to move on to the next housing stage.


Internal motivators that are not frequently related to life cycle can be a job loss, divorce, death, financial reversal.  In some ways there is more of a sense of urgency in these situations as it is more of a necessity than just merely a desire to improve the housing situation.


Exterior motivations are broader and more global.  Interest rates movement, going up or down can be a major factor in Purchaser’s buying power.  This actually affects both Buyers and Sellers because affordability ultimately impacts pricing.  Government policies both domestic and abroad affect economic conditions and political stability. These either enhance or suppress the real estate housing market.   The media effects consumer opinion on whether Buyers or Sellers consider the market to be good or bad. Consumer confidence is key to market conditions.


Companies relocating to the area can be a strong external market motivator as is when employers close down or move out of the area.  Unfortunately catastrophic events such as the effect Hurricane Katrina had on New Orleans market and 9-11 which impacted the entire United States, especially New York City and Washington DC.


Karen Briscoe and Lizzy Conroy and their team of agents at HBC Group at Keller Williams would be happy to help you determine your motivations for buying or selling in the Northern Virginia, Washington DC and suburban Maryland areas.  Please reach out at:, 703-734-0192,


Karen Briscoe is Principal of the Huckaby Briscoe Conroy Group (HBC) and author of "Real Estate Success in 5 Minutes a Day". She is an Associate Broker in Virginia, a Certified Luxury Home Market Specialist, and a member of the Women’s Council of Realtors. Karen began her real estate career developing residential lots with the Trammel Crow Company in Dallas, and in commercial real estate with The Staubach Company in the Washington, DC Metro area. Karen has a Masters Degree from Southern Methodist University and her BA from Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri – her hometown.
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