Whether you're a lifelong resident of the Cannon Park / Ravenswood area or you're a current resident at The Medical College of Wisconsin, there may come a time when you have the opportunity or necessity to relocate. Problem is, you like the area, and maybe you'll return. Or, you realize that if you're going to invest in a neighborhood, this is the kind of place for that investment. Whatever your situation, you might have a decision to make about selling rather than renting out your property. Since we are in that very situation right now, it's a good time to consider the alternatives.


The housing market has reset and begun to recover, meaning our home's value is close to what it was when we bought it in 2006. But it's not quite there. You might be in a similar situation. It's difficult to want to sell a house that really should be worth more than it is right now. It's not like a recovering housing market hurts rent, either, since it's all tied together. Our suggested rent is more than what we pay for a mortgage each month, so if we can swing another down payment, it makes sense to own two properties if one can be paid down with someone who appreciates the value in renting, and that does exist.

You might think people who want to live in this area want to buy here, but I don't think that's even close to true anymore. Sure, you can get houses in this area fairly cheap right now, but will the housing market continue its slow climb, or will the young doctors be saddled with another expense just as student loans start to come due? A reasonable rental fee is well worth the piece of mind that graduation day means the day you're done with everything in the area. You pack up and leave, like when you were in a dorm back in college. Better still, if you're able to rent a fully-furnished house, you may not even have to pack much up. We're looking into the possibility of offering our house fully-furnished in order to save in moving costs for ourselves and potential renters. We'd buy new items that would fit our next home while leaving those that have fit very well in our current home, like the cabinets that hold our China: they fit perfectly in this house because we measured them for this house. The beds, TV stands, oven, and so on, all fit this house. In fact, some oven doors would hit the handles on one cabinet, and only two sizes of small refrigerators fit in the opening, so it just makes sense. We'll just have to determine what the value of custom-sized furniture might be, since the cost for us to buy new might overshadow our eventual recouping of the costs by leasing the items here.

Insurance, taxes, utilities, and other considerations make us nervous. Never having done this before, I want to make sure I have the right insurance without having to pay so much that the insurance company makes more than we do in the deal. I have to hope our taxes still get paid by our mortgage company, and we have to hope that no mortgage company balks at our idea to own two properties (or even rent one while we rent out another). We have to hope that utilities are paid and sidewalks are shoveled (that's the responsibility of the renter, in the case of a house), since fees or court proceedings might immediately or eventually involve the owner of the property.

That's why we're looking for specific people in our search for potential tenants, and if we don't find them, we'll probably sell the house. I have heard stories of landlords not being able to throw deadbeats out because of the weather or returning to the property after the lease was up to holes in walls and marker on walls. That's why we're offering the potential to rent near The Medical College of Wisconsin to select young families of future doctors who recognize the value in living within walking distance of Froedtert and Children's Hospital. While we understand that some of the neighbors near us are students at Wisconsin Lutheran College or work at the research park, we're not as interested in renting out a frat house or housing unit for a dozen tech workers from overseas. Of course, if we list the house publicly, we won't ever break any laws in who we choose, but we'd rather see if the right potential renter seeks us out before we offer the house to those with whom we have no connection.

Here's a link to the article with more information and some photos of the house. We're hoping that someone might come to us and ask about the house, and that will actually help us decide whether or not we'll even be relocating, since we'd have to be assured it makes sense to move, sell, or rent. We'll see if the internet can help figure this situation out for us.