Anyone who turns down an offer to sell a house should consider how much it will cost to maintain the home while waiting for the next opportunity to sell.

Here's just one example of a home seller who has felt the pain of a delayed sale.

Ed Tuttle, who has been trying to sell his unoccupied brick rancher in Oklahoma City for nearly two years, spends an average of $500 a month for utilities and maintenance along with the $1,600 mortgage payment. He also has repaired a hole in the roof caused by squirrels, hired an exterminator to trap the squirrels who had moved into the attic, and replaced portions of a fence that blew down.

It's an absolute nightmare maintaining it, says Tuttle, who has moved to Rockville, Md., for a job. It's absolutely the most frustrating and demoralizing thing in the world.

Source: The Associated Press (07/12/2009)