SELLING TENANT OCCUPIED PROPERTY: How to Avoid Landlord – Tenant Conflict

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There are many reasons you as a landlord may want to sell a property that is still occupied by a tenant. Your tenant could be treating the property badly and ruining its future value, there may be a better opportunity for profit with another tenant or buyer, or you are looking to renovate the property to increase its value. Making sure that you are not violating any contracts when planning to sell the house is important, and necessary to avoid conflict with the tenant.

Here are some options available to you as a landlord

1. Consider the month – to – month lease


Month-to-month leases are fairly common and if your tenant happens to be on one, then it may be the easiest way to have them vacate in order to get to selling the property. Different locations have different rules on notifying tenants they need to vacate, and 30 to 60 days is typically the standard. If you inform them that they have to move out and allow them the required time, it can be a simple solution and one that follows the rules of the lease.

2. Long term lease


A contract lease that has a fixed end date prevents you from making the tenant leave, as long as they are keeping up with payments. If the tenant is behind on payments and unreliable then evicting them is a possible solution and legal within the terms of the contract. You may have to simply wait unless there is an early termination clause within the lease that permits closing the lease early. 

3. Keeping a good relationship with the tenant


You want to make sure that the house and property are clean and attractive to potential buyers when you begin showing the house. Making sure you have a good relationship with your tenant and that they are on top of keeping the property clean and tidy is important. Offering to make a deal regarding reduced rent if the tenant is cooperative and keeps the house clean while showing it to buyers is a good way to maintain a good relationship with the tenant in their last days on the property. 

4. Tenants do not want to leave


Here are some reasonable options that can lead to a solution if your tenant is committed to staying at the house for the foreseeable future, but you still want to sell;

  • Sell the house to the tenant. If the tenant is very attached to the house, consider offering them to buy the house, with the help of mortgaging, financing, or even buying the property right out if they can afford it.
  • Offer the tenant payment to vacate early. This may seem like a loss on your side, but if you pay them to leave while the selling market is good, then you can turn your loss into a substantial gain by selling during a seller’s market boom. You’ll be able to use the market’s position to your advantage and may not have to worry about problems or confrontations with the tenant.

How much is your home worth?