"As a Seller, you are at the mercy of your Tenants. They occupy the house and are paying you money for that privilege. I suggest that you delay your home's sale until the Tenants have vacated the property. It may cost you dearly to list your house while your Tenants are still living there!"
Are Tenants Ruining Your Chance to Sell Your House?
I showed two very nice homes today in Winnetka that were currently being rented. There are, it seems, many homes like this, by- products of a time when nothing was moving and desperate sellers rented their homes in the dim hope of selling later. Later has come and I hope that if you are selling your tenant-occupied home, that you have a tenant that has some pride in their temporary home. If not, you may be losing money.
The first house we saw today was scuffed and smelly. No disgusting odors, but rather a pervasive stale smell that followed us around the house - sort of like bad breath. Perhaps an animal, perhaps just a unclean home, who knows.
The second home was just plain . . . what? A toy store disguised as someone's home? The kitchen breakfast nook was a plastic castle. The family room was a receptacle for any and all toys not currently being played with. The living room was a beehive of slides, tubes, and yet more toys. One bedroom closet was a Lego fortress. And of course, the family stayed during the showing.
I get that renters are not motivated - it is not their home and it they who are being displaced and inconvenienced. It's hard enough for sellers to keep their homes tidy and fresh smelling, so how can you expect a renter to do so. Not all renters let their house go, but if yours does, what to do?
My advice? Wait until the renters vacate and get the house cleaned, painted, repaired, and otherwise in selling shape. Yes, the house will be vacant - but sparkling and empty is better than dirty and cluttered. As a seller, you are at the mercy of your tenants. They occupy the house and are paying you money for that privilege. I suggest you respect that relationship and delay your home's sale until they have vacated the property.
It may cost you dearly to list your house while your tenants are still living there. Buyers will not be impressed with your home. Really!
I sell homes in the following areas:
Margaret Goss GRI, CRS
Baird & Warner, Winnetka IL
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Disclaimer: Nothing in this blog article is to be construed as legal advice, tax advice, or financial advice. For legal advice see an attorney. For tax advice or financial advice see a tax attorney, certified public accountant, or other qualified professional.
Frederick Griffin, Licensed Real Estate Broker Tallahassee, Florida