When you need to sell your house, things can get quite emotional.
On one hand, you want to get the best possible price and terms. On the other hand, you have a timeline that might keep you up at night wondering how you are going to pull it off.
In a perfect world, you would be able to call your friendly real estate agent… have them list it on the MLS… stage the property for showings… and wait for the best offer.
For most folks, though, it’s not so simple.
Maybe you don’t have the equity necessary to pay commissions and fees. And you certainly don’t have an extra $10,000 to $20,000 lying around to bring to the closing table… just to sell your home.
Or, you might not be able to sit around and wait 3 to 6 months of open houses and showings until the perfect buyer appears, with cash in hand, to pay you full retail for your house. It could be a job transfer, an illness, or any of life’s other unexpected surprises.
In these situations the best thing you can do is hope and pray, or, attack the problem a bit more creatively.
There is one option available that most people overlook when trying to sell their property. One that can help you sell the house fast, get full price, and provide you instant (or close to it) mortgage payment relief. And that solution is selling with a lease option.
A lease option (or rent to own) is when you sell your property to a qualified tenant/buyer using a lease with an option to buy. The lease sets up a predetermined term, which can be anywhere from 6 months to 10 years (depending on what price you need to get to pay off your current mortgage) and an option that sets the purchase price and closing terms.
When selling this way, you get full retail price for your property, which is perfect if you don’t have much equity or if your mortgage is higher than the current market price of the home, and you don’t have to pay any fees or commissions, since you are selling privately and not through an agent or broker.
Now, you might be thinking, but I don’t want to rent my house, I just want to sell it.
And that is a completely valid statement. This isn’t the best solution. Far from it. However, it can be the solution that gets your out from under your payments and lets you move quickly, while getting full price when the tenant/buyer cashes you out.
The tenant/buyer is a different type of buyer. Not just a serial renter, jumping from rental to rental, but a real buyer who actually wants to purchase your property, but needs more time to get their mortgage approved. Since the real estate crash, mortgage lending has gotten to be pain in the you-know-what. Hardworking families, with stable jobs and sufficient incomes, are having trouble getting through all the loops the lenders have created before they will cut a check… causing them to need more time to save up more down payment and fix any little glitches on their credit. They are working with mortgage brokers monthly to get their paperwork on board so that their loan closes.
And this market is huge. Not many people right now can by a house with cash, and those who can will rarely pay full retail price. After all, they have a big negotiating advantage. So they will wait and make multiple low ball offers until they can find a seller desperate enough to sell for pennies on the dollar. However, if you are open to selling creatively, then you have access this untapped market of actual buyers (not some hedge fund or other foreign investment trust looking to boost up their bottom line) that just want a beautiful home to live in with their families. And you can have a win-win situation in selling your house and helping these hardworking families at the same time.