During the recession, when home prices in Atlanta and the surrounding area were low, a lot of potential sellers decided to rent their homes rather than sell. The Atlanta Business Chronicle reports that the market is beginning to return. With this new development, homeowners are thinking of selling instead of leasing. What do you do about the tenants who are already living in your house? Selling house with tenants can be tricky. The tenants might not cooperate, and potential buyers might be turned away. However, with good planning and communication, selling with a tenant in place can be painless.

Give tenants plenty of notice

When you are selling house with tenants, one of the most important things you can do is get your tenants to work with you. Don’t wait until the last minute to tell your tenants that you’re selling and that they need to pack up and move out. Instead, give your tenants ample notice. Some might decide to look for a new place and move out right away. Others might decide to wait until you’ve sold the house to move, which you can use to your advantage.

Make a plan for showings

Tenants can be a great benefit to you when you are showing the house. They can give potential buyers a good idea of what the house is like to live in, if they are asked. They can also straighten up the home and make it ready for showing. If tenants are around for open houses, they can be an excellent marketing tool for your home and the neighborhood.

Out of respect for your tenants, give them plenty of notice before you schedule a showing. They won’t want to be caught in the middle of dinner or another activity when a potential buyer comes by. Let them know that all buyers will be accompanied by either you or an agent. If your tenants have valuables that they are concerned about leaving in the house during showings, offer to rent out a storage locker or loan them a safe.

Make a deal with tenants

If your tenants always paid on time during their lease and were cooperative during the sale of your home, you might decide to reward them in some way or make a deal with them to soften the blow of having to move. One way to do so is to offer to pay for cleaning services before a showing. After the showing, the tenants will have a clean house to enjoy.

You can also agree to give them time to find a new place before you close on the house. Thank your tenants for their cooperation by offering a discount on rent for the last few months or by offering to pay part of the cost of moving. Another option is to connect your tenants to great buyer’s agents, such as the team at Duffy Realty of Atlanta, if you know that they are planning on buying instead of renting.

Image source: Flickr

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