Are you a prospective buyer on the market for a home? If you have a spotty credit history or are otherwise unable to apply for a mortgage, there is hope. The rent-to-own contract (or lease-to-purchase agreement) is the option that landlords put out for buyers like you. It sets a lower bar to enter the buyer’s market. These contracts allow you to rent a property while applying for the option to buy and own it toward the end of your lease duration. Your periodic rent payments will thus include some portion that goes toward the option and is overall a much more affordable way to end up with a house you own.
Are you a landlord making such an offer? You can draft a fully legal rent-to-own agreement using a contract template from this free collection which you can tailor to suit your needs.
If you are a prospective buyer, these contracts will give you the information you’ll need to better consider this option.
Rent-to-own offers are relatively more rare than straight rent or straight purchase offers. The reason for this is that many sellers would rather stick to one or either path, ending in the predictable outcome of a fully paid mortgage or periodic rental payments.
So when should you as a seller make a rent-to-own offer? This option is for you if you fall under the following situations:
The Real Estate Contract you make for this offer will have to explicitly mention the option to buy at the end of the lease duration. You can either offer it as an option, or you can offer a direct rent-purchase contract, which legally entails the renter to buy the property in the end.
If you are a prospective buyer, you will likewise find rent-to-own offers relatively rare on the market, so your house options will be limited. You don’t have to think of such an offer as settling for less, as in fact there are advantages to such an offer.
You should look for such an offer if you are in any of these situations:
On this second point, it is important to make sure that your rent-to-own contract explicitly mentions the purchase as an option (i.e., it should include the word option). Otherwise, you will be legally obligated to purchase the property at the end even if you have decided during the rental process that you would rather not.
Rent-to-own prospects will be inspecting your house very, very carefully before they make their decision. To get a better chance at ending the deal in a purchase, make sure you keep up on your maintenance—get a good Roofing Contract.