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I want to buy the house I’m renting, Is this possible?

I got this email the other day and I said “Possibly” as it really isn’t a yes or no question without finding out some other facts about the property first. The first is, “Have you been pre-approved for a loan by a mortgage broker?” This is a very important step because if you can’t get pre-approved, then there is no reason to even ask the other questions or even approach the owner of the property.

For rent or for sale? Can you buy the property you are renting?

OK, you now have a pre-approval, the next question we need to find out is the seller even willing to sell? Some people consider this the first question, but I find the owners tend to get upset when you ask, they say yes, and a week later you come back and say, “Sorry, I don’t qualify for a loan”.

If you have been pre-approved and your landlord says, “Yes, I’ll sell it to you”, then you need to ask the tough questions or have a professional real estate agent or real estate lawyer ask the tough questions of your landlord.

  1. Do you own the home free and clear? (If no, then you need to ask question #2)
  2. Will the home appraise for the amount you need to sell it for to pay off the loan? (If no, #3)
  3. Since the home isn’t worth what you owe are you willing to come to the table with the remaining balance to close?

If they answer no to number 3, then you are pretty much dead in the water. The main reason is that you have to do a short sale on the property to get it to close and one of the first questions the bank will ask upon the offer coming in is, “Is this an Arm’s Length transaction” and with you living in the property, the bank doesn’t consider this to be an Arm’s Length transaction and will stop the sale in its tracks.

So, once again, if you want to buy the property you are renting, ask the tough questions and find out, it may just be possible!


Todd Clark (Broker/Owner)
The Friendly Home Team
Realty Pro, Oregon LLC
Phone: (503)524-9494
Fax: (503)746-9573





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 I am a licensed Realtor who specializes in Washington County, Oregon and also work in both Clackamas and Multnomah Counties including the cities of Aloha, Beaverton, Canby, Clackamas, Gladstone, Gresham, Happy Valley, Hillsboro, Milwaukie, Oregon City, Sherwood and Tigard. All information contained in these posts are copyrighted and cannot be used without prior written approval authorization from the author me Todd Clark. If you are looking for an outstanding agent please give me a call I would love to help you with all your real estate needs.


What if there was a way you could search the  MLS for FREE just like Realtors

Now you can access the MLS using similar tools as Realtors. You are in control of what you want to search for, and you can search the MLS at your leisure. The information you submit in the form below can also be used to put you on an automated system where you'll be emailed all homes that meet your search criteria. You'll get internet access to a website that includes pictures, prices, and addresses to real estate that's listed in the MLS! Registered & Protected

Comment balloon 18 commentsThe Friendly Home Team • December 30 2010 08:00AM
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