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Selling a property with tenants – Should you do it?

tenants-in-loungeIf you’re planning on selling your investment property, you’re probably wondering whether you can do so with tenants still living there. It can sometimes be easier to sell an empty property, but there are exceptions.

In this article, we’re going to give you a brief run-down of the pros and cons of selling an investment property with sitting tenants.

If they’re reliable, keep them on

Properties that are vacant can sometimes be easier to sell, as the investor will be able to get an unbiased impression. It’s important to remember, however, that selling a property can take time. Can you really afford to have your property vacant for an extended period? If the answer is no and your tenants are reliable with paying rent, it might be worth keeping them on, at least until their lease is up.

The property will have more personality

Although an empty property will give buyers the ability to conceptualise what they can do with the space, that isn’t necessarily relevant with investment properties. A property with sitting tenants will display more personality than one that’s completely empty. As long as your tenants are clean and tidy, it could actually benefit you.

Some buyers prefer occupied properties

Depending on who your target buyer market is, some will prefer a property that already has sitting tenants. This will save them the issue of advertising the property and attracting new renters.

Difficult tenants can cause issues

If your tenants are difficult to manage, they can cause issues during the selling process. For example, if they don’t keep the property clean, it’s not going to be cast in the best light when potential buyers visit. If this is the case, it might be worth giving them notice to vacate the property and missing out on a month or two’s rent.

Tenants refusing access to real estate agents

Most standard rental agreements will cover this, meaning that tenants legally have to offer reasonable access to any sales agents. If they’re not going to cooperate though, you’re going to run into problems.

Not being able to get potential buyers through the door means you’ll be missing out on leads without even giving yourself a chance. If this is the case for you, carefully consider your options.

The last few cons we’ve mentioned are rare scenarios, as the majority of tenants will have no problems with keeping the property tidy and allowing agents access. If they’ve given you issues in the past, however, it could be worth waiting until their lease is up.

Every situation is unique, so it’s best to weigh up the pros and cons above yourself and work out which will work out better for you.