A Seller’s Dilemma…


The market in Seattle and the Puget Sound area is a seller’s market. Many sellers are cashing out their investments, downsizing and/or up-sizing. With that said, sellers are enjoying the benefits of a seller’s market but will find themselves in the buyer’s shoes when they must turn around and purchase their next home, a position that can be challenging. This is one reason why inventory is so low; it is a reason why some homeowners are not listing their home. They are in fear of not finding a home after theirs sells.

How to overcome the “seller’s dilemma” …

With that said, there is a way to combat this “seller’s dilemma”, it is referred to as a “Rent Back”. Since sellers have such a strong upper hand on buyers, sellers can ask a buyer to accommodate their situation quite easily with most buyers willing to accommodate if it gets them the home. A rent back is when a seller is asking the buyer to allow them to stay in the home for up to an additional 60 days after the sale is complete.

What is nice about this situation for the original seller is that they have all their proceeds already in the bank. They’ve got their money and just need to find the next place. During this 60-day period, a “seller turned buyer” has time to find a home. Under the assumption that the seller has cashed out a sizable amount of equity, the seller is likely in a great position to be competitive in this market, making purchasing within the 60 days much more doable.

If a seller can negotiate for a 60-day rent-back, they may also want to make the contract period longer, like 45-days instead of the “typical” 30. All in all, a seller normally can stay maximum of 90 days, this is including the average 30-day contract period and a 60-day rent back.

Of course, a seller turned buyer must always have a Plan B if they cannot find a home to purchase before the 60-day rent back is over. At that point, they would have to move into a rental property for a short period while continuing to look.

© 2015 by Cyrus Fiene, Coldwell Banker Bain