Do you want to sell your tenant-occupied property while not losing the income of the rent? You might want to think twice about this strategy.
Often tenants do not wish to move because of the huge inconvenience, the cost associated with the move and the fear of an increase in rent, as well as, numerous other reasons too long to list.
Because tenants typically do not want to move, they often make the house difficult to sell. I read in the Wall Street Journal stories of tenants placing rat traps throughout their home to imply there was an infestation problem. I, personally, have seen other instances of tenants purposely not cleaning, debris and clothes strewn about and purposely failing to open blinds and shades for light. Another common trick is to not cool or heat the home to a comfortable temperature to create doubt about the ability of the heating or cooling system.
In addition, tenants often require a strict limited schedule of showing times (limited access) and often demand the home can only be shown when they are present. If they are present, it is not uncommon for the tenants to point out the deficiencies of the home, neighbors or community to the perspective buyer(s).
If you feel your tenants are trust worthy and will do everything possible to make the home “salable”, you might want to first try selling with the tenants occupying the unit (on a month to month basis). If the home is not selling, you must immediately contact the other agents that have been showing the property for feedback. If the home is not selling due to tenant “interference” you must take appropriate “vacate the premises” action.
If you do not want any potential roadblocks and/or delays in the sale of your investment home, and you have the ability to afford the home being vacant while trying to sell, I would strongly suggest you consider this option.