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The ultimate sale killer...

Friday, March 29, 2019   /   by Sara Koenig

The ultimate sale killer...

I don't know anyone in the Real estate world that would tell you owning an income property is a bad idea.

Real estate is one of THE BEST investments that you can make, ever!

BUT....and this is a big BUT...when it comes to selling an income property, your tenants can be the ultimate sale killer and ensure that you NEVER sell that income property.

I've seen it so many times before.  The thing to remember is that your tenant IS NOT selling a house, and in some cases may not have any sort of vested interest in the successful sale of your home...because ultimately the successful sale of your home means they are losing the place where they currently live. Right?

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So, for this reason, my recommendation to my sellers in this situation is to move your tenant out and get your property ready to sell in a serious way.  I know this isn't ideal considering you won't be getting rent for the period between listing and "SOLD" but you could cost yourself thousands of dollars by not doing this.

One of the biggest issues that can come into play with tenants is that they need at least 24 hour notice in most cases before someone can enter the home for a showing.  If the potential buyer doesn't have a lot of time to make a decision this can be challenging, and potentially cost you an offer for purchase.

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I am going to share some of the other issues that can occur during a showing with a potential buyer when it comes to tenants, depending on the tenant you have of course.

  • Difficulty setting up showings
  • No call back to even set up a showing
  • Dirty dishes in the sink
  • Closed blinds and dark settings
  • Garbage filled and not put away
  • Beds not made
  • Toilet seats up and bathrooms not clean
  • Light bulbs burnt out
  • Touch up paint needing to be done
  • Trim work in need of replacement
  • Carpeting needing cleaning or replacement

Any of these things can be a turn off for a potential buyer.  It's easy to say "Look beyond A, B, and C" but I am just going to tell you that not everyone can "Look beyond A, B, and C."

I have encountered issues with tenants not allowing showings based on their schedule, which can be to your detriment. Or perhaps the property has areas that have deteriorated inside and things like carpeting, or paint, or trim is in need of an update, just like any other home before listing.  Now, as the owner of the property this should be a priority of yours to hit the market in the best possible way.  In all seriousness it is easier to just update these things with everything moved out of the home so that it's all fresh and ready for a potential buyer to see.


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The reality is, when a potential buyer enters into a rental that they have to "look past" things...what is ACTUALLY going though their mind is how much money they are going to have to spend to fix up the items that are in need of repair.  Once a potential buyer starts to have these thoughts going through their mind that is not good.

Bottom line, if you are getting ready to sell an income property, it is best that you allow your tenant to move out and that you take the time to fix items that are in need of repair or updating before putting the home on the market.


This will allow you to get top dollar for the home and net you the most money!

I hope this tip helps you and  as always please post any questions about our market below and I am happy to discuss our market more with you!

Ready to see what your income property is worth?  Give me a call!

Sincerely,  Sara

Sara Koenig | Spokane Realtor

Haven Real Estate Group



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Haven Real Estate Group
Cambria Henry
304 W Pacific Ave; Suite 360
Spokane, WA 99201

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