Real Estate Broker/Owner with Cam Realty and Property Management


It would be ideal to have your home that is for sale vacant, however, that’s nothow to sell your tenant occupied rental home always possible. Owner occupants are motivated so they would follow the advice of their trusted REALTOR® to get their house sold fast for the most money, however, that’s not the case for tenants.
It’s a hassle to pack, find a new home for rent and move. So, why would tenants jump for joy if the home they’re renting is being sold? They often don’t. If fact, most put up every road-block to prevent the home from showing. If you are an owner of a rental property, read this post and study it before your real estate agent puts up that beautiful “For Sale” sign.
If your Tenant has something to gain from the sale of the house, they would be more willing to cooperate showing it.Think of ways to motivate them!

If at all possible, it would be best to wait until the tenants vacate the house prior to listing, however, that may not always happen.


There are several ways to motivate your tenant so they have the house in “Show Ready” condition at all times. Let’s be honest, it is work to keep the house in good, show ready condition even if it’s the homeowner living in the house.
Once you list your house for sale, you’re now asking your tenants to go out of their way and clean the house, make the beds and “allow” Realtors into their home with their potential buyers.

Based on my experience, most tenants have strict showing times, they do not want lock boxes on the door, no sign in the yard and reluctant to answer their phone to schedule showings.

Here’s a list of ideas you might consider to motivate your tenants to show your house:

-Offer a discount in rent while the house is on the market
-Offer to pay for their move

-Offer for a cleaning service while the house is listed

Ideal scenario would be for your tenants to buy your house, so ask if they would be interested in purchasing your house. Some may not be even aware that they’re qualified to be home owners.

Be sure your house has good curb appeal especially while you’re trying to sell it. I would recommend to have an inspection of the house prior to listing it to make sure there are no neglected areas inside or outside of the house.

Of course the best choice would be to wait until their lease term is up and market the house after tenants vacate.
Homes that are tenant occupied can be the longest ones to stay on the market for sale. Consult a Realtor and go over your options before announcing the Sale of your house to your tenants.


Thinking about selling your Clermont, Minneoala, Groveland, Winter Garden FL home? Call or text me at 407-929-1852, email or visit



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Brian England
Arizona Focus Realty - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

Selling a home with tenants occupying the home is usually the least desirable scenario, but you have given some great tips for use, should we have to do it.

Mar 16, 2017 10:08 AM #35
Belinda Spillman
Aspen Lane Real Estate Colorful Colorado - Aurora, CO
Colorado Living!

Tenant occupied homes can be such a challenge.  These are some great tips to get the tenants to cooperate with showings and make sure the home is show-ready!

Mar 16, 2017 10:14 AM #36
Lynn B. Friedman
Atlanta Homes ODAT Realty Call/Text 404-939-2727 Buckhead - Midtown - Westside -- and more ... - Atlanta, GA
Concierge Service for Our Atlanta Sellers & Buyers

Beth Atalay 
Just had this encounter this week.
Get there with Client and Tenant "forgot" to put out SUPRA Lockbox. Second time so I think it isn't really "forgetting" - right?

Great ideas Beth
Bye for now -
Your AR friend in Atlanta - Lynn

Mar 16, 2017 11:20 AM #37
John Wiley
Right Move Real Estate Group- EXP Realty - Fort Myers, FL
Lee County, FL Real Estate GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA

Beth Atalay what great advice for selling renter occupied property.

I was showing a house and the buyer liked it a lot, but wanted one more look before putting in an offer. A request was made for the showing and it was a couple of days to even get a response because of the renters. They then put off the showing for a couple more days. In the mean time my buyer found another home and we got a contract on it. The first seller lost on a sure sale.

Thanks for the tips. 

Mar 16, 2017 11:20 AM #38
Sharon Tara
Sharon Tara Transformations - Portsmouth, NH
New Hampshire Home Stager

First of all I cannot imagine myself having a tenant. Landlord is not a hat I care to wear!

Tenant occupied can be a real nightmare!

Congrats on the feature!

Mar 16, 2017 12:13 PM #39
Kathleen Luiten
Resort and Second-Home Specialist - Princeville, HI
Kauai Luxury Ocean Home Sales

Your suggestions for motivating the tenants are spot on, Beth! I had a difficult property to sell that was tenant occupied and got great cooperation using those motivators. Plus we added a bonus to the tenant if he moved out early to allow escrow to close sooner. It was a win-win for everyone.

Mar 16, 2017 01:52 PM #40
Gene Mundt, IL/WI Mortgage Originator - FHA/VA/Conv/Jumbo/Portfolio/Refi
NMLS #216987, IL Lic. 031.0006220, WI Licensed. APMC NMLS #175656 - New Lenox, IL
708.921.6331 - 40+ yrs experience

I really like that you provide concrete ideas for owners and ideas regarding incentives within your post, Beth Atalay.  Sweetening the pot and providing a carrot makes perfect sense in this situation ...


Mar 16, 2017 02:17 PM #41
Patrick Willard
Rio Rancho, NM

All good suggestions. Most important talk to the tenants. Find out what they want. Once, about 20 years ago, I had a very difficult tenant. House was always a mess. She told every agent that called that the time they wanted to show it wouldn't work for her. Even when agents and buyer were very flexible and would show on her schedule when they showed up she'd make an excuse and not let them in.

I sat down and had a talk with her. They wanted a lot that they could put a manufactured home on that was zoned for horses. I happened to have one listed. I sold them the lot, helped them set up the manufactured home land/home deal and got the seller to agree to putting a clause in any sale that the tenant could stay until their new home was ready to move into.

Afterwards she kept the house clean and was very cooperative with showings. We got a fairly quick sale once she got what she wanted.

Mar 16, 2017 03:10 PM #42
Chris Lima
Atlantic Shores Realty Expertise - Port St Lucie, FL
Local or Global-Allow me to open doors for you.

This is great Beth.  Being nice and incentives go a long way in showing appreciation for the inconvenience.

Mar 16, 2017 03:12 PM #43
Richie Alan Naggar
people first...then business Ran Right Realty - Riverside, CA
agent & author

Beth is on the ball...

Mar 16, 2017 03:54 PM #44
Gabe Sanders
Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales - Stuart, FL
Stuart Florida Real Estate

Good morning Beth.  This is excellent advice for sellers of rental property.

Mar 17, 2017 04:16 AM #45
Michael Jacobs
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena Area Real Estate 818.516.4393

Hi Beth -- just like "real" people, all tenants are not the same but in most situations, a home without tenants in place will typically sell quicker.  As you suggested, there are methods that have been utilized to make a sale possible.   

Good post.  

Mar 17, 2017 10:18 AM #46
Kathleen Daniels
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
San Jose Homes for Sale-Probate & Trust Specialist

Beth, I am happy to see this wonderful post be Featured.  Selling a home occupied with tenants can happen without hassel with full cooperation from all parties.   

Mar 17, 2017 11:51 AM #47
Debe Maxwell, CRS | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310 - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods

AMEN to the fact that rental properties that are tenant-occupied have the most longevity on the market!  UGH!  I have had the worst luck with them - even using your suggestions, it seems like some tenants are from another planet! LOL  

Have a great weekend, Beth!

Mar 17, 2017 10:38 PM #48
Noah Seidenberg
Coldwell Banker - Evanston, IL
Chicagoland and Suburbs (800) 858-7917

Always a challenge Beth. I have done so successfully but you have to put forth that extra effort.

Mar 17, 2017 10:39 PM #49
Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408 - Daytona Beach, FL
Buy Daytona condos for heavenly good prices

Well, I vividly remember one guy, who was renting a unit in a condo-hotel and he required 10-15 min notice. So you come, knock and he says "10 min". And in 10 min he would step put and you walk in.

I thought he was a very efficient guy. He was able to create such a mess in this 10 minutes, that every potential buyer would rush out in disgust. :)

Mar 18, 2017 03:55 PM #50
Nina Hollander
RE/MAX Executive | Charlotte, NC - Charlotte, NC
Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor

Hi Beth... no doubt about it, if you have a tenant in the home when selling you better be offering some exellent incentives for their cooperation. As I've often told landlords, otherwise they have no skin in the game.

Mar 20, 2017 10:22 AM #51
Jerry Murphy, CRS, SRES
Long Realty West Valley - Anthem, AZ
Anthem, Phoenix, and Scottsdale AZ Real Estate

Those are great tips Beth.  I thought of the discounted rent, but I didn't think of the cleaning service or moving assistance.  I'll mention these ideas to clients of mine that have investment homes.  May I re-blog as well?

Mar 20, 2017 03:30 PM #52
Laura Cerrano
Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island - Locust Valley, NY
Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher

Selling the tenant home is a kind of problem that a lot of people have around my parts of the country.

Mar 21, 2017 11:30 PM #53
Kimo Jarrett
WikiWiki Realty - Huntington Beach, CA
Pro Lifestyle Solutions

Moving allowance is my option to offer tenants or supplying them with moving boxes for their wardrobe and other things. Great post.

Mar 24, 2017 01:46 PM #54
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Beth Atalay

Cam Realty of Clermont FL
Sell or Buy Homes in Clermont FL
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