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Old 12-09-2015, 07:51 PM
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It's annoying for the tenants too to have to leave each time there's a showing.

Staged with taste is always better. Most people have no clue about furniture placement, size etc., so staging helps a lot along with good photos.
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Old 12-10-2015, 11:01 AM
Location: Carver, MN
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I am a Realtor and the biggest issues with see with tenant occupied homes are:

#1 Cleanliness and preparation for showings, Tenants are less likely to care that a home shows its best and may not take the time to clear all counter-tops and tidy up every room, which will negatively affect your chance of selling the home. These are your friends and you say they are clean, so I would work with your Realtor and get them a CHECKLIST of the top 10 things to do before each showing. This list should include: cleaning all sinks and counter-tops, putting away any trashcans, closing all toilet lids, putting away pet dishes and toys and kids toys, turning on all lights before showing and opening windows where it lets in nice light or views, etc... To help with this, you can buy your tenants some gift cards for eating out from time to time and/or some baskets that can be stowed around the home to quick swipe stuff into for a showing so that the home shows better.

#2 Availability and access to the home for showings. Most rentals require a 24-hour notice to show, which may not be a huge deal as long as you can work it out with the tenants that they will get 24 hours notice and that ALL appointments that give 24 hours notice will be automatically approved unless they can be quickly approved by you or your tenants. Just about every realtor and brokerage out there now uses a semi-automated notification and approval system for showing that allows home sellers to approve a showing via email or an app, so this should hopefully not be an issue. 12 hours notice would be even better, but it is more important that the home shows its best. Make sure your Realtor writes in the notes to other Realtors to CALL if the agent desires a quicker showing, this will help make sure you don't miss any buyers that may not give 24 hours notice for one reason or another. Also, communicate with the renters and have the showing appointments auto-approve with NO 24 hour notice requirement if you know the tenant will be out of town and the home is ready to show as long the tenant approved this. Basically, the more restriction you place on showings, the less likely your home will show and sell, that is why it is sometimes easier to sell a vacant home.

So, if the tenants are REALLY keeping the home up, you are probably better with someone getting the home ready for showings and keeping it furnished, but pay close attention to any showing feedback you get and open the lines of communication with your tenants to ensure they are doing what they can to get the home sold. Gift them with some restaurant cards, or some money towards a one-time cleaning or whatever it takes to get them on your side, it will be worth it in the end.

Best of LUCK!
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Old 12-10-2015, 03:34 PM
7,878 posts, read 10,169,826 times
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Originally Posted by otterhere View Post
People should probably define "staged"; in my case, it meant -- like the other responder -- getting rid of 80% of the stuff (including furniture) in each room and spotlighting just a few nice pieces that were already there. It's not rocket science!
We've bought and sold a lot over the years and many houses were not in "show" condition. It is common sense to some people, but plenty of people don't have any common sense or a clue when it comes to selling their homes. Or, don't care. Outside areas not kept up or weeded. Overgrown trees. Laundry in a pile on top of dryer. Walls needing paint, clutter in rooms, odors in house, ovens dirty, bathrooms messy,... I could go on an on about what I've seen...

When we looked for houses in certain regions, I'd say 8 out of 10 homes were a mess. 2 were good to excellent. It's amazing people actually think they can sell houses that are messes and totally unkempt. If they don't care about what people see, imagine how little they care about what people are not seeing.
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Old 12-12-2015, 11:07 AM
Location: Stuck on the East Coast, hoping to head West
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When we were looking for a house, we specifically did NOT look at houses with tenants. If the house was a rental, we immediately crossed it off our list.

For one thing, there is an assumption that landlords don't care for houses nearly as well as owners. You assume that everything (appliances, carpet, flooring, etc) is substandard or, worse, the landlord took care of repairs or maintenance him/herself in order to save money, rather than call in professionals.

The rare occasion we did look at rentals, tenants made it extremely uncomfortable to look at the house. We could tell they didn't want us there. They would do little things, like laundry or cooking that just made it incredibly difficult to imagine living there. Oftentimes, they were there.

We also worried about the condition the house would be left in once the tenants left.

Staging is wonderful: it makes us forget how we really live and reminds us of how we WANT to live........if we had the right house, of course.
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Old 12-13-2015, 07:49 AM
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That's with a single-family home, I assume, and it's understandable... But, again, if you're buying a multi-family, having a (good) tenant in place saves you a lot of stress and work and can be a definitely selling point.

I used only month-to-month rental agreements when I was a landlord. If the tenants proved to be a problem for ANY reason (and interfering with or sabotaging showings would be one), 30 days' notice, no explanation required, and gone.
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