Giving Home Buyers Early Occupancy
With the delays in closing dates that have become so common, it often leaves buyers in a lurch. I’ve seen deals postponed at the closing table, while a buyer sits there with a U-Haul in the parking lot, holding all of their belongings in anticipation of moving into their new home that evening. It’s not fun at all to watch the disappointment creep into their faces and have them realize that not only is the closing delayed, but they may have no place to sleep that night.
So, it’s pretty easy for a home owner to have a soft heart and say “go ahead and put your stuff in the garage”.
As a human being, I completely understand that response.
As a REALTOR, here’s why I think that might be a bad idea.
As the owner of the property, you may have some liability for damages to the buyer’s belongings in the event of a fire, hurricane or flood.
Your home owners insurance may or may not cover those damages.
In the event the closing ends up being cancelled instead of postponed, you are now a defacto landlord and have to follow the laws in evicting the “tenants” if they don’t remove their possessions from the property.
If, as a home owner, you insist that you are OK with a buyer moving things in early, please allow your REALTOR to help you protect yourself. A clearly defined early occupancy agreement between buyer and seller should be signed and made an addendum to the purchase agreement.
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