What are rent-to-own homes? Well, these homes are a way for people who don’t qualify for a mortgage, but want to still buy a house. This option is something that allows a person to lease the house with the option to buy it when the term is over.
The isn’t necessarily the most common way to buy a house, and the availability of homes being sold this way are rare. However, it can be a good idea, and some people do make it work. Here are some things that make it something you should consider.
Perhaps you are really close to being able to get approved for a mortgage, but you’re not fully there yet. You may have a low credit score. See: A Deeper Look into How Rent-to-Own Works. Or, you may have great credit, but low credit history. You might have just gotten an amazing job, but haven’t been there long enough for the bank to consider is a stable thing. You also might be self employed; even if you make great money, the bank still finds that risky.
These are all situations in which the homeowner can buy a house, but the bank hasn’t quite seen their potential yet. So, if you rent to own, you’re giving yourself a good two years to get your credit in check, while getting closer to owning the home. It gives you time to improve your credit score, or get a better job, or fix any blemishes on your credit report. Read: How Rent-to-Own Homes Work.
When you choose this option, you are going to be paying a lease option fee; you can consider this your deposit, which by the way, you won’t get back. So don’t put down a deposit unless you’re sure you want to buy the house; or, if you’re not okay with losing that money.
The downside of rent to own is that you’ll have wasted money on rent if you don’t buy it. You pay the owner extra rent each month; the regular rent, and then a smaller portion that is set aside for the downpayment on the house. So, if you don’t buy it, you lose that money as well.
Another downside to these situations, is that there isn’t a standard contract for this type of buying situation, like there are in the closings for the traditional method of buying. This means, that the owner can write whatever they want in the contract. You should consider consulting with an attorney if you are looking at a lease to own situation. For further reading, see: Rent-to-Own Agreements Can Benefit the Buyer and Seller.