Selling a tenanted property, minus the stress

A good friend asked me two questions a few weeks ago. First question was whether it’s a good time to sell his landed terrace. Second question was how to talk to his current tenant to allow people to view the unit. It is currently tenanted.

Good time to sell? Actually, a better question may be WHY would you want to sell. If it’s because you already have another investment in mind but does not have the sufficient ‘bullets’ then the answer is yes. If it’s because the property has appreciated a lot, then answer is also Yes. I define ‘a lot’ as minimum of RM200,000 or 100% from the price you paid. If the reason is because you want to sell first and think what to do later, then I propose NOT to sell until you have found a valid reason to. Of course, if the reason is to manage the tenant who’s totally unprofessional, then that’s a good reason too. Many times, tenant management is too troublesome and may be extremely stressful. His reason? He is thinking of using the money to buy other properties because the price has also appreciated substantially.

Second question. How to talk to the current tenant to allow people to view the property? I told him, if it’s me, I would give notice to the tenant and once he has moved out, I will clean up the home and then only start to allow prospective buyers to view the home. Assuming the tenant agrees to allow prospective buyers to view the home, how are we able to ensure that the tenant would not share some horror stories about the property? In fact, how can we be sure that the tenant may pick up the calls from the real estate negotiator who is bringing the prospective buyer to view the home? What if the tenant agrees to the viewing time and then says he is not available at the last minute? Do we want to start a debate with the tenant then and remind him to be professional etc? Seriously, this does not work here lah….

Penny wise, pound foolish. It’s true that once the tenant moves out, there’s no guarantee that the house could be sold within 2 weeks. It may take weeks or months, depending on what’s the price that we are willing to let go. Here are some tips to sell faster. However, I have learnt that time is precious and stress is bad. I do not wish to be the middleman to the tenant, the prospective buyer and the real estate negotiator (REN). I just want to let it go. Imagine the REN calls you at 4pm, in the middle of your meeting and said the tenant is not home even though he has promised to be home. He has called the tenant but no one picks up. What do you want to do now? Call the tenant? If he picks up and gives you a seemingly valid reason, do you then want to talk to the prospective buyer and ask him to come again tomorrow? Are you sure? If he does not pick up, do you want to call the REN and ask him to wait? Or Leave? STRESSFUL…. Well, this is just me. I am very sure there are others with a better way to solve these issues.

Happy selling your home minus the stress.

Written on 6 May 2017
Next suggested article: You may not get good tenants all the time, but still proceed

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