Temporary Lease Agreement ???

I have an offer accepted on a house where the owner is wanting to sign a temporary lease agreement to stay in the house two days after closing. This is a house we are buying to live in ourselves. We are being told that they house is not worth what they owe and the lender is selling it as a short sale. The house is in a mess and we need them out asap so we can start fixing it up and move into it. We are concerned about what we have to deal with if they do not move out on the agreed upon date. From my understanding, I would have to evict them and wait for court proceedings and who knows how much it will cost and how long. I know the lease says they are responsible for cost but if they have no money they wont be paying anything.
Does anyone have any advise on how to handle this? What are my dangers? How does this process work? Is it safe?
The realtor assures me that this happens all the time and it is nothing to worry about. Any advice is appreciated.


About the only thing you can do is ask for a deposit to cover any damage etc. You could move the close date two days later. You could just take their word and hope they are honest. Foreclosures etc can be really tricky with folks minds. Loosing jobs etc can too be fustrating. Show compassion but concern for your position when asking for deposit . Sounds like they will get no money at closing. Another suggeastion is to offer to help pay some of their expenses if they move out quietly and on time and do no damage. Tough call but all part of the game. Eviction can take time and loss of money. Hope it works out OK. Wish I had a magic answer.

Good luck and thank you,
Ted P. Stokely Jr
11505 Sw Oaks
Austin, Texas 78737
512-301-9171 home
512-587-6177 mobile

Write in the contract that everyday they stay in the home you will charge them an XXXX amount of money.

Another optiom is to delay closing 2 days. That way you are not in the awkward position of evicting thyem and lose time & money.

David Garcia

You don’t state whether the owners are getting any cash from the deal. Since the lender is selling via short sale, I might assume they are not getting any cash (but we all know what happens when you assume). If they are not receiving any cash, there is no reason why they should stay in the home after closing. If they are receiving cash from the sale, I would still try to find another solution other than the temporary lease. Sounds like they may be preforeclosure?? If so, they may be desperate and you may be in for a few days, weeks or months of frustration and loss and you are right to be concerned about it. You, not the realtor nor the seller, are the one risking your time, money and peace of mind.

I highly suggest you find out the reason why they feel they need two extra days and then look for another solution.


  1. Just because it’s done all the time does not mean there’s nothing to be concerned about. And…
  2. Be wary of anything realtors tell you in the interest of closing a deal.

I have done temp leases similar to this in the past, but only in situations where I had little at risk (low,low purchase price aka junker) or a sizable profit. You may want to look at these factors as well when you make your decision. You are also correct that although you may have penalties in the lease for staying past the move-out date, you will not likely collect on them. That said, if you do agree to the temp lease, do be sure and put those penalties/protections in the lease, they may weigh on the sellers mind and may make a difference. When I have done this in the past, I also got a release stating something to the effect that the sellers no longer have a legal claim to the property and automatically surrender a judgement in a forcible detainer action (eviction).

Just some food for thought,

Troy M

First, if you have an offer accepted in writing, you have a contract. If this “Seller lease-back” was not part of the contract, the other agent can wish until they’re blue in the face, but they can’t change anything unless you as the Buyer agree. If you do not have a signed contract form, you are still in negotiations. You’ll then have to determine just how motivated the Seller/Lender are. Really, the Seller doesn’t have much leverage since they’re going to make this work or they’re going to the courthouse steps.

If you’re under contract, once the loan if funded, you’re the owners of the property. If you think the Sellers will try to stay anyway, make sure you let the title company know you want separate closings. Then sign your documents prior to the Sellers signing. As the Seller’s are still trying to make their way back from closing, have your locksmith at the property changing the locks. Just make sure your lender will fund either at the table or within minutes afterward.

You can also refuse to sign the title company’s disclosure regarding the “Waiver of Inspection.” This then puts the onus on the title company to either inspect the property (since they will have liability) or make the Sellers sign an affidavit stating the house is not being occupied by renters or anyone else.

Just be wary of what the Agent tells you, especially if he/she doesn’t represent you. Believe me, the majority of them have a very limited understanding of contract forms, which is why TREC only lets agents fill in the blanks for the most part. Good Luck and let us know how it turns out.