Rent to own is different than a lease option, which gives you the option to buy a place you were renting before it goes on the market, but there’s no obligation to do so. When you rent to own you usually make a deposit, which can also be called “option money,” and the contract stipulates your obligation to buy. The deposit goes to the seller and is a non-refundable fee.

A lease option is a contract between the potential tenant and the seller that specifies the agreement to rent the property for a set amount of time and it comes with a right to refuse option that gives the potential buyer a way out at the end of the contract's termination date. It should include how much the rent is, when it is due, fees, penalties, security deposit amounts, pets, smoking requirements, parking, maintenance responsibilities, and utilities. The main difference between a traditional lease and a rent-to-own lease is deciding who will pay for upkeep and maintenance. In a traditional lease, a landlord would take care of all of these things. With RTO, the tenant might be responsible. It should also clearly specify that any rent credits or any amount of money that the tenant has had set in escrow becomes forfeit if they choose not to purchase the home. This releases them from their obligation to purchase the property, and the seller is responsible for finding a new tenant.
Housing Statistics In this city, the average home sale price is $186,276, while the median home sale price is $142,500. In addition, 2,487 real estate sales were completed in North Las Vegas over the course of roughly a month. Another point of interest for buyers is how the 2007-2011 American Community Survey notes that the city's total vacancy rate is 12.4%. According to the same report, the homeowner vacancy rate is roughly 2.4%, while renter vacancies sit at 7.8%. These are important factors to consider when looking at rent to own options.
Both renters and sellers need to be very clear about the contract they draw up before they agree to this arrangement. Renting-to-own has advantages and disadvantages for both parties. Sellers who have already bought a new house will have relief from paying two mortgages at once, and in a slow housing market with many homes for sale, this may be their best option. Buyers who can't yet afford a house may be able to get one more quickly.
 You can lose your entire investment if you miss a payment or two. With mortgages, if you miss a payment, your credit score drops and you don’t lose any of the equity on the home. With a rent to own contract, you can forfeit all of the money you’ve put toward the home.If the houses in your area start to decline in value, you risk having bought a home that isn’t worth as much as you thought.
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Market Timing. One of the biggest investment flaws people have is projecting the recent past trends indefinitely into the future. This is part of why people crowd into markets near the top & sell out of fear near the bottom. Institutional investors tend to be more pragmatic & experienced at investing than most individuals are. Those who have liquid cash during recessions are able to flip the cost structure by buying homes at rock bottom prices. This is why hedge funds bought large portions of the residential housing supply in Phoenix and other cities after prices sometimes fell by more than 50%. Blackstone acquired 40,000 homes and created derivative products based on the rental payments.
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Location. Your location will play a vital role in whether you choose to rent, buy, or rent to own your next home. In some areas, you may see rent prices that are double and triple the typical rate in the area because of demand. So purchasing a home or finding an RTO option may be a smarter option. It all depends on what you're willing to pay, and what you can afford.

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The rent-to-own market segment of the real estate industry is not particularly regulated, nor are these transactions carefully tracked. However, a number of horror stories have made their way into the headlines. Most pertain to landlords who took advantage of low-income or unsuspecting renters by structuring the agreements to make tenants responsible for maintenance and repairs, but not disclosing to the renters that the homes were riddled with code violations.
Think about it, what if you were able to pick an area that you would like to live in but may not be able to afford right now or just no ready to make that big purchase. With the Rent to Own process, you can get into that house without the 30 year commitment. You can even have a portion of the rent credited to the sales price or closing costs, that’s instance equity at closing for you.

It’s important to note that there are different types of rent-to-own contracts, with some being more consumer friendly and flexible than others. Lease-option contracts give you the right – but not the obligation – to buy the home when the lease expires. If you decide not to buy the property at the end of the lease, the option simply expires, and you can walk away without any obligation to continue paying rent or to buy.

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Option Consideration. With these types of contracts, the potential buyer may have to pay the seller a one-time deposit. This deposit is called an option consideration or option money, and it usually isn't refundable. This deposit gives the potential buyer a right to purchase the property, and not an obligation. The size of the option consideration isn't set, and it can be negotiated by the buyer and seller. Traditionally, it is between 2% and 7.5% with 3% being a popular option of the purchase price. You may also negotiate to have the consideration price onto the purchase price when you close the deal and buy the property.
Repairs and maintenance: This is where many landlords get hung up with rent-to-own properties. Some forget to include language in the agreement about which party is responsible for R&M. This can cause major, deal-threatening disputes down the road. Be explicit about who is responsible for what, and to what extent. For instance, maybe a tenant is responsible for all routine repairs and property maintenance up to a certain dollar amount each year, at which point the costs are covered by the owner (or shared between both parties). Capital improvement costs should be included in this provision.
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Rent-to-own agreements should specify when and how the home’s purchase price is determined. In some cases, you and the seller will agree on a purchase price when the contract is signed – often at a higher price than the current market value. In other situations, the price is determined when the lease expires, based on the property's then-current market value. Many buyers prefer to “lock in” the purchase price, especially in markets where home prices are trending up.

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If you have a lease-purchase contract, you may be legally obligated to buy the property when the lease expires. This can be problematic for many reasons, especially if you aren’t able to secure a mortgage. Lease-option contracts are almost always preferable to lease-purchase contracts because they offer more flexibility and you don’t risk getting sued if you are unwilling or unable to buy the home when the lease expires.
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Browse our extensive database of listings to find homes in your area. You can click on a listing to view more information about the listing as well as important neighborhood data, nearest schools and more. To access pricing information and to obtain the contact information of the owner, you can register for a trial membership. Our Trial Membership gives you access to many additional features, and we are always working on improving our listings data. You can cancel your membership at any time – simply contact us by email or phone for assistance, and we will be happy to help!
This will ensure that you are not getting into a contract to purchase a home that you can’t afford. It’s important to give yourself a decent head start on the mortgage loan application process to see where you stand, as well as give yourself time to repair and/or fix any credit-related issues that might prevent you from obtaining a home loan. That’s because you need to be ready with an approved mortgage loan on the date specified in the rent-to-own contract.
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Rent-to-own homes will typically cost a bit more than the fair market value of other home rentals in the area. That’s because a portion of the monthly rent-to-own payment will be designated as a “rent credit” -- up to 20 percent of the monthly amount due -- will go toward the purchase of the home when the agreed-upon term expires. It’s important to make these monthly rent-to-own payments on time and as scheduled.
For instance, a section of the downtown area known as the Las Vegas Art District encourages creativity in the arts. The Las Vegas National History Museum presents the smarter side of the city, and many students are securing their education from the University of Nevada’s Las Vegas campus. There are also some alternative educational options in the city, including the Las Vegas Army Air Corps Gunnery School and the Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts.
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