How to get Rid of a Tenant Before Selling a House

When it’s time to sell a home, it’s natural to want everything to go smoothly. Unfortunately, getting rid of a tenant before a sale can be problematic. Your best bet is to take proactive steps to minimize this issue before it becomes a huge problem. If you are trying to sell a house you are renting to a tenant, here are some great tips on how to solve this irritating problem.

Offer a “Cash for Keys” Agreement to Get Rid of a Tenant Before a Sale

If you are having difficulty getting your tenant to move out, consider entering into a cash-for-keys agreement. This aptly named agreement is one in which you offer your tenant an agreed-upon amount of money in exchange for the keys to your home. Plus the assurance that the tenant will walk away and never return. If you decide to go this route, get the entire agreement in writing and make sure the tenant signs the contract. Also, as soon as you get the keys back from the tenant, change the locks immediately so there is no way for the tenant to get back in.

Offer Help

Instead of approaching a stubborn tenant from a combative standpoint, be reasonable and accommodating instead. Consider the possibility that the tenant is unwilling to leave the premises because of a roadblock that may be standing in the way. Although you are not going to relieve the tenant of the responsibility to pay the rent, there are a few ways you can help without it hitting you in your pocketbook. If you have access to moving trucks or other equipment, lend them to your tenant to make the move easier. Also, give the tenant the contact information of any landlords you know of who are looking to rent out property.

If there is another type of issue that is preventing the tenant from moving out, offer any assistance you can. When you approach your tenant with a positive and helpful attitude, you can make the situation more comfortable. Then the tenant will likely be more willing to leave without an argument.


If your tenant will not listen to reason and simply refuses to leave the premises, you may need to start the eviction process. Eviction should be reserved as your final option. It can be a lengthy process that requires legal intervention. But the choice is there for those who need it. If you find yourself in a position where you need to evict your tenant, follow these guidelines:

  • Understand the laws regarding eviction. Eviction laws vary from state to state. Before you begin the eviction process, it’s crucial to know exactly what you are getting into and what your responsibilities are. You don’t want to lose the case because you were not aware of a minor detail that should not have been overlooked. For more information on evicting a tenant in Indiana, click here.
  • Have a valid reason behind your actions. You cannot simply evict a tenant without reason. So, before you begin the process, make sure you can back up your actions with valid reasons for them. For which you have documented proof. If your tenant has not committed any acts that are worthy of eviction, you may need to choose another route.
  • Try reasoning with your tenant. No one wants to go through the eviction process. Before you officially file papers for the eviction, have one last conversation with your tenant. Be fair but stern when you state your case. Have the conversation in a public place to reduce the likelihood of an ugly scene.
  • If your tenant continues to be uncooperative, then it’s time to present the tenant with a formal notice of eviction. When you give the notice to your tenant, follow the procedures set by your state exactly. Plus be sure to give adequate notification of the eviction.
  • File your eviction notice with your local courthouse and pay any necessary fees.
  • Attend the court hearing.

Sell the House with the Tenant in it

Depending on what is stated in your lease agreement, there is a good possibility that you have no legal recourse for getting rid of a tenant before a sale. If you are not able to get the tenant out of your house, you do have the right to sell the house with the tenant in it. In this case, the new homeowner will take on the responsibilities as a landlord, and you can walk away no questions asked.

If you are looking to sell your Indianapolis area house either with or without a tenant, Ben Buys Indy Houses can take it off your hands. We will buy your house as-is for cash with no hassles. The entire process can be done in under 30 days. Contact us today for more information.

How to get Rid of a Tenant Before Selling a House

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