Question: How Long Can I Stay in a Home After the Sale? UPDATED 5/16
Answer: It depends. The length of your stay in a home after a home closing is usually determined by the terms of the Purchase Agreement contract that was signed. Today, it is not unusual for the contract to dictate that you vacate the premises when you receive your check. The buyers often want to get into their new home as quickly as possible and since they are now paying for the home, would like to have immediate access.
And then there’s the issue of liability. Your Home Owner’s Insurance typically terminates when the home changes hands and the new owner’s insurance kicks into effect. If an incident occurs during the period of time a previous home owner continues to occupy the property, there could be a question about whose insurance takes care of any unforseen issues.
However, it is still not unusual in West Michigan for home owners to remain in the residence after the sale for a period of time. This can range from days and weeks to longer. In West Michigan, most contracts will require some sort of rental provision for this time to be paid to the new home owner. The rent is often negotiated at close and can be demanded in advance. In the event that a previous home owner elects to stay inside the home AFTER the rental period, the Purchase Agreement may exact penalties. At this point, it becomes a more serious issue, because in effect, the previous owner in essence becomes a squatter and may require legal eviction. This is a situation that requires counsel and it would be prudent to consider legal assistance.
About the FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions Series)
This series is designed to answer questions that we hear clients asking over and over again. Perhaps, you’ve wondered about some of these questions yourself. While this is not intended to be an exhaustive explanation on the subject being discussed, it is our hope that these short blogs will provide helpful insights and may encourage you to explore further. Please feel free to contact us by phone or e-mail with any questions.