What is a Lease Option and How do You Use it to Sell Your House in Framingham?

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Selling a house in Framingham, Massachusetts, can be a challenging and time-consuming process. Many homeowners struggle to find the right buyer or secure a fair price for their property. However, one innovative strategy that can make the selling process more flexible and potentially profitable is a lease option. In this article, we will explore what a lease option is and how you can use it to sell your house in Framingham.

Understanding Lease Options

A lease option, also known as a rent-to-own or lease-to-own agreement, is a real estate arrangement that combines elements of both renting and selling. In a lease option, a homeowner allows a potential buyer (often referred to as the tenant-buyer) to lease the property for a specified period, typically one to three years. During this lease period, the tenant-buyer has the option, but not the obligation, to purchase the property at a predetermined price, typically fixed at the beginning of the agreement.

How a Lease Option Works

  1. Agreement Negotiation: To begin the process of using a lease option to sell your house in Framingham, you will first need to find a potential tenant-buyer. This may involve advertising your property as available for lease with an option to buy. Once you find a candidate, you will negotiate the terms of the lease option agreement, including the purchase price, lease duration, and any upfront option fee.
  2. Lease Agreement: The tenant-buyer will enter into a lease agreement with you, just like in a traditional rental situation. This agreement outlines the terms of the lease, such as the monthly rent amount, responsibilities for maintenance and repairs, and the lease duration.
  3. Option Fee: As part of the lease option agreement, the tenant-buyer typically pays an upfront option fee. This fee is non-refundable and serves as consideration for the exclusive right to purchase the property within the specified time frame.
  4. Monthly Rent: The tenant-buyer will pay monthly rent, just like any other tenant. However, a portion of the monthly rent may be credited toward the purchase price of the property, depending on the terms of the agreement.
  5. Purchase Decision: At the end of the lease period, the tenant-buyer must decide whether to exercise their option to purchase the property. If they choose to buy, the agreed-upon purchase price is used for the transaction. If they decide not to buy, the lease agreement ends, and the property remains with the seller.

Benefits of Using a Lease Option to Sell Your House in Framingham

  1. Potential for Higher Sale Price: With a lease option, you can often secure a higher sale price for your property, as the tenant-buyer may be willing to pay a premium for the option to purchase in the future.
  2. Monthly Rent Income: You’ll continue to receive monthly rent payments from the tenant-buyer, providing you with a steady income stream.
  3. Flexible Timeline: Lease options offer flexibility, allowing you to sell your house at a time that works best for you, even if market conditions are not ideal.
  4. Reduced Holding Costs: Since the tenant-buyer is responsible for the property during the lease period, you can potentially reduce your maintenance and carrying costs.

Challenges of Using a Lease Option

While lease options offer several benefits, they also come with some challenges:

  1. Potential Tenant-Buyer Default:One of the significant challenges associated with lease options is the risk of tenant-buyer default. While lease options provide you with a potential buyer who has expressed interest in purchasing your property, there’s no guarantee they will follow through. Tenant-buyers may default on the agreement for various reasons, such as changes in personal circumstances, inability to secure financing, or dissatisfaction with the property’s condition. When a tenant-buyer defaults, you may need to go through the process of finding a new tenant-buyer, which can entail additional marketing and screening costs, as well as potential vacancy periods during the transition.Furthermore, if tenant-buyers default on their monthly rent payments, it can disrupt your rental income and lead to financial stress. To mitigate this risk, it’s essential to conduct thorough background checks and financial assessments on potential tenant-buyers and ensure that the lease option agreement contains clear terms and consequences for default.
  2. Market Fluctuations:Another challenge of using a lease option is the potential impact of market fluctuations on the predetermined purchase price. When you set the purchase price at the beginning of the lease option agreement, you are making a projection of the property’s future value. However, the real estate market can be unpredictable, and property values may fluctuate over time. If the market experiences a significant downturn during the lease period, the agreed-upon purchase price may no longer reflect the property’s current market value.In such situations, you may face a dilemma where the tenant-buyer expects to buy the property at the predetermined price, but its actual market value has decreased. This can lead to negotiations and potential disputes. To address this challenge, some lease option agreements include provisions that allow for periodic appraisals and adjustments to the purchase price to account for market changes. However, these adjustments can be complex and may require agreement from both parties.
  3. Legal Complexity:Lease option agreements can be legally complex and require careful drafting to protect the interests of both the seller and the tenant-buyer. The legal intricacies involved in creating a lease option agreement can be a challenge for sellers, as they must ensure that the contract complies with local real estate laws and regulations. Failing to do so can lead to legal disputes and complications down the road.To address this challenge, it’s advisable to work with a qualified real estate attorney who can help draft a well-structured and legally sound lease option agreement. The attorney can ensure that the contract covers essential aspects such as lease terms, purchase price, responsibilities for maintenance and repairs, dispute resolution procedures, and any state-specific requirements.


A lease option, when facilitated by Custom Realty Solutions, LLC, offers Framingham homeowners a versatile and potentially lucrative method for selling their properties. While it provides advantages like higher sale prices, consistent rental income, and flexibility, it’s essential to acknowledge and address the challenges involved, including tenant-buyer default risk, market fluctuations, and legal complexities. With the right guidance and expertise from Custom Realty Solutions, LLC, homeowners can effectively navigate these challenges and leverage the benefits of the lease option strategy in the Framingham real estate market.