Buying or Selling a Home/Occupancy


Hi Kathryn,
I was hoping you could settle a debate my husband and I are having. On our purchase contract is says the seller has 14 days to get out after closing.  If the seller is out sooner than that (currently moving when we close tomorrow), can we occupy sooner than the 14 days? I believe we can as soon as she is done but he thinks we have to wait to the 14th day. Can you please clarify for us?

Hi Lyndsey.

Thank you for your question. As real estate contracts are always a bit tricky to be certain about, it's great you are asking! I'm assuming the seller has a rent-back agreement with you. This would also mean there should be a separate agreement explaining how the day by day rent should work. The reason I'm assuming there this agreement is in place is because once escrow closes - defined as when all funds have been distributed to all parties as delineated by the Purchase Agreement and any additional instructions to the escrow agent - AND the title has been recorded with the County, the property belongs to the new buyers.

If the seller has 14 days to vacate after the title has been recorded, this will mean she will be responsible for rent to you, unless you have decided to let her live there for free, on a day to day basis. If she is there for only 3 days after recording, and pays you for those three days, terrific! You can move into your home. If the Agreement calls for her to pay rent in advance for the full 14 days, then the home is still technically in her possession and you cannot move in. If the payment was made in advance, you could refund her for the days she does not live there and agree, in writing, that all ties have been severed.

Please let me know if that doesn't answer your question/s. And, Congratulations to you and yours on your new home, Lyndsey!

Buying or Selling a Home

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Kathryn Hisert; Realtor


Everyone deserves an answer! My rounded background will provide you with information beyond ‘just’ buying and selling. I can answer questions regarding short sales, foreclosures, deed-in-lieu, home staging, vintage home related concerns, most mortgage related questions, and divorcing couples’ housing options. I am a research oriented individual who strongly believes in connecting all the dots and providing as much, or as little, information and communication my clients want or need. My expertise is in San Diego and Santa Clara Counties.


After 25+ years in the Financial industry, Sales and Marketing, I came to the real estate industry as a mortgage loan agent. From 2002 to 2010 I was my clients' Realtor and loan agent. Since 06/10 I have been strictly a Realtor.

N. San Diego County Assoc. of Realtors California Assoc. of Realtors National Association of Realtors

CDPE (Certified Distressed Property Expert) CREDS (Certified Real Estate Divorce Specialist)

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