Is this a normal request from seller?

6 Replies

This is my first rental property so obviously I am a newbie and just starting out. I appreciate all the inputs from you all.

I am buying this property which has a tenant in it. The owner sent me a lease agreement which was signed about 8 years ago and the lease is month-to-month basis. However, it does not spell out in the lease and it is per the seller's words. I want to have the tenant sign the estoppel agreement to verify the validity of the seller's claims but the seller adamantly doesn't want me to talk to the tenant at all. He requested that all questions direct to the listing agent and he doesn't want either me or my agent to talk to the tenant. 

Is this normal? should I go ahead with the deal? what should I do to protect myself? 

Thank you in advance!


Sounds like the owner doesn't want the tenant to know the property is being sold. Will the owner allow the listing agent to contact the tenant? If so, maybe they can verify if a lease exists.

Also in my humble non-lawyer opinion, if the lease is month-to-month then you certainly have the right if you purchase to make the lease whatever you and the tenant agree to (in writing). 8 years is a good track record if they are a paying tenant and not just the owners friend/family member that they didn't want to deal with (happened to me, I sold the house to get rid of them).

I'd ask the LA to meet the tenant to sign that. When I am a LA on tenanted property I always try to have an open line of communication with the tenants, makes it easier. Everyone is different but having the estoppel signed is important especially with an 8 year old tenant. In 8 years a lot can be verbally agreed and said so you need written proof

Tenant says no we’e paying half that much in rent. Don’t forget I get a check for half my rent back when I move out. It’s month to month but the rent can’t be raised until I move out and I get a year’s notice. I’ll want my $10,000 security deposit back as well. 

You absolutely need every term and specification spelled out. 

Ask the landlord to have the tenants sign YOUR lease with him still as the landlord, but the lease has the usual transferable clause in it.  Then you get a copy at closing and the tenants still won't know its being sold.

Thank you guys for all the inputs. I insisted to talk to the tenant and have him signed the estoppel but the seller decided to release the contract. Well … I guess there must be something between them. Anyway, thanks again everyone for your help!