Tenant wants to rent house now and move in 3 mont ( New Jwesey)

14 Replies


I have a group of students that they plan to move in August but they want to secure the house, and start paying from May 1st

Is there any potential problem doing this in New Jersey?

Usually not. Sometimes vacant houses are a target for vandalism. I would suggest to the students find someone to stay there over the summer for really cheap to "watch" the place.

Thank you Bill

Actually ,they just told me that they are baseball players

Thank you Dawn

I am asking because NJ is special (You cannot demand more that 1 1/2 month for deposit) I dunno how would be the outcome, if they pay me deposit, plus 1st month rent, and then , next month they changed their minds ( or because they find a better house or whatever ) and stop paying

rent is $2500

@Chai Sag , you may want to talk with your insurance agent about getting a vacancy policy. They are a little pricey, but you can get them for the short term. I've heard of vandalism claims being denied because the existing policy didn't cover vacancy for more than 30 days. Just make sure you're covered!

A vacant house can be a target for vandalism but that is their prerogative when they move in as long as they are paying the rent. I would suggest that the house have some signs of activity. If they don't move in see if there is someone who would park in the driveway, enter the house at least weekly and potentially see if they will move some furniture in. It could depend on your area but these are all safeguards against serious vandalism or even just mischief seekers. Who will be mowing the lawn? Also might suggest they get some of those timer lights.

@Chai Sag I would not treat it any different than if they moved in. Sign the lease take the deposit and 1st month rent, given them the keys, and collect rent each month like normal. If they choose to wait 3 months to occupy that's their deal. Since it's rented I would argue that it's not vacant from the insurance perspective.

If they find something better, then they pay your early termination fee (ETF) and re-rent. You have a lease and it's a binding contract that is enforceable in a court of law. You have a lease and they have the keys, end of story.

What college in NJ do you own by? If you don't mind me asking

@Sara Liskey thank you .Important point. House is in nice area, but you never know

Colleen ,Thank you

@Bill S Thank you, I don't have early termination Fee in the contract, I think that in NJ if a tenant wants to move before the lease expires, landlord should look for another tenant (and 1st tenant pays until 2nd tenant starts paying)

@Bob Derasmo .Montclair

@Chai Sag type the @ symbol and the first three letter of the persons name and it will pop up in the bottom of the window. Select it from there and you have the referenced link in you message.

I know NJ is very tenant friendly but still I would be surprised if NJ doesn't allow for an early termination fee (ETF). I have not heard of an ETF being illegal anywhere. It's much better than just letting them walk and while you go through the brain damage of finding new tenants without any compensation.

No problems starting them off as long as they pay every month even if they are not living there. My son has the same situation at his college where the landlords make them pay starting in May but they know no college students will be there unless they are going to summer school. They have to do that or they lose out on the rent during each summer. They also make the parents co-sign so I think you must do that to help protect yourself.

@Ibrahim S of course,thank you .Do you know if ETF is legal in NJ?

@Bill S. I agree with you, I would like to know if ETF works in NJ

How much would you put , like 4 months of rent?

@Mark Langdon Thank you

@Chai Sag most people use an ETF of about a month's rent. I use just under two months rent. For me if rent is $1,000 per month my ETF is $1,950. Tenants have a really hard time forking over more than 2 month rent in my estimation. ETF should be enough to make me smile but not so much that tenants refuse to pay. Here I can easily re-rent in two weeks. I figure, even if it takes a month, the extra month's rent more than compensates me for my time in re-renting. Again you need to make the amount something they will actually pay otherwise you are left trying to collect which is an iffy proposition at best.

I explain that the ETF is like a cell phone contract.