For Sale… and Rent

From Newsday:

For sale (or for rent)
Some sellers trapped by slow sales are seeking renters for a short-term solution

In January, when retired psychologists Ben Schwartz, 77, and wife, Peppi, 76, put their Commack home of 44 years on the market for $649,000, it looked like a safe bet.

“Houses in Commack last year were at a premium,” Peppi Schwartz recalls. “We thought it would sell very quickly.”

Yet, through a dispiriting spring and summer, the house – a five-bedroom high-ranch with a duplex solarium and hot tub, a pool and separate professional office – didn’t move despite several price cuts.

So last month, the Schwartzes chose an alternative that may be cropping up more: They decided to rent their house. They’re still hoping to sell, at $499,000, but are now concentrating on marketing the house as a rental, at $3,500 a month.

With their turn toward the rental market, the Schwartzes may find themselves in growing company. While not everyone agrees, some Long Island real estate agents are reporting that an increasing number of would-be sellers, daunted by the cooling of the once-sizzling housing market, are offering their homes “for sale or rent,” or simply for rent.

The sale-to-rental approach “seems to be a trend now,” agrees Deborah Sande of Daniel Gale Sotheby’s International Realty in Huntington, who is marketing several of these houses. She says the sellers have come down in price, “but there’s a point where they want to stop. And they figure they’ll rent it and get an income from it, and when the market gets better, they’ll put it up for sale again.”

“If it’s a young couple and one of them gets the best job in America in California, you’ve got to go,” Wallace says. But “if they bought in the last two years and paid top dollar, with 5 or 10 percent down, the sale price of the house in this market may not cover what they owe the bank.” Such owners, she says, “would be more apt to rent” out their house than offer a painfully low price to choosy buyers.

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25 Responses to For Sale… and Rent

  1. here it comes says:

    yeah so now I want to RENT your condo for 3,00 0 a month? Greedy grubbers!! DROP YOUR PRICE OR LOSE IT ALL

  2. SAS says:


    lol, I like that one. I think we may see both rent & home values go down.


  3. Jaywalk says:

    I actually saw a place yesterday with a for sale sign on the lawn AND a for rent sign in the window. Oh, yeah, let me move into a rental that you plan to sell out from under me asap…

  4. SAS says:

    “I actually saw a place yesterday with a for sale sign on the lawn AND a for rent sign in the window”

    no shit?


  5. here it comes says:

    Yeah I’ve been seeing them near frankling twp somerset too. They want 3000 to 3500 for renting a busted up old house/shack! I’d rather get a 2 bedroom condo for 1400 at colony oaks

  6. SAS says:

    “I actually saw a place yesterday with a for sale sign on the lawn AND a for rent sign in the window”

    Thats when you know that person is desperate and underwater already.


  7. Lowball says:

    “We thought it would sell very quickly.”
    “marketing the house as a rental, at $3,500 a month.”
    ‘their Commack home for 44 years’ (soo, they’ve been around for a while), bought the shack for about 65K back in ’62, paid it off by mid’ 80’s, had some 1st hand Great Depression snuff and he’s a retired shrink..
    WOW! Greedy Ben & Peppi, it’s time to get yourselves some nice NAR sponsored shrink services.

  8. ck986 says:

    I think the rent they are expecting is a little too rich. The mortgage on $500K at 6.5% is not even $3,500. I dont know what home’s rent for out there, but a more reasonable rent sounds like 2,000. They should do a follow up in 3-6 months and see where these guys end up. I assume they will be sitting on an empty house and paying a ton in opportunity cost, taxes, and insurance. Just think $450M @5.5% would net them 6-12K in interest over 3-6 months, which is the same amount they will get from a renter once they come down to earth.

  9. hey I am for the idea of rent to own for the greedy grubbers however
    the nonsence about a small amount goes toward owning the home
    screw that. Lets say a home is listed at 500k and taxes are 8000/year

    500000/ 360 (30 years) = 1388.88 + 667 = 2054
    thats what u should pay
    Is it our fault you overpaid? Why would someone pay interest on an already over prced property
    I know people want the money up front but things dont work that way anymore so this is an alternative it will take longer to get but agleast you can get all the money your asking for
    But those greed sellers would look at this and say well i need to make more money so I will raise the price 100k
    This will not work for everyone and some people will say to charge interest, but than we are back to square 1 and you will be overpaying
    I laughed when i read the article just another greedy jidiot

    One last thing are I think the only resons some properties aree
    still moving is because people selling did not try to get a good deal on therew new place or they are living above there means
    Hey be smart next time and go ahead rent your overpriced property, to get what u sellers want it will take another 10+ years for it to maybe get back to these prices. Lifes a beach and than you get forclosed on hahahahaha

  10. Jay says:

    There is a lakefront house for sale in Mountain Lakes for $1.7M that you can rent for $4000. That’s not a bad deal considering the interest alone on a mortgage would be more than double the rent.

  11. waters says:

    The property tax is likely at least $2k a month also. Mountain Lakes property taxes are insane.

  12. Jamey says:

    I think some of you are mistaken: The houses are for rent; the actual signs that say “for rent” are for sale.

  13. BB says:

    A couple of months ago, there were 0 advertised homes for rent in Pompton Plains/Pequannock. Now there are 4 listed on MSN alone. 1 is 4 bed/2 bath for sale $379,000 or rent $2,500

  14. Jaywalk says:

    “I actually saw a place yesterday with a for sale sign on the lawn AND a for rent sign in the window”

    no shit?

    I shit you not.

    I think it was on Clifton Ave. in Clifton. It looked like a two-family.

    My point is that from a renter’s perspective, I would avoid a rental in a “for sale” property like the plague.

  15. Jay says:

    You’re right! – taxes are $27,159.

    $9500 interest plus $2260 taxes =
    $11,760 p/month pissed away…

    not including repairs & maint. plus major investment risk in a declining market.

    Is anyone going to pay $8,000 more p/month to own than rent for the psychological benefits? Good example of how ridiculous asking prices are.

  16. Andra says:

    Something’s always breaking down in a house; if its not one thing, its another. Imagine being a landlord and getting a call because the water pump is dead and you have to get it fixed and its the better part of $2000. How often is the rent going to be late? And so on. Just lower the price and sell it.

  17. Lindsey says:

    I’m late to the party, so can someone tell me what Commack is like. A 5br house with a hot tub and solarium sounds pretty good. In even a second or third tier town in Monmouth County the house would probably still be at $600K, in a top town (Rumson, Colts Neck) you’d be talking at least $700K.

  18. Arr Elle says:

    I’ve come across condos where the owners must have bought at the top peak of the market and has stated that they will not accept anything under a certain amount, at least this was told to my realtor by the Seller’s agent. LOL You go figure, now these seller’s expect us to save them???? Come and get real…

  19. SAS says:

    “Jamey Says”

    Aren’t you the Abe Linclon at Fords Theatre guy?

    lol, you have a good sense of humor.


  20. New Jersey says:

    What they fail to realize is that houses that were once rented, no matter what the condition are stigmatized and will sell for less than an identical owner occupied house.

    Don’t count on the tennants to maintain the pool, it will be a slime pond with broken mechanicals after they move out.

    Also, once tenants move out, the house, even if not damaged will need to be renovated again to get top dollar.

    Then, in the real world, there are gaps between tentants that no rent is collected, some tenants do not pay their rent, and you cannot hold on to security deposits for normal wear and tear like worn carpet, scuff marks on walls, leaks in plumbing, peeling walpaper, broken kitchen drawers, rotting wood etc. Also, if the tennats smoke or have a cat, consider the house permantly lower in value because many buyers can detect the presence of those odors years after they are gone and will not buy such houses.

    If you have to evict a tennant count on 4-6 months of no rent and possibly tens of thousands of dollars of damages.

    If the tenant decides to rent rooms to friends count on getting an animal house at the end of the lease.

    Finally, renting property is not a passive activity, if you don’t continue to mainain the house, the local government will get on you to do it, even if it is the renter’s fault.

  21. SAS says:

    New Jersey,

    Good points.


  22. Kim says:

    This POS house is for sale/rent
    It’s in a nice town, but surrounded by crappy-looking houses, on a main road with no street parking, and two houses down from a warehouse. The MLS listing says the price is “as is” due to moisture in the basement. WTF??? You would have to be an idiot to purchase this house for anything over $150K.

  23. pesche22 says:

    Kim, it is a POS.

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