CHRE Mailbag #4

Posted by Copper Hill on Wed, Feb 9, '22

We’re back! And we’ve got another Copper Hill mailbag for you! As we always do every so often, we take questions from the general public on various real estate topics, and we answer them. So without further ado, let’s dig into the mailbag.


I saw a rental I loved, and I can see myself living there long term. Can I sign a lease for longer than a year?

Theoretically, yes; in Pennsylvania, tenants can legally sign a standard lease for up to three years for a residential unit. However, this is not always the best idea, and most landlords are hesitant to rent out a single unit for that amount of time. But like most things, the solution is somewhere in the middle.

Many leases will include an auto-renew clause, wherein unless the tenant notifies the landlord in writing that they want to move out, the lease will continue past the initial term length (usually one year) on a month-to-month basis. In terms of initial lease length, the terms can vary. If you’re truly committed to the place, you can ask your realtor about negotiating a longer initial lease length term in exchange for a monthly discount. Some landlords will consider 15, 18, and even 24 month initial lease terms with a slight price concession in order to guarantee a strong return for a longer amount of time.


Do I have to do an inspection on a home that I’m purchasing?

Doing an inspection can never hurt you, especially if you’re planning on living in the property immediately. The only time you should consider skipping the inspection is if you’re truly planning to tear the entire place to the ground. In many cases involving gut projects and renovation properties, the seller will offer a concession in order for the buyer to speed up the transaction. Even if you’ve waived your right to stop the transaction based on the results of an inspection, you’re still able to get one done for your own personal knowledge. In short, getting an inspection never hurts.


I’ve recently flipped a house, and I’m going to market. Is staging my property worth it?

Anecdotally, we’d certainly recommend staging your property for best results on the open market. When hosting an open house, the point is to allow prospective buyers to take their time and feel comfortable moving through and about the house, imagining themselves in the property as if it were their own. Staging the property takes it from an empty building to truly feeling like a home; for best results in selling a home, it’s best to go ahead and make it feel like home.

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