Frequently Asked Questions

Top 5 Questions and Answers

1. Is this company legit / should I trust them?

a. We would of course say yes but we understand the question. Ultimately this is a question you have to answer for yourself but we have spent a great deal of time creating raving fans and free content. The lease option (aka rent to own) market has both good and bad apples. We claim to be a good apple, but who wouldn’t?

b. We believe in full transparency. We are small. We are trying to help around 30 people this year. That’s it. Someday we may help 1000’s of people but for right now we want to serve our existing customers and focus on a select few home buyers that really are a good fit.

c. Can you trust us? Perhaps the best way to answer this question is to ask our customers. We would be happy to give you names or numbers of people who have worked with us. In the meantime, you can check for yourself through:

i. Reviews

1. Google reviews

2. YouTube testimonials

ii. Educational content we have created

1. Preapproved Podcast

2. YouTube Channel

3. Facebook Page

4. 5 Tips to Avoid Scams

d. Want to meet the founders of Home Equity Partner? Here is a short video

e. What is Home Equity Partners? Video Link

2. How does it work exactly?

a. 9-step process.

i. Here is a document outlining the process. PDF

ii. Here is a YouTube video talking through the PDF. Short Video

3. How much does it cost / Will I be approved?

a. Here is a YouTube video explaining the monthly and expected down payment costs. Short Video

b. We approve 95% of applicants. Estimated monthly payments and deposits can be calculated here.

4. Is getting a home through Home Equity Partner right for me?

a. Here is a 1 Page Overview that summarizes who this is for / not for.

b. Still don’t know? Here is special podcast episode debating renting vs lease option vs owning.

c. We also cater to “unique” situations. Examples are:

i. I have lots of equity but no cash

ii. I need to close in 10 days because my bank “underwriter” decided to cancel approval at the last minute

5. How do I get started to find my pre-approval home price amount?

a. Short Video. Walking through the application process.

b. Application instructions: We use a trusted 3rd party Tenant Screening Service called Landlord Tenant-Services to keep information confidential. They will pull credit but should not impact your score by more than 4-6 points.

i. Click this link: LTS Application for Home Equity Partners 

   Ii. Tips

1. Rent amount = desired monthly payment

2. No need to complete address

Other Frequently Asked Questions

Will I qualify?

Five things we look at:

  1. Do you have a sizable down payment?
  2. Can you afford the home?
  3. What is your past rental/criminal history
  4. Where is the property located
  5. Credit score (less important)

We approve 95% of applicants.

What does rent to own all cover?

Our definition of rent to own covers two major categories: 

     1) Lease with an option to buy (lease option) 

     2) Contract for Deed 

Can you rent to own a house without a down payment?

It is possible but not very likely.

Are rent to own homes real?

Yes. Be careful though, not all companies are created equal. It may be extremely difficult to find existing rent-to-own homes, but they are available in all 50 states. As of now there does not appear to be a single good resource for rent to own homes. We are trying to change that. The most common are existing “for sale by owner” (FSBO) listings that may be open to rent-to-own, otherwise you will need to find a specific rental property on Zillow, Facebook, or Craigslist specifically stating rent to own availability for existing inventory. If you don’t see anything you like, we are a good option if you want more options.

What is a lease-option-to-buy?

You rent the home with the exclusive option to buy it. You are not obligated to purchase the home but have until the end of the contract term to decide. This is called the lease expiration date. The owner cannot sell it to anyone else as you have control over the decision to buy or sell the home first unless a party breaks the lease agreements.

How is the deal structured?

Two ways:

  1. Lease Option – sometime called rent-to-own, lease to buy, lease to own, lease purchase, rent to buy, or L/O. In this case, two agreements will be signed (lease agreement and option agreement)
  2. Contract for Deed -Sometimes called land contract or deed of trust is a single contract for deed document. This is signed and is a true sale of the home.

What’s my plan to prepare for the purchase?

We always recommend trying to exhaust all resources to get a bank loan first. If you have been denied or just can’t quite pull it off in time, that is where Home Equity Partners can help.

If you are currently renting or looking for a rent to own home, the biggest factors will be getting your financial house in order via saving for a down payment and ensuring you make at least 3 times your expected monthly payment. 

Additionally, we recommend visiting with The Village Family Service Center in Fargo ND (they also offer online consultations) for debt, credit, and money consultation. We are not affiliated with The Village but believe they truly help people and are a great non-profit.

Who’s responsible for what?

In most cases you act as the homeowner. Just like if you got a loan from a bank, the bank would not fix a toilet or a door knob. You have the pros/cons that go with home ownership. You get to fix things your way, make improvements that you want, and address any home issues as they come up. This is why we recommend an inspection be done on all properties prior to moving in so you are fully aware of age, condition, and likely future repairs for the home you choose.

Do I need a home inspection?

Yes. An inspection is the safest way to ensure you will be protected and understand exactly what kind of home you are buying. Similar to a regular bank financed property and purchase agreement, an inspection is a choice but is always recommended.

Do I get my deposit back?

Any down payment or deposit you put down on the home goes towards the final purchase of the home. All the money is applied to the agreed upon sale price of the home. There is the rare situation in the event you no longer wish to purchase the home, your deposit is forfeited. The deposit is a key piece in being able to successfully own a home. We also stand buy our guarantee that we will not keep any deposit unless you get a home.

What's the difference between Lease-Option vs. Lease-Purchase?

Lease Option gives you the “option” to buy the home whereas a Lease-Purchase is a contract to purchase home at an agreed upon later date.  One has more flexibility while the other is more concrete.

How much of rent goes towards the purchase of the house?

This varies by property but typically 10-20% of payments are received back as principal pay-down or credits on final purchase.

How long can I rent before I can buy the house?

We usually set 1-5 years as the standard but have gone up to 30 years.

What happens if I can’t purchase the house at the end of the lease?

Two optons:

  1. Walk away and lose deposit and credits built up
  2. Sell the home and option to someone else.  This is recommended as you could possibly recoup the equity you have built in the property over the years.

Who is responsible for maintenance?

You are. You act the homeowner.

Do I need a realtor to find a home?

You do not, however, since you are not paying any realtor fees, we would strongly recommend it as it may make the home shopping experience more positive.

Do I need homeowners or renters insurance?

If you are doing a lease option, it is highly recommended that you carry renters insurance.

If you are doing a contract for deed, you will be required to carry homeowners insurance.

Are rent to own homes more expensive?

In general yes. You are paying a premium so that part of your rent goes towards building equity.

Don't Wait Any Longer.
Let Us Help You Purchase Your Dream Home Today!

Many people struggle to buy their first home because they cannot qualify for a bank loan. We raise private capital to buy homes for people so that they can finally become a homeowner. Typically this is a 1-5 year bridge that allows you to act like a homeowner while you work to obtain a bank loan.  

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Many people struggle to buy their first home because they cannot qualify for a bank loan. We raise private capital to buy homes for people so that they can finally become a homeowner. Typically this is a 1-5 year bridge that allows you to act like a homeowner while you work to obtain a bank loan.  

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