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We want to buy a multifamily home as our primary residence, but all the units are currently rented.

Wallington, NJ |

My wife and I have found a great little multifamily home that will fit our financial situation perfectly. We want to use this as our primary residence both as a practical means and also to keep in line with FHA loan requirements. This is not just going to be an investment home.

The catch. All three units are currently rented. 2 of the units have leases that expire in early 2014 and one of the units is a month to month lease. How do we, both ethically and legally, ask the month to month tenants to leave?

If there are any delays, and we have to wait for the tenant to find suitable housing, could a loan based on us using the property as a primary residence be jeopardized?

Attorney Answers 4


  1. Best answer

    None of the prior answers addressed your last paragraph. If you are seeking a loan based on using the purchased property as your primary residence, there is usually an affidavit that you have to sign at closing indicating it is your intent to occupy the premises within 60 days after closing - and I believe this is a requirement of an FHA loan. You should therefore be sure that the seller's notice to the tenant to vacate is a final date within that period, to avoid any question that you might not have had a reasonable intent to occupy the property within the period.

    Please consult an attorney directly before taking action. This answer is intended for general information only and should not be taken as legal advice. My communication with you is not privileged and is not within, or intended to create, an attorney-client relationship. Pursuant to Circular 230 of the Department of Treasury: (1) no written statement to be provided by me relating to any Federal tax transaction or matter is intended to be used, and no such statement can be used, for the purpose of avoiding penalties that may be imposed on the taxpayer, and (2) such written statement may not be used by any person to support the promotion or marketing of or to recommend any Federal tax transaction or matter.


  2. NJSA 2A:18-61.1(L) will allow you to enter into a contract to purchase the building with a specific statement in the contract that you want that unit vacant as you intend to personally occupy the unit after closing. The seller will be required to give that tenant a two month notice to quit. You should retain counsel to represent you in the purchase and address this issue.

    IMPORTANT LEGAL NOTICE: The response to the question posted is not legal advice and it does not create an attorney-client relationship. The response is intended as general information based upon the facts stated in the question, and is provided for educational purposes of the public, not any specific individual. The response given is based upon the limited facts provided by the person asking the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change. Responses are based solely upon New Jersey law.


  3. Ask the month to month tenants to leave and if not done use the eviction process. Month to month tenants know that notice is likely coming. Use the law and the ethics of the law to guide you.


  4. You just need to provide the notice required under California law to the month to month folks. To save yourself some aggravation, it might be worth it to run things by an experienced landlord attorney.

    For a free consultation related to medical malpractice, personal injury, workers' compensation, social security disability or nursing home abuse, please contact Lowenthal & Abrams, PC at 1-800-876-5299. I am licensed in Pennsylvania, but members of my firm are licensed in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York. This post is not legal advice, but instead contains general educational information. Please do not act or refrain from acting based upon what you read in this post. Also please remember that this post does not form an attorney/client relationship between you and me. If you have specific legal questions, you should contact an attorney in your state for assistance. I am licensed to practice law in the state of Pennsylvania.

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