Minnesota rent to own:

It’s an alternative way to buy a home at a future date.

Rent-to-own agreement, also called a lease option or a lease-to-own agreement.

When buyers sign this kind of contract, they agree to rent the home for a set amount of time before exercising an option to purchase the property when or before the lease expires.

Remember you are renting the property you do not own it so DO NOT PUT ALOT OF MONEY INTO THE PROPERTY TILL YOU PURCHASE IT.

Rent to own Properties and Rentals

I have seen people put alot of money in the property and to find out they cannot get a loan. The Renter is out all the money when the contract is up.

We do not do a lot of these types of transaction due to the buyer not having a lot of protection. We recommend contract for deeds see more details on this information on our website.


Tenant/buyers who have imperfect credit scores are typically drawn to rent-to-own properties since the lease terms allow them to live in the home while they take the steps necessary to fix their credit and secure a mortgage. Most lease purchase agreements allow them to lock in a market rate when they sign the contract. People with poor credit find the leasing period a crucial opportunity to repair their financial profile to secure a loan. A common complaint tenant/buyers have with rent-to-own agreements, however, stems from their inability to secure a loan in time to purchase the property, whether due to insufficient downpayment or credit, at which point they are left to restructure the agreement or forced to walk away.


A private mortgage is a loan secured by real estate that is made by a private lender, instead of a traditional lender, financial institution, or government institution. These loans are most commonly short term and last anywhere from 6 months to three years. These are asset based loans made for the purchase and rehabilitation of real estate. Because the loans are asset based, the decision to loan is based on the criteria of the property and not usually the qualifications, or credit of the borrower.

Interest rates on these loans are considerably higher than traditional loans and may range from 12% to 18%, with points sometimes being required as well. Loans are made on an LTV (loan to value) of 65% to 70%, to preserve sufficient equity in the property for the private lender in the event of default.

In a MN rent-to-own transaction, the tenant lives on the real property and pay towards purchasing the property at a fixed price within a specific period of time, usually one to Five years. As part of the contract, the renter will be required to make a nonrefundable deposit  often included as part of a down payment at the end of the lease term. In addition to monthly rent, often an additional amount called a rent credit is paid into an escrow account during the lease period. This amount is added to the deposit and used as part of the down payment at the end of the lease term. This pushes the rent above the market rate but helps build savings for purchase if the buy option is taken.At the end of the lease term, the tenant is offered right of first refusal to purchase the property at the agreed upon sale price, or walk away and forfeit the deposit. If the tenant is unable or unwilling to exercise the option to buy, the owner is then free to rent or sell the property to another buyer, or to restructure the contract.


Rent-to-own agreements are based on a 3-5 year rental term. In the structure of this type of transaction, the consumer lessee – at the end of each contract.

Some have opined that residential home rental may become the new normal, whereas proponents of rent-to-own real estate agreements argue otherwise.


Because rent-to-own real estate contracts are flexible open-source documents, there is room for scammers to take advantage of unprepared tenants. Rent-to-own proponents recommend consulting licensed realtors and/or real estate lawyers for every step throughout your transaction for your safety.

Typical lease purchase information

Monthly Payment – How much the tenant will be paying monthly.

Rent Credit – How much of the tenant’s monthly payment will go to the eventual down-payment of the property at the end of the lease. It is strongly suggested that the tenant establish an escrow account to ensure the security of his or her rent credit.

Duration – The timeframe of the Lease-Purchase Agreement. Usually 2–3 years or more.

Property Value – The locked-in sale price of the property. The Tenant-Buyer and Seller usually agree to keep the property value the same despite house market changes.

Terms and Rules – This section talks about other details of the Lease such as property taxes, home repairs, homeowner’s association fee, etc


Lease-purchase contract agreements are open source in nature and flexible to the needs of the tenant/buyer and landlord/seller. Lease-purchase contracts are popular with tenant/buyers who have poor credit scores, lower savings for down payments, or people who are moving from one city to another but are pending a sale on their previous home. They are great for sellers who are having difficulty securing tenants for their properties, which can be common when a house is for sale.



A security device entered into when the seller of property, as opposed to a bank or financial institution, advances asum of money or credit to the purchaser in return for holding the mortgage on the property.

The seller of the property, rather than a lending institution, is the mortgagee. These mortgages are givenconcurrently with the conveyance of the land or the transfer of the items sold.

A mortgage or trust deed given as all or part of the purchase price for real property. In some states the purchase money mortgage or trust deed loan can be made by a seller who extends credit to the buyer of property or by a third party lender.



Land is a contract between the buyer and seller of real property in which the seller provides the buyer financing in the purchase, and the buyer repays the resulting loan in installments. Under a land contract, the seller retains the legal title to the property, while permitting the buyer to take possession of it for most purposes other than legal ownership. The sale price is typically paid in periodic installments, often with a balloon payment at the end to make the timelength of payments shorter than in the corresponding fully amortized loan without a final balloon payment. When the full purchase price has been paid including any interest, the seller is obligated to convey to the buyer legal title to the property. An initial down payment from the buyer to the seller is usually also required

Since a land contract specifies the sale of a specific item of real estate between a seller and buyer, a land contract can be considered a special type of real estate contract. In the usual, more conventional real estate contracts, a seller does not provide a loan to the buyer; the contract either does not specify a loan or includes provisions for a loan from a different “third party” lender, usually a financial institution in practice. When third party lenders are involved, typically a lien, as part of a mortgage or trust deed, is placed on the property, in which the property serves as collateral until the loan is repaid.

  • terms contract
  • contract for deed
  • agreement for deed
  • land installment contract
  • installment sale agreement

Contract for deed sites with listings and more information pertaining to buying and selling a property on a contract for deed or Rent to own.


Steve Vennemann


Contract for deed specialist