How to Find Rent-to-Own Homes 


Owning a home is appealing to most people, but not all of those people have the credit or financial means to buy. Most home purchases require a 20% or more down payment, which requires a person to place thousands of dollars up for the home when they sign the contract. Credit score starts at 650 for mortgage approval and even then, qualifying is not always simple. If you love the thought of owning a home but creditor finances stand in the way, perhaps it’s time to learn more about rent-to-own homes.

What is a Rent-to-Own Home?

A rent-to-own home is a property that a person rents for a monthly rate (previously agreed upon) with the option to buy the property before the expiry of the lease term. All money paid in rent is put toward closing costs or costs of the home if the individual decides to proceed with the purchase. Most RTO homes cost significantly less than the average home listed on the market, which is an added bonus for anyone with a limited budget. 

It Can’t be True

Now, you may think this all sounds too good to be true, but it’s not. Some things really are out there to help make life a little less stressful for us all. The key is finding those de-stressors and the things that you most want, like a home. Is there a catch, you ask? Sort of. Only about 5% of the entire real estate market consists of rent-to-own homes. It may not be easy to find a rent-to-own deal, at least one that matches your needs, but it is worth the effort. The majority of sellers want their money before parting with the home and appreciate the comfort that comes when the buyer has a good credit standing and income. Use online sources and other information if you want to find an RTO home. Research goes a long way and ensures that you get what you need when it’s needed.

Before You Browse Homes

Many people rush to buy a home and forget the importance of choosing a home that meets their needs. If it’s drag the first time you look at the home, it will certainly be a drag as a resident. Don’t settle simply because you find a rent-to-own home. The options are limited but they’re still out there. A little more research can yield that home that you and your family will love.

Is there a preferable neighborhood? How many bedrooms do you need? Can you make repairs, if necessary? How much money can you afford to pay each month? These are a few of the considerations that help you find the perfect rent-to-own home. Jot all of this information down.

Ask Around

Ask friends, family, neighbors, coworkers, and others if they know about any rent-to-own homes. You never know what someone else knows until you ask and in this case, avoiding this conversation is a huge mistake. Friends and people you know usually offer helpful advice and information, so why not ask? It could very well save an abundance of time and hassle when you ask trusted sources.

Small Towns

Many rent-to-own homes are located in small towns where the market isn’t very competitive. Sellers in these options understand the challenges they face when selling, making them more willing to work out a deal if it means the home sales faster. Perhaps look in and near the city and find the home of your dreams at a price and rental-purchase agreement that you can afford. 

Newspaper Listings

Check the classified ads section of the local newspaper for listings in the local and neighboring areas. Many sellers who own just one home prefer listing it in the newspaper, particularly those with a unique rent-to-own situation. Look inside local newspapers and free publications available from area grocers and markets. 


Craigslist is a great place to begin the search for your new home. It’s chocked-full of rentals but beware of scams and anything that sounds too good to be true. Special websites dedicated to rent-to-own homes also offer help when you’re searching for a great home. You’ll find plenty of homes in all areas on these RTO-dedicated sites. Some of the sites may require you to create an account while others allow anyone browsing capabilities. This is the most common technique used to find RTO homes because it’s easy and convenient and is available 24/7.

Distressed Landlords

A distressed landlord who rents his home after the inability to sell the property may very well be happy to hear that you want to work on a rent-to-own option. This agreement would take a lot of stress off of their shoulders and benefit you in tremendous ways, of course. It never hurts to ask the landlord if he’d be interested in such a deal. You may be surprised to hear the answer.

Real Estate Agent

Real estate agents know their community and may very well know the best place to look for your new RTO home. Asking a real estate agent about rent-to-own homes won’t cost a dim but can put you on the road to homeownership that you can afford. And, if the agent helps find your new home, they charge only a small commission fee.

Find a Great RTO Home

Don’t let income or bad/no credit stand between yourself and homeownership. Thousands of people make dreams come true every year with the help of RTO homes; your name can be next on the list. Use the information here during the search for a rent-to-own home to eliminate some of the worry and headaches you might otherwise face. Many RTO resources help people just like yourself find the home of their dreams. Be a part of the excitement and become a homeowner in the RTO way!