3 Myths of a “Cash for Keys” Agreement

If you’ve been a landlord for any length of time, chances are you’ve had to deal with difficult tenants before. Sometimes they become more than a mere difficulty though, and you need them gone. But eviction is an arduous and frustrating process to go through. That’s why last month we gave you some alternative ways to get rid of bad tenants. One of those ways is called a cash for keys agreement.

Miniature house with a set of keys on a wooden table.

What some people misunderstand about cash for keys agreements is that they aren’t one-size-fits-all solutions. For one thing, you don’t have to have bad tenants to decide to pay them to leave the property. It’s also not the very last resort when you do have problem occupants. Lastly — and this is important — a tenant payoff won’t solve the root problem if your lessee vetting process is lacking.

Myth 1: Cash for keys is only for problem tenants

News flash: you don’t have to have an awful tenant story to want your current tenants out! This is where a buyout agreement can come in handy. If you’re a landlord who wants to “remodel the property, move-in themselves, or change the lease in order to increase the rent to market rate,” you’re in luck. A buyout agreement is essentially a cash for keys deal accomplished under less fraught circumstances.

This can be a great option when you want to renegotiate the value, purpose, or rent on your property. A buyout agreement can help you hit reset on a property, and it’s going to bring much less anxiety in almost all cases.

Two fat stacks of one-hundred-dollar bills on a table in a house.

Myth 2: Cash for keys is the only way to save yourself from a complete loss.

You rented to the wrong people. And while you know it now, that doesn’t really help. Sure, this experience may make you more careful about getting burned in the future, but what about right now? When you’ve exhausted everything within your legal limits, a cash for keys deal may seem like your only recourse, but that’s not necessarily the case.

Instead of taking a financial hit just to push out your horrible tenants (And honestly, doesn’t it boil your blood a little to let the bully win?), you could actually get on the receiving end of some cash by selling the property to a reputable home buyer.

Folks often ask if they can really sell a property with tenants still living in it. While it may sound too good to be true, that’s exactly what companies like our own can offer. Instead of giving in to the tenants or losing money on the deal, you have the option to look at a free cash offer. Here’s what landlords get out of the deal:

  • No post-tenant cleanup and renovation
  • No more dealing with the tenants
  • Cash in hand

Maybe it’s your best option this time around. Maybe it’s not. A lot of that depends on how bad the tenants are to be honest. And how much you’re willing to deal with. But rest assured, whatever they’ve done to the place, as a professional family renovation team, we’re thrilled to buy your property and we’re ready to fix it up.

A hand holding a set of house keys with a house-shaped key ring attached.

Myth 3: It will solve my tenant problems!

Sigh. Unfortunately, no amount of buying out or paying tenants to leave is going to stop more bad tenants from renting your properties. You know what will though? Better vetting! If you’ve been lax about background and employment checks, it’s time to change that. More intensive screening and interviewing will save you so much headache in the future. It will also ensure the only cash for keys agreements you make in the future will be on your terms.

As a landlord, you have a tough and often unusual job. We know you usually have to wear multiple hats and deal with a variety of personality types. Why make it harder on yourself than it needs to be, right? If you’ve been cutting corners on screening, consider upgrading to a more robust tenant screening service.

Cash for keys transaction on a black table.

When Is Cash for Keys the Smart Choice?

It can be a financially viable move if you want to renovate or raise rent. In the case that you aren’t interested in renting the place at the moment but want to keep the property for whatever reason (saving on your child’s dorm rental prices through college, for instance).

Just remember: sometimes paying off a lessee to get them out really is your best option. But it’s not always your best. You may be stressed and ready to cave, but there are always options. Take a deep breath, do your research, and remember… you’re going to get through this before you know it!

Selling a House During the Pandemic

If you’re wondering what is the best method for selling a house during the pandemic, Upward Home Solutions has a service to help you.

These are stressful and uncertain times. First and foremost, I’d like to extend our best to you and your family. Our top priority is promoting public health and safety. Together, we hope you are taking the necessary precautions along with us to stop the coronavirus in its tracks. 

selling a house during the pandemic of COVID 19

Unfortunately, the fear and fallout surrounding this pandemic are not confined even to our physical wellbeing. For many in our community, this situation is also a financial concern.

Many homeowners are realizing that finding a realtor and listing on the MLS has never been more difficult than it is right now.  When you list with a realtor, you are contracting with someone to help you sell your home. Upward Home Solutions works differently. We want to buy your home. We will give you cash for my house.

For homeowners, selling a house during the pandemic presents some unique problems. We buy your house.

Here’s some good news for homeowners:

Home prices remain strong despite a very volatile stock market. Equity in homes has never been higher. Selling real estate is still a viable option, despite it being difficult to find a realtor and go through that whole process for selling a house during the pandemic.

At Upward Home Solutions, we believe that now, more than ever, the first priority of any business should be to lift up its community. We understand the constraints that a tough market can put on a homeowner’s wallet. So if our services can help you with selling a house during the pandemic, we want to hear from you. 

selling a house during the pandemic is tough

What is the process of selling a house during the pandemic?

If you were counting on selling in the near future, you might be wondering how in the world to do that now. Many things have changed about selling a house during the pandemic.

Upward Home Solutions remains in a unique position to buy your home quickly. We can streamline the process and put cash in your hand when you really need it—no waiting on bank approvals or inspections. We’ll close on your timeline, in as little as a couple weeks. 

We are buying houses, and people are still selling a house during the pandemic. New procedures keep you and your family safe while eliminating stress and uncertainty.

Rental Properties

Many landlords have been watching governmental developments. Those relying on rental property income for their own bills may have trouble with the moratorium on evictions. The laws seem to change weekly. It’s a headache keeping up with all the new rules.

We get it. Selling a house during the pandemic is a tricky situation.

If you are a landlord and you’re wondering about selling a house during the pandemic, UHS is in a position to purchase property regardless of occupancy or lease status. We will assume your risk and all that goes with it. 

How we are adjusting our services for selling a house during the pandemic:

As mentioned above, health and safety remain priority number one. Thankfully, UHS is able to limit and do away with the need for close proximity as we fight the spread of this virus. When selling a house during the pandemic, you will want to be extra careful.

If you’re curious about your options with UHS, we’ll get you on a phone call with Amy, who can answer any questions you have and outline our process in more detail to help you with selling a house during the pandemic.

greetings when selling a house during the pandemic

After a quick greeting with Tim at your appointment, don’t be offended when he keeps his distance. We’re being very cognizant of health protocol. Tim’s car will remain stocked with hand sanitizer and wipes, and you have our word that he won’t go on any appointments if he or anyone in his family is feeling unwell. Tim always wears a face mask to every appointment.

Tim will take photos and videos of your house so that we can assess value without sending anyone else to walk through your property. However, we are also offering two alternatives to in-person appointments.

  1. We can make “curb offers” where we don’t even have to come into the house. 
  2. Homeowners can leave keys for us in a lockbox and we can go through when no one else is there. 
Tim Smith headshot photo
Tim Smith

As always, meeting with Tim and getting an offer doesn’t mean you have to sell your house to us. We would never pressure you into doing something that isn’t right for you. Our business has always been based on trust. Meeting with Tim simply gives you one more option that you didn’t have before for selling a house during the pandemic.

If you need a fast house sale, we can finish the purchase of your house in less than a week.

Homeowners do not even have to show up in person to the closing. 

We use digital signatures for the contracts and for closing documents. Recently, Upward Home Solutions purchased a home from a man who lives in the Caribbean. We never met the homeowner in person. Nonetheless, we were able to use a notary in his home country, digital signatures, and a wire transfer for payment.

At the end of the day, selling a house from a remote location is always difficult. Selling a house during the pandemic is even harder. Fortunately, Upward Home Solutions is an expert in non-traditional sales.

We’re In This Together

Stay safe, stay strong. If there’s anything our business can do to help you, please let us know. Selling a house during the pandemic is a unique situation. Nonetheless, we have many ways to help.

We built Upward Home Solutions on a belief in community and on finding ways to serve ours. If we can help in your situation, please let us know.    

Amy is ready to answer your call. She will explain our process for selling a house during the pandemic.

614-705-0866

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The Team at Upward Home Solutions

More About Upward Home Solutions

Upward Home Solutions has been helping homeowners since 2005. We have bought hundreds of houses in Columbus, OH. If you want to sell my house fast, there’s no company with more experience and professionalism. UHS is Central Ohio’s #1 company for buying homes from people who are selling a house during the pandemic.

Maybe you have seen the “we buy houses” signs. That’s not us. Our business is built on relationships. Our best source of houses comes from referrals.

You can read reviews from happy clients.

Selling a house during the pandemic is safest with Upward Home Solutions. So if you’re wondering, How can I sell my house online? we’re here to help.

We specialize in difficult situations. Realtors are wonderful, but they aren’t right for everyone. When selling a house during the pandemic, selling to cash buyers like Upward Home Solutions may be your best option.

My situation is unique

We work with homeowners in unique situations everyday. Tim S is amazing when with working with families or couples who disagree on what should be done with the home.

UHS buys inherited houses that are in probate. We can help with the transition to senior care or a nursing home.

If you owe taxes or have liens, we can help. If your house is messy, you can take what you want and leave the rest. You can sell my house as is fast.

Upward Home Solutions can make selling a house during the pandemic less stressful, emotionally, and financially.

Find A House, Get $$: Our Referral Program

Find A House, Get $$: Our Referral Program

We pay you for each and every referral that leads to a sale.

Upward Home Solutions is looking for people who want to partner with us in our mission to revitalize neighborhoods, one house at a time.

Know of a house in need of a fix-up? You don’t have to own it and it’s easy to submit a lead. Click here to get started.

Columbus’ Own Fixer Upper Couple


Have you ever wondered where the Fixer Upper power couple, Chip and Joanna Gaines, find the houses for their business? They have a network of people who are constantly searching for their next flip. Of all those homes, they then choose one that has good bones, lots of potential, and a fair asking price.

The Owners, Tim and Katie

Tim and Katie are the fixer-upper power-couple in Central Ohio, and they’re looking for their next renovation. But they need help.

our referral program is the best
Tim and Katie

Do You Know A House That Fits These Descriptions?

**Do you know of a vacant house in your neighborhood? The windows are always dark, no one shovels the sidewalk in the winter or mows the grass in the summer. You don’t remember how long it’s been since you’ve seen a car in the driveway.

**Maybe you have an uncle who is retired. He lives alone and hasn’t done much to the house since he bought it 30 years ago. There is wallpaper in the hall and a pink sink in the bathroom. Your uncle has been talking about how nice it would be to buy a condo in Florida and be a beach bum, but something is holding him back.

**Or perhaps you have a good friend who owns a rental house. At girl’s night out, she was talking again about how freakin’ hard it is to find a good tenant. Her husband hates spending weekends doing handyman jobs at the property and it’s stressing them both out. They like the income, but there’s just too much going on right now to handle it all.

We want to hear from you!

Upward Home Solutions has services to fit every need.

We buy houses as-is so people don’t have to fix them up. Even better, they can take the stuff they want and leave the rest.

Our company uses technology to help people who have mobility issues or live out of state. We recently bought a house from a man who lives in the Caribbean. He did not have to travel back to Ohio for the closing, saving him time and money. Moreover, our title agency will come to you, even if that means driving to meet you at a nursing home.

We recently had one elderly couple who were ready to move on to the next stage in their lives. We were thrilled to be able to offer a win-win solution, and check out the amazing transformation we put their house through!

And many of these amazing properties come to us from our network of friends, Realtors, and through social media.

How It Works

1. Send Us The Info

You give us as much info as you know about the house. At a minimum, we need a property address. If you know the name, phone number, and/or email address for the owner, that’s even better. But don’t worry if you don’t have the owner’s contact information. We can figure that out.

Email information to Upward@614Houses.com

Call us at 614-705-8066

Submit the information on this form.

Be sure to include your contact information because we will tag the lead with your name. That’s how we know who to pay!

2. We will take it from there.

We’ll contact the homeowner. If the homeowner is interested in selling, we will set up an appointment to visit the house and make an offer.

3. If they accept the offer, Upward Home Solutions will give you $100.

You get your choice of a Cameron Mitchell gift card, an Amazon gift card, or cash. We will get in touch with you and ask you how you would like to receive your gift.

It’s that easy! One email or phone call is all it takes to get the process started.

cash for your referral

Check out our Referral Program FAQ or give us a call if you have any further questions!