Ron Denhaan, Realtor (949) 290-3263. Orange County real estate specialist.
Orange County Lease-options

Orange County Lease Option Properties

Update for the 2021 real estate market - When I created this page 10 years ago around 2011, bank owned (REO),  short sale properties, and lease-option properties were at least available, with most major cities having these for sale on the MLS. Today, in the 2021 Real Estate market, when I checked the MLS on 11/28/2021, there were only 4 (active) properties that are Bank Owned (with 3 of those in Laguna Woods), only 3 homes listed as a Short Sale, and 2 homes listed offering a lease-option. The high home prices, low inventory, and high buyer demand of today's market means that even homeowners in distress can easily sell their homes conventionally for more than they owe. Keep that in mind as you read this web page and realize that the information below for standard, bank owned, short sales, and lease-option types, were much more meaningful about 10 years ago than they are today. 

Regarding lease-options, I no longer recommend this type of transaction at all. Here is why: The trouble with lease-options

A lease-option (also know as a lease to own, rent to purchase, lease to buy home, or rent to buy) is a conventional lease and a home purchase, bridged by a lease-option contract. This page was designed to help you quickly locate homes in Orange County, CA that have a lease-option available. Use the search links below to find lease option properties in Aliso Viejo, Newport Beach, Newport Coast, Laguna Beach, Corona Del Mar, Coto de Caza, Dove Canyon, San Clemente, San Juan Capistrano, Lake Forest, Portola Hills, Foothill Ranch, Wagon Wheel Canyon, Ladera Ranch, Fullerton, Yorba Linda, Irvine, Tustin, North Tustin, Rancho Santa Margarita, Mission Viejo, Dana Point, Laguna Niguel, Laguna Hills, Silverado Canyon, Modjeska Canyon, Robinson Ranch, or Las Flores, CA.

Orange County lease-option home listings

lease-option homes in South Orange County, CA As you browse the South Orange County, CA lease-option listings, you will see homes that have a lease price and others that have a sales price. The same home may even be listed twice (once for lease and once for sale). If the listing contains a lease price, it indicates the approximate cost that the home would rent for on a monthly basis during the lease phase of the lease-option contract. If the listing contains a sales price, it indicates the approximate price that the homeowner is seeking to sell the home. You will probably negotiate a similar price for the purchase phase of the lease-option contract.

Lease option home search by city or search all OC homes below

Note: The links on this page are no longer working, as the field for "lease option" in the MLS,is no longer allowed to be used on third party feeds to web sites. If you are interested in receiving a list of homes that are offering a lease-option, send me an e-mail here and I will send you a list from the MLS. 

Anaheim Laguna Hills & Laguna Niguel
Anaheim Hills Lake Forest, Portola Hills, Foothill Ranch
Aliso Viejo Las Flores
Corona Del Mar Newport Beach & Newport Coast
Costa Mesa North Tustin
Coto de Caza Orange & Orange Park Acres
Dana Point Rancho Santa Margarita
Dove Canyon Robinson Ranch
Fountain Valley San Clemente
Fullerton San Juan Capistrano
Irvine Silverado & Modjeska Canyons
Ladera Ranch Tustin
Laguna Beach Wagon Wheel Canyon
. Yorba Linda

Looking in a different area? Call me! (949) 290-3263

Basics of a Lease-Option

  • The buyer pays the seller option money called "Option Consideration" for the right to later purchase the property. The lease option money may be substantial.

  • The buyer and seller may agree to a purchase price now or the buyer may agree to pay market value at the time the option is exercised. It is negotiable. However, most buyers want to lock in the future purchase price upon inception of the lease option.

  • During the term of the lease option, the buyer agrees to lease the property from the seller for a predetermined rental amount.

  • The term of the lease option agreement is negotiable, but the common length is generally from one year to three years.

  • The option consideration money generally applies toward the toward the purchase of the home.

  • A small portion of the monthly rental payment also applies toward the purchase price.

  • Option money is rarely refundable.

  • Nobody else can buy the property during the lease option period.

  • The buyer generally cannot assign the lease option without seller approval.

  • If the buyer does not exercise the lease option and purchase the property at the end of the lease option, the option expires.

  • The buyer is not obligated to buy the property at the end of the lease term.

A lease-option is suitable for someone who:

  • Has good credit

  • Has a property they are selling and will have equity for a down payment

  • Has consulted with a lender and is confident that they can qualify for financing at the end of the lease term

  • Has a sufficient amount of cash for the option deposit which is typically 1 to 5% of the purchase price, and understands they may lose it if they do not exercise the option.

A lease-option is unsuitable for someone who:

  • Is not sure if they qualify for a loan (has not consulted with a lender yet)

  • Has poor credit

  • Is uncertain whether or not they will have enough cash for a down payment at the end of the lease term

Lease-option myths

  • The home owner will finance the purchase - This is almost never the case

  • The lease term can be for three years or more -  Typically, the term is 12 to 18 months, maximum

  • That all of the rent applies to the purchase  - Almost never. Typically only a few hundred dollars per month is offered, and this is usually only if the rent is increased to cover it!

  • That it is a great for people with bad credit  - It is not a home buying "short cut" for people with poor credit. If you have credit issues, you must be sure that you can qualify for financing before the lease term ends, else, you may lose your entire deposit! Consult with a lender before entering into a lease-option agreement!

Read more about lease options, here

Related links:

If you are interested in an Orange County lease-option home, please call me. I will be happy to assist you with a lease option, lease to own houses, rent to buy property in Orange County, CA, as well as a sale, purchase, lease, or rental. Your source for lease option homes in Southern California.

    Ron Denhaan, Realtor

Ron Denhaan - Realtor

Realty One Group

(949) 290-3263

DRE# 01728866

Ron Denhaan, Realtor, lease-option specialist


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