I see you are from my area, I live in the Lansdale area. Sometimes a seller will consider a lease purchase, which is where you rent out the house with the intention of later purchasing it. The money you pay in rent goes toward the purchase but at the end you are not obligated to buy if you change your mind. There are a few reasons why many sellers are not willing to do this. One is for the reason I just stated...the person may change their mind and decide not to purchase the house after all, and the other reason is that the seller may need the proceeds from the sale in order to move on to his next house.
If you would like to speak with me more about this I would be happy to...I could also introduce you to the lender I work with who can give you a really good idea of where you are and how long it will take you to be able to purchase. This can be done over the phone if you prefer.
Email me at email@example.com and we can talk more.
You can also offer to lease-purchase a home with the rental payments going towards the sale price. Thus you can be renting, again usually at a premium rent, until you are able to obtain the mortgage you want.
It never hurts to ask, the worst you can get is a no.
Mary Beth and Alicia
To a certain extent I agree with the naysayers. It may be difficult and most people do not want to be landlords but unless you are aware of the sellers unique situation, you never know they will say. There are many people who have to move and unfortunately can't sell their home in this market. Renting their home for minimum risk may be the only way for them to make their move or even keep their home out of foreclosure. Nothing ventured nothing gained.
Congrats for thinking out of the box. The worst think someone can tell you is no thank you...or just a flat out No. Nothing ventured....nothing gained. I wrote in my blog, a while back, about ways to find a lease-to-own house with or without the help of a Real Estate Agent. Here is the link if you want to take a look:
Typically, as has been stated below, you have to try to find someone who doesn't need their money out right away in a typical transaction OR someone that's financially upside down or behind on their payments already. That's why if you could find or focus on someone that has their home "for rent", they may be more inclined to say......"SURE! I was renting it because I wasn't able to sell it in the first place!" The more motivated the seller/landlord is, the more chance they'd go for a lease purchase. Motivation is key. Play to their NEED, not their WANT. Few people want to keep making mortgage payments on an empty 2nd home or rental property. :)
Best wishes & Laus Deo,
Please see my blog with tips and advice on how to rent to own a house