Hello Magic, how long ago did your friends get a 6 month rent back? We've experienced stricter lending standards as of late, in many term categories. In the past, some people bought income/investment property under the pretense of owner occupied so they could get a better interest rate/terms on their loan. Loan interest rate is higher on a property that you do not intend to owner occupy as well as a higher required down payment. Due to dishonesty on some people's part, the banks have become quite strict about the owner occupancy requirement. I represented a buyer purchase last year, but he was still on military duty in another state, the lender let us go 90 days on occupancy, however, he had to sign an affadavit, show documentation, etc. I believe that if you don't ask for anything, the default is 30 days occupancy, however, rules of owner occupancy may vary from lender to lender (bank to bank) so I'll be curious to see some loan brokers jump in here and give us their opinion.