What is the motivation of the current seller to agree to a short sale opposed to allowing it to go to foreclosure? Does this seller have an agent representing them? If so, then they obviously were motivated enough to contact a Realtor and list the home for sale which could indicate that they have intentions of moving out. But intentions and actions are two different things.
As soon as legally possible, you must start eviction proceedings starting with a notice to vacate pending the transfer of title or closing date. You could put a per diem charge in the letter stating that they could owe you "x" amount of dollars for each day they remain in the premises after close. A court may not order them to pay that penalty but it could straighten up the owner enough to get them moving.
Worse case is that you will evict them under California law and all that entails. Yuck. It happens though. And maybe you will be fortunate enough to take title and possession all at the same time! Good luck to you. I'm not an attorney in any regard and not advising you in a legal capacity. This issue should be reviewed by an attorney for further action.
As mentioned in prior posts, you or your agent should state in your contract the present occupants need to vacate on or before the close of escrow. You also have the right to perform a walkthrough prior to close of escrow. I would recommend the walkthrough be performed a day or two before your scheduled to close escrow. If the owner is not out, tell the title company not to record the transfer until the occupant vacates.
Blaison is right and in this area in the South Bay we have 2 different contracts both of which will protect you the second contract is a different section but we can help with that. I have my office in Cupertino which Campbell is very close and certainly in my area of expertise.
Let me know if I can help you and you can reach me at 408-802-1792
When you write an offer, there's a clause in purchase agreement (page 1, Section 3B) where you mention the occupancy status when the occupancy to be delivered to buyer like whether on close of escrow or no later than x number of days after close of escrow, so you need to check mark on "On date of close of Escrow". In that way, you will be fine and your agent can help on that purchase agreement.
Let me know if you need any further assistance, I would be glad to help you. You can reach me directly at 510-366-9405. Speaks Hindi & Malayalam also.
Certified Short Sale Expert
Prudential California Realty
You should also exercise your right for a buyer walk through at least 5 days before close of escrow, and maybe even the day before close of escrow to make sure that the seller is vacating the premises.
Unless you and the seller have an agreement where the seller can stay after close of escrow, and you charge him a pre-set rent for each day that he occupies the place (for example, the daily cost of your own PITI, principal, interest, taxes and insurance), then the seller has no rights to stay. If the seller doesn't leave, you have every right to evict the seller and change the locks (which is something you should do anyway upon buying a previously owned house).
Share your concerns with your realtor who will guide you through the process.