I too have just had a good tenant change out and put the flat on the Rental market. I had loads of enquiries, all unsuitable. It’s best to wait to ensure you do not get a bad or nightmare tenant always get a guarantor unless circumstances and experience helps alternative solutions.
As Colin says, be careful
Eventually out of the blue one turned up I could accept and he moves in, in a weeks time. Over the new period one’s decisions are either confirmed or you learn another lesson.
Re the sale and good tenant, you are really asking for your cake and eat it.
Have you checked the buyer out?
Do they have a recent letter of confirmed mortgage.
Are they being reasonable?
What’s their employment status?
These will help you decide if the sale is likely to be good or risky.
If okay talk a reasonable completion date
Speak to your tenant and see if they are okay to move voluntary to match the date
If they are see if they will put that in writing to you giving you notice.
Everything you do, do in writing and within the law.
As you say you are desperate to sell you will have to take risks.
Either go for a legally binding date through the normal process
Get the buyer to put down a non returnable deposit to complete by the agreed time… This has its risks for you but shows commitment to them and if you fail you will have to pay and lose that sum. The special agreement can be done by your solicitor with conditions. At cost. A friend has just don’t this very thing via a solicitor.
This together with the tenants voluntary notice may solve your problem. If the buyer pulls out you get the deposit. You overcome the 6 month landlord notice .
However, as always this walks a fine line although it may not be needed if the tenant leaves and the buyers contract goes through.
What if the tenant cannot find a suitable place and good tenant turns to I’m not going to or cannot leave. Then the 6 months rule ( minimum) before you get them out kicks in and you either lose financially or the sale.
Things to help close both scenarios if you check the buyer and follow one of the chosen routes above.
Help your tenant look for a new place by keeping an eye on the market for a place to suit their needs.
If they find somewhere offer help to move out and in.
If they find a place write to them with a good reference which can be used to speed up the process.
If you REALLY KNOW the check out will be fine and you’ve done a pre check out inspection. I’ve never done this but it comes to mind with loads of caveats , get a written agreement between you and the tenant that you can keep their deposit on return for helping them put a deposit down on the new property. As I say this has risks but if the tenant is as you say, and remains so. It may be a way over the new deposit if and only if the tenant doesn’t have the funds. This is a whole new subject on its own, risks, tenant relationship and ensuring the admin matches any risk.
You are looking for easy answers, the easiest is all parties are agreeable. However, you may need to think outside the box!
At the end of the day it’s about your gut feelings