Student approaches to selling housing contracts


Missions, weddings, graduation and wanting to switch up social scenes lead many BYU students to sell their housing contracts. While it’s simple to find a contract for sale, selling one is not always easy.

Students selling contracts get desperate to sell in fear of losing money.

“I was selling my contract because I am going on a mission on Dec. 18,” said Haley Rasmussen, a math education major from Salt Lake City. “I was feeling pretty desperate to sell it, because otherwise I would have lost over $2,000.”

Some students offer discounts on their contracts to get them sold.

“I’m graduating from BYU, and now I need to move on with my life,” said Natalie Grigg, a senior from Niceville, Fla., studying public relations. “I’d be willing to let go of the deposit and put it towards the other person’s contract. But as time goes on, I’ll probably get more desperate.”

Others are confident enough to not discount the rent.

“I hope to sell my current contract (at Santa Barbara) without having to discount the price at all,” said Kevin Egan, who is getting a master’s degree in accounting. “I feel that it is fairly priced and a desirable apartment complex.”

Rasmussen, who was in a rush to get her contract sold, offered to pay the last month’s rent of $250. This helped her sell her contract and prepare for her mission with ease.

Sites like SellThatContract, CougarCrib, KSL and Craigslist are available for students to post their contracts.

“Craigslist attracts tons of spammers that act interested in order to get your personal information,” Egan said. “KSL has been the most effective. I have used SellThatContract but have been unsuccessful. I’ve had a lot of inquiries without follow-up.”

Rasmussen agreed.

“I was trying to post it on Craigslist, KSL and the BYU Off-Campus Housing website. I was trying to repost my listing on those three websites every morning so that my posting would be towards the top as people searched for housing,” Rasmussen said. “I got a fair amount of responses. I did get some interested buyers from Craigslist, but I felt like most of the emails that I was receiving from that posting were scams. The most successful posting was that on the BYU Off-Campus housing website. I think it is because you have to have a BYU ID to sign up and it is a very trustworthy source.”

While those resources are helpful, students also rely heavily on word of mouth and Facebook.

“Honestly, I’m just doing it by word of mouth, not using anything besides Facebook, and I feel like I can sell (the contract) like that,” Grigg said. “I’m fairly confident just because I know it’s a good apartment and I know that it’s a good complex that’s sought after.”

Students who have sold their contracts advise others to sell the social scene of the apartment complex.

“I think the key is to target other BYU students who are familiar with the apartment complexes,” Egan said. “Trying to sell to people who are not familiar is difficult because they will often place a lot of emphasis on the complex’s amenities whereas BYU students will place more emphasis on the social scene.”

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