Investors on Terms: Context

This entry is part 2 of 2 in the series Investors on Terms

PROXIMA INVESTORS are Investors on Terms!

Mansions in Sterling, Massachusetts. Right on golf courses, satisfying saltwater pools, luxurious wine cellars, comfortably large saunas, professionally equipped exercise rooms, multiple car garages, pristine level grounds, numerous and ubiquitous fireplaces, huge rooms and spaces, areas for all needs and purposes

Our primary objective in the course of our real estate investing business is to leverage deal terms to achieve a solution for Sellers, Buyers and all parties involved in our deals, getting them DONE!

Real Estate Investors Today

In the real estate world, there are investors of all kinds; small and professional landlords, rehabbers and flippers, wholesalers, note investors and the list goes on. There are also “investors on terms“. We, at Proxima Investors, are exactly that, “investors on terms“.

Investors on Terms and Awareness

Rent to own in Sterling MA
Sterling, MA Rent-to-Own: “Contemporary Mansion”

While it’s a quick and easy way to describe what we do, it may be a little more complicated to give the right idea to those who have never heard of “investors or terms”, even within the industry.

Home owners who may buy and sell properties 2-3 times max in the course of their lifetime (pretty much American Homeowners‘ average), are probably the least likely to have done business or heard about an “investor on terms“.

Our actual Sellers and Buyers, now have a good idea. However, with so many different types of deals that we can make, they probably have only a partial understanding of our whole business of “buying and selling real estate on terms“.

Even professionals in real estate may have never heard of what a “deal on terms” and what it entails.

Real estate agents are generally busy listing homes in the ordinary way and closing only conventional deals.

Real estate attorneys may be trained and experienced in conventional closings only. Even many other investors like landlords are not aware of the concept of a residential real estate “terms deal. They are all so ubiquitous and mainstream that anything different for them is difficult to comprehend as they have no experience with Investors on Terms.

Other sectors and times of Real Estate

Norwell, MA Rent-to-Own Homes: “Custom Cape”

If you look into other niches and fields of the vast real estate market, you may find many more instances of “Investments on Terms“. In the commercial sector, much more valuable real estate properties and complex transactions make it worthwhile to negotiate in detail and design sophisticated “deals on terms”.

You don’t have to look far to find “deals on terms“, you can just look at the real estate world in America in the 1970s. “Investments on terms” like Subject To purchases were common and very popular, in the context of interest rates that were very unstable and growing out of control from week to week.

The 2008 Downturn

More advanced and creative deals are needed today to purchase a home with mortgages that are so tough to get, especially for some categories

The 2008 downturn put an end to the easy loans and mortgages that inflated and destabilized the real estate market. The ever rising prices suddenly ended bursting and crashing down heavily, determining the need for tighter regulations. These are now seriously affecting a wide range of the population now needing alternative ways to finance the purchase of a home. This situation brought back some techniques from the past, as the mentioned Subject To deals, from other sectors of the market, just one example would be Lease-Options, or new and innovative, like some unexpected combination of techniques as in a Wrap-around Mortgage, or a classic Owner Finance deal which is pretty intuitive in concept, but a lot of work and expertise is necessary to define the details to make it a solid deal.

Resistance to competing models

Real Estate Agents in the residential market: they specialize in straight Purchase & Sales and Rentals only.
There are around 2 million active real estate agents in the USA (source: ARELLO) with a population of 327 million, that’s 1 agent every 163 people. And that’s why everyone has an agent within easy reach, at all times.

These transactions are becoming more known and a more frequent choice as the industry, professionals and consumers, learn or relearn about them. The recent history of easy mortgages and refinancing lead to easy transactions with lots of equity. These easy deals shaped the industry into a predominantly intermediated one because the luxury of hiring an agent appeared very affordable while netting inflated prices. Despite the crash, the industry players still dominate, thanks to the stronghold position they acquired. They are able to dictate their only transaction models, supported by collective efforts organized by large bodies like the NRA. They are in control and mount a strong resistance to anything that may disrupt the present order and threaten their dominance. That’s why often, albeit not always, we find real estate agents uncooperative and failing in their fiduciary duties towards the sellers and buyers who hired them.

Increasing Awareness and Market Share

Despite all that, the percentage of deals on terms concluded is constantly growing and so is awareness. Mostly replacing For Sale By Owner transactions, as they typically involve a professional at no cost, they also represent a strong and threatening alternative to hiring real estate agents who charge Sellers a good amount of equity in fees.

When you hear that deals on terms are dangerous, illegal, immoral or anything along those lines, you're hearing the desperate voice of those who just stop short of admitting unawareness, lack of knowledge and no expertise in the field. 

BEWARE of those who make derogatory remarks about their business competitors without any in depth knowledge or experience!

Investments on Terms For Buyers:

Hand people are paying the dollar with other hand holds the keys.
Many Buyers are caught out in these days of challenging lending conditions, making Deals on Terms an appealing alternative to get on the property ladder.

The need for alternative financing and the difficulty in getting it within established models, like the ordinary home purchase through real estate agents, make these deals a very viable option for Buyers. They need to buy in a transaction which needs to take their specific challenges into consideration. That’s what “Deals on Terms” do! That’s also why Buyers compete strongly for any deal available, as it’s often the only quick path to ownership and avoid renting, while housing market prices fly by to sometimes unreachable heights.

Investments on Terms For Sellers:

Many Sellers find themselves left out of the market for no fault of their own or their house. Just too few Buyers. We market the property to many more qualified Buyers.

They are effective for Sellers also because many times without fault of their own or of their home, they are stuck with a property sitting in the market with nothing in sight. The market itself is constantly described as a Sellers market, because there are so many Buyers who want to close on a home. However, many conventional deals fall through because of the way the lending industry processes applications, Deals on Terms restore confidence in home-selling by opening up the market to a much larger pool of strong, worthy and motivated Buyers. Not all applicants pass our Buyer-quality screening process, but the market offers so many better and faster opportunities. That’s what you can correctly call Deals on Terms a Sellers’ market.

NEXT: Definition of Investors on Terms

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Investors on terms
Proxima Investors Buy and Sell Homes on Terms throughout New England and Beyond
Creative deals that effectively address challenges that make the sale of a home difficult or the process purchasing a home longer than the market changes and never happens…

Investors on Terms: Introduction

This entry is part 1 of 2 in the series Investors on Terms

PROXIMA INVESTORS are Investors on Terms!

Our primary objective in the course of our real estate investing business is to leverage deal terms to achieve a solution for Sellers, Buyers and all involved in our deals getting them done!

Hadley MA: Rent to Own homes by Proxima Investors

by Proxima Investors of Northborough, MA

Homes get sold and Sellers succeed. Buyers are able to Purchase. Everyone gets what they want and need, are paid and everyone is happy and able to move on.

Not many know exactly what a deal on terms is; it seems useful and maybe even necessary to clarify what we mean by being Investors on Terms.

A small series of articles as posts in this blog will attempt to explain how Investing on Terms works. Keep in mind that it may widely differ from what and how other investors use similar methods; they may be in different niches, states, deal with different properties and types of Sellers and Buyers.

This is just the INTRODUCTION so you know what it’s about.

We will start by describing the CONTEXT which is important to define the role and the activity of Investors on Terms.

Then we will go straight to our own DEFINITION of Investors on Terms with details about the meaning of the term.

Some EXAMPLES in the following blog post will be very useful to understand the concept of Investments on Terms in practical terms to see what it’s like in a realistic environment.

What do Investors on Terms mean for Sellers, Buyers and their properties and how they affect the situation of all investment PARTIES.

PROXIMA INVESTORS, Deals on Terms and how they fit in our business model of real estate investing in the residential niche.

Our FINAL THOUGHTS about Investors and Investments on Terms will follow to go back to the whole picture and conclude our explanations.

Finally, space for QUESTIONS and COMMENTS, which are a great way to get a better understanding of the idea of Investments on Terms and its applications in individual situations.

As a bonus, we will progressively compile a GLOSSARY of the Investors on Terms niche for quick reference with useful links to more info.

NEXT: Context of Investors on Terms

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Investors on terms
Proxima Investors Buy and Sell Homes on Terms

Pocket listings and new rules for Realtors!

Realtors have to list a property on the MLS within 24h of any marketing effort!

Pocket listings limit the marketability of a property and may fetch the seller a lower price. Sellers should think twice about allowing the practice and do due diligence to find out if that’s in the cards for their listing. Alternatively, look elsewhere to sell!


The National Association of Realtors’ new rules about private listings


Mandatory listing on MLS

Homes are not always listed on the open market as often and quickly as they should, especially in a low inventory situations like in these days.

Very interesting news from the NAR (National Association of Realtors). Realtors will no longer be allowed to market a property privately for an extended period of time.
Within just 24h (one business day to be precise) of the start of any marketing efforts, they have to list the properties under contract on the MLS. Flyers, email blasts, phone calls, any online or offline marketing effort triggers the countdown to the requirement to open market the property.

Private listings/Pocket listings

These listings are called private listings (or even exclusive listings) because properties are marketed only to a limited number of buyers, generally controlled by the listing agent. They are also known as “pocket listings” to describe how the listing is hidden from the general public (kept in their pocket), and listed publicly only if no private buyers are found.

Opening up to the market

It’s pretty big news because it aims at opening some properties to a broader pool of buyers (and their agents) much to the benefit of many in the market, professionals and homeowners selling. Private listings have been used and abused by some realtors, despite having committed to the NAR code of ethics.

Why do pocket listings

There are multiple reasons for this practice; the one that stands out is the attempt of listing agents at collecting a full commission, instead of having to split with another agent representing a buyer who found the listing on the MLS. Thanks to buyers’ lists that agents build in many ways, including by setting up open houses for that primary purpose, listing agents can find a buyer quickly, which is sometimes one of the sellers’ goals.

Listing agents are incentivized to these practices by handsome and easy monetary rewards.

More importantly, if they have the listing (representing the seller) AND find the buyer, they net the whole commission. The downside for agents is minimal, as the full commission easily exceeds the loss due to a likely lower price. However, that violates the fiduciary relationship between agent and their seller. It’s a poorly kept secret in the industry, but most sellers are completely unaware. It’s sellers who lose the most as for every dollar they lose in the sale due to the restricted number of buyers competing for the purchase of the property, the loss is split in 94% for the seller and only 6% for the agent, but there is no commission split with a buyers’ agent.

Example: Agents rather sell a property for $90 and get 6% by selling it to a buyer from their private list only and pocket $5.40 (6% of $90), than market on the MLS for $100 and sell to a buyer who is represented  and is owed half the commission, therefore pocketing only $3 (6%/2=3% of $100). If the price is $900,000/$1,000,000 which is not that uncommon in states like Massachusetts.

We will have to wait and see if and how this is enforced because it breaks a fairly common practice.
It would also affect some showings that genuinely require private marketing, as in the case of celebrities.
For those realtors who complain by saying that it’s their clients who require such type of listing, they should be reminded that they advise their clients and if they informed them that they could be underselling the

Sellers need to be made aware of all the best options available in a professional and ethical way and timing.

property, many would probably prefer an open listing.
Sellers now have more and better opportunities to sell faster and for more.
Buyers have more listings to choose from, especially if they have a buyers’ agent representing them.
Listing Agents miss out on the opportunity to get paid the whole commission without having to split.
Buyers’ agents have more opportunities for their clients.
So to summarize, this is bad news for listing agents, who emerge as the losers, but only those who regularly used this technique. Everyone else wins, but only if the rule is effectively enforced.

This sounds like one of many attempts at disciplining industry practices like others in the past, often largely ineffective as workarounds are always found when the monetary incentive is often so high in real estate.

Winners and Losers:

Listing agents LOSE, because they lose control over the marketing for that listing and potentially the full commission.

Buyers agents WIN because they have more opportunities on the market to find their clients a home to purchase and therefore to earn a share of the commission.

Listing sellers WIN because their property opens up to a much larger pool of potentially bidding buyers.

Other sellers LOSE because more properties are released on the open market to compete with theirs.

Buyers WIN with more homes available to choose from and possibly lower prices thanks to the more competitive environment.

Buyers on listing agents lists LOSE because they may have to compete with more buyers.

For more and a point of view more focused on Sellers, read here!

Proxima Investors are not Realtors nor Real Estate Agents and do not charge listing fees to their Sellers providing the best return for their important asset, their home.

Blue Espresso!

Blue Espresso like selling houses fast with rent to own programs
Espresso in blue…Rent to Own also in blue!

Blue Espresso! Quick to brew, quick to drink, caffeinated enough to give you speed for a while!

Sounds very much like US, when we sell a home on RENT TO OWN!

It’s a much faster market than the conventional market where realtors and FSBOs typically operate and where things seem to happen when they happen, just jogging along hoping (sometimes praying) that things move…

We offer our properties to extremely motivated buyers who WANT to move FAST and who are in competition with each other. The house is probably the only one that works for them.

That’s why we can pick the most deserving buyers and it’s just unfortunate that many times we have to leave out very worthy families from buying because we can only sell one home at a time…

It’s a very energetic market, highly exciting and rewarding at a personal level, especially when you look at how we can QUICKLY get a seller unstuck and a Buyer in a home they can call their own instead of renting forever and/or wasting so much in a property that will probably never be the one where their kids are raised to when they leave for college or on their own way…

Selling haunted homes in Massachusetts

Disclose or not disclose?

Since it’s Halloween, let’s see what the law says about haunted homes, murder, suicide, paranormal activity, which happened or, allegedly, are happening in the building in Massachusetts.

Stigmatized properties for sale in Massachusetts and Sellers’ disclosures

When Selling a home, a Seller has to abide by many rules and guidelines. Some of these are pertinent to facts that may affect the building, and in turn the transaction, and that the law may or may not require a seller to disclose.

A stigmatized property is a property in which paranormal activity is reported or suspected, or where heinous events have occurred, such as murder, suicide or both. The law also considers an association of the property a certain illness, but that has lost much of its impact nowadays, so it’s more about the former occurrences.

Each individual, seller or buyer, has a different sensitivity to the issue of stigmatized homes and for many it’s not an issue at all. The issue of disclosure of these events and situations could add uncertainty in a transaction if not clear.

Scary ghostly figures in haunted building..

There are already so many hurdles, like inspections, appraisals, concessions, fees, assists, waivers, endless negotiations and other disclosures that having to reveal a “paranormal presence” in a house could jeopardize a done deal by spooking even very motivated buyers.

The creaky floors could be something easy to fix and not likely to hold up a Purchase & Sale, but should they be thought to be due to paranormal activity and not having been disclosed by the seller, it could create an insurmountable issue. If it emerges after signatures have been exchanged it could provide a solid reason for legal claims based on lack of disclosure.


Unlike California, where you can go back 3 years and more for psychologically impacting events on the property, it’s not the case in Massachusetts! The law clearly states that, as it doesn’t fall in the category of material facts which have to be disclosed, it’s unnecessary “to disclose the fact that the property was the site of “…felony, suicide or homicide” or “…that the real property has been the site of an alleged parapsychological or supernatural phenomenon.”


No disclosure of any stigma on a property for sale is legally necessary in Massachusetts for a Seller, but for a Landlord or Lessor also.

Buyer Beware and due diligence


The general “Caveat Emptor” (Buyer beware) rule applies here for home buyers and buying investors, who are expected to perform their due diligence in general, but especially with regards to this specific issue if they’re sensitive to such a property. If you’re a buyer, it would be advisable to talk to neighbors, research public records, and just ask clear and direct questions, especially if there’s a doubt, maybe rumors, maybe a feeling.

If home buyers ask clear questions about any stigma on the property, the seller cannot misrepresent or make false statement without giving cause of action, with half-truths also providing an opportunity for a successful lawsuit.


What sellers can do, is to provide information voluntarily. If they so choose, it’s their prerogative, but NOT obligation and buyers can’t claim it as a right to have that information disclosed.


If the seller is represented by an agent, in the same way no disclosure is necessary. Due to the fiduciary nature of the relationship between agent and seller, the agent cannot provide the information voluntarily, unlike the sellers, and unless the sellers themselves authorize or instruct the agent to do so. The agent can always decline to represent the seller or terminate an agreement already in place if the information emerges after establishing the contractual relationship.


If an investor, like us at Proxima Investors, is involved in the sale, depending on the type of underlying deal, the investor is subject to the same disclosure rules as the seller, holding equitable interest in the property.


At Proxima Investors we have not come across a situation of stigmatized properties where it was a concern. However, since Massachusetts and New England in general, are old states with many antique and beautiful homes which have witnessed a lot. Homes can have a long and known history and the creaks and noises of old homes can be unsettling and inspire stories passed down over centuries, and sometimes made more “interesting”. Think about Salem in the 1600s when Massachusetts was a very populous state with lots going on. It’s only a matter of time that we will run into this issue. We already have invested in old and antique homes, which can be difficult to sell in this market, and we love them. Should the issue at some point arise, we believe that it should be dealt with on a case-by-case basis, as property stigmatizing events and situations have a different psychological impact depending on their uniqueness and the specific circumstances.

The bottomline for us is that we don’t have to disclose, but if there’s a particularly unsettling story linked to the house, we would probably not invest in it anyway…

Proxima Investors of Massachusetts are not attorneys and we do not provide legal advice and only state our opinions. Check with your attorney of choice before making any decision based on the content of this article. A useful resource can be found by clicking the link below to the relevant section of the state law: Real estate transactions; disclosure; psychologically impacted property.

Massachusetts Law Reference:

Home exterior, front yard with spookie Halloween decorations in the front yard


PhotoVideo of Rent to Own Single Family Home in Sterling, Massachusetts

This PhotoVideo will give you a good feel for the mansion-like home that we’re offering on a rent to own sale contract (we call it lease-purchase, which is short for lease-with-option-to-purchase, rather than just a less sophisticated rent-to-own), the great spaces and many rooms, the upkeep and style, the neighborhood and surrounding grounds, easily by watching a quick 2 minute video…Enjoy!

Interior and Exterior images of Rent to Own Home in Sterling, MA

Rent to Own/Lease-Purchase in Sterling, Massachusetts

Lots to discover in this beautiful home with rooms and areas for many different purposes, in family friendly Sterling Massachusetts, available also on Rent to Own/Lease-Purchase.

Rent to own in Sterling MA
No Banks, No Mortgage, Down Payment to move in



















The QR code brings you straight to the dedicated section on the website for more pictures, photos, images and information.

Call Denise Rossi @ 617-999-0269 for all the details about this Rent to Own Home  and our rent to Own programs.

Sterling-MA: Rent to Own Home Images

Rent to own in Sterling MA

No Banks, No Mortgage, No Credit, Down Payment to move in and secure the deal to close when ready at locked in price.


Above is one of the many bathrooms in this home, complete with bathtub and walk-in shower. It’s the master bathroom serving the master bedroom conveniently situated on the first floor.

In this composition is also part of the beautiful brickwork at the front of the house, with a grand lawn to separate it from quiet Sandy Ridge Rd, in Sterling, Massachusetts.

Next is the geographical location in Massachusetts and Worcester County, within easy reach of Tax-Free New Hampshire, the city of Worcester well connected to the rest of Massachusetts and its capital, Boston.

The QR code brings you straight to the dedicated section on the website for more pictures, photos, images and information.

For more info and photos check back here and/or click here: Sterling MA Home for Rent-to-Own/Lease-Purchase (our Buyers’ dedicated website) or our main website Proxima Investors.