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An owner-occupant refers to a person who resides in a property they own. This could be a single-family home, a condo, or an apartment within the certain purchased premises. Owning and living in the property typically qualifies the owner for certain benefits like tax deductions and lower interest rates.


The phonetics for the word “Owner-Occupant” can be written as: “ˈoʊnər ˈɔkyəpənt”

Key Takeaways

  1. Owner-Occupant refers to the legal status meaning a property owner physically resides in a certain property they own as their primary place of residence. This can include single-family homes, condominiums, or multi-unit properties.
  2. There are certain benefits to being an Owner-Occupant. These often include lower interest rates on mortgages, tax advantages, and certain legal protections. For example, an Owner-Occupant typically receives a homestead exemption which reduces the property tax burden.
  3. Owner-Occupant status can also impact real estate transactions. Some properties, particularly those owned by government entities or banks following foreclosure, may give priority or incentives to Owner-Occupant buyers over investors. This is often done to promote neighborhood stability and owner occupancy.


The term Owner-Occupant is noteworthy in the realm of business/finance as it refers to a person who owns and resides in a property. This term is essential for various reasons. Financial institutions, for instance, typically offer better mortgage terms to owner-occupants because they are more likely to maintain the property well and keep abreast with mortgage payments, reducing the risk for lenders. On tax matters, owner-occupants are often eligible for certain deductions and exemptions. Real estate policies also sometimes favor owner-occupants; for example, in some foreclosure auctions, a period is set aside exclusively for bids from potential owner-occupants to encourage neighborhood stability. Understanding this term is therefore crucial for homeowners, investors, and policy makers.


Owner-occupant refers to an individual or entity that owns and also resides within a property. This term is most commonly used in the real estate sector, indicating individuals who are both the homeowner and the primary residence. The purpose of this concept is twofold: fostering stronger community relations and assisting in the financial viability of owning a property.An owner-occupant often takes more care of the property they reside in than a tenant might, thus contributing to a more appealing and well-maintained community. They tend to have vested interest in local issues, neighborhood security, and community development, which leads to stronger, stable communities. Financially, owner-occupants can avail benefits from numerous mortgage programs offering favorable terms to those who occupy the properties they purchase. This might include lower interest rates, lower down payments, or tax deductions, which can significantly offset the cost of homeownership, making it a more attractive and feasible option.


1. Homeownership: The most common example of an owner-occupant situation is a person who buys a residential property and lives in it as their primary residence. The person is the owner of the house, and they occupy the house themselves. The owner-occupant could have purchased the house as an investment but also benefit from living in it. It’s different from an investment property, where the owner doesn’t live in the property, and it’s rented out to tenants generating income for the owner.2. Small Business Owners: In the small business world, an example could be a restaurant owner who owns the building where the restaurant is located and operates the business onsite. This offers the owner control over the property and can save on operational costs in the long run.3. Commercial Real Estate: Another example could be a professional, like a doctor or an attorney, who purchases the office building where their practice is located. By doing this, they’re not only investing in real estate, but they’re also securing a permanent location for their business operations. This strategy can provide financial benefits such as tax advantages, building equity, and potential rental income from other tenants in the building.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

What is an Owner-Occupant?

An owner-occupant is an individual or business entity that purchases a property and uses it as a primary residence or for business operations.

Is there a difference between an Owner-Occupant and an Investor?

Yes, there is. An owner-occupant lives in or uses the property they buy, while an investor typically purchases properties to rent them out or to sell them for profit.

Are there any advantages to being an Owner-Occupant?

Yes, there are several advantages. Owner-occupants can potentially benefit from certain financing options, lower down payments, and increased housing stability. They are sometimes preferred in property sales as they may take better care of the property since they plan to live there.

Is there any special financing available for Owner-Occupant properties?

Yes, many lenders and mortgage programs have special financing for owner-occupant properties. This can include lower interest rates, smaller down payments, or more favorable loan terms.

I’m a small business owner. Can my business property be classified as Owner-Occupant?

Yes, as long as you, as the business owner, are using the purchased property for your business operation, it can be classified as owner-occupant.

How long does one need to occupy the property to be considered an Owner-Occupant?

The standard period is at least one year, although this can vary based on local regulations or loan terms.

What penalties can occur if an owner-occupant doesn’t occupy the property as agreed?

Penalties can include fines or legal action, including foreclosure if the property was purchased with a mortgage. It’s important to fully understand the terms of any owner-occupier agreement or loan before purchase.

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