A solid leasing agreement forms the basis of an agreement between any landlord and their tenants. But what makes it important is that legally defines both the landlord tenant’s responsibilities.
The importance of a solid lease agreement can’t be understated so we at Halcyon Real Estate have put together this article to help you understand how to build a clear lease that protects both you, and your tenants.
Understanding the lease agreement is critical for both the landlord and the tenants. As the agreement outlines the obligations and responsibilities of both the landlord and the apartment’s renters.
A signed leasing agreement is also fundamental in any legal proceedings. It acts as proof of the agreement and of all terms and conditions between both parties.
An experienced and reputable property management company is the best option to draft the lease. They have the expertise to draft a lease that protects all parties involved and the experience to edit it to reflect the landlords’ personal circumstances.
But a quick search online offers a landlord several different options for lease templates. While it might be a quick and easy solution, we highly recommend against it.
Often these templates don’t cover every element required in a lease.
Part of getting your property rent-ready is understanding the elements of a lease and how they impact your property agreement. Although clauses may appear different, the essential details will hardly change from lease to lease. These basic features include:
The full names of both the landlord and the tenants should appear together with other personal data such as the name of the rental property, the address of the property, the door number of the apartment building.
The amount of rent to be paid by the tenant should be stated clearly and correctly in both words and figures to avoid any miscommunication.
If you’re collecting other costs, such as pet deposits, it is advisable to keep them in a separate clause.
The rent due date must also be clearly stipulated in the agreement to avoid any form of confusion and ensure that the tenants understand when their rent is due.
The term in which the renter will be using the unit should be clearly stated in the agreement to ensure that the tenants do not extend their tenancy without the landlord’s say.
Signatures from both the landlord and the tenants are crucial. They confirm all parties clearly read and understood all the terms and conditions of the agreement.
Different landlords have different expectations when it comes to their tenants and so each lease agreement is likely to have some subtle differences. So, when you are drafting your lease, you must tailor it to your needs.
Below are some provisions that a landlord can amend, provided they are within the landlord-tenant laws of the State:
The landlord should decide on their subletting policy. If you want more direct control over identifying your property’s inhabitants, then perhaps you will forbid subletting.
But if you like, you can allow the renter to sublet if he or she submits a formal request to you first. In either case, the subletting terms should be clearly laid out in the lease agreement.
It’s crucial to respect the right of a renter to quiet enjoyment of the rental space. So, a landlord has required to lay out specific instructions on when they can gain entry to the property clearly in the lease.
State law may also impact property access. So please check this before deciding on your access policy.
State law requires all landlords to make the rental units habitable. But tenants should also have well laid out obligations to fulfill.
These can be anything from reasonable property maintenance in emptying trash in proper receptacles to maintaining an acceptable degree of peace and quiet.
Regardless, any obligation a landlord wants their tenant to fulfill must be laid out in the lease agreement.
If you allow the leasing agreement to be broken for any reason, it should be clearly stated in the agreement. But landlords should be aware that there are various reasons why a tenant can legally break a lease.
For example, if your tenant is called to military duty, is a victim of domestic violence, or experiences landlord harassment.
Under State laws, any tenant has the right to see exactly where their security deposits reside. Should the account bear interest, the tenant should also know the interest rate.
As managing a security deposit can be tricky, it is best to outline the specific conditions regarding the deposit in the lease. Such a condition would be defining normal wear and tear or tenant damages.
Disclosures are a vital part of the lease. Both federal and state law demands that all lease agreements disclose the following information:
The landlord is expected by the law to disclose to the apartment renters the information on bedbugs and how to prevent and control them.
Properties built before 1978 need to disclose to the willing renters the existence of lead-based paint and the danger it might cause to their health.
The landlord should disclose the presence of radon gas in an area to the renters of rental units to safeguard their health.
Renters should be made aware of the unit is in an area that is prone to flooding in the lease agreement.
A detailed and precise lease agreement between the renters and the landlord is vital as it makes it easy to avoid any disputes or inconveniences. It also helps the landlord to avoid unnecessary court battles with the tenants.
To protect your investment in real estate, you can rely on the services of the experienced and reputable team at Halcyon Real Estate Services.
With us at the helm, you can be assured of peace of mind knowing your property is in the best hands in the State.