A rental lease is a legally binding contract between the tenant and landlord. The agreement sets out the conditions upon which they can lease their property to a third party. This is the most popular type. It specifies how long you will stay in the property, the amount you have to pay and the amount of notice you have to give. To avoid losing your possessions in the event of the eviction process, damage caused by other tenants, or your property being taken by a new owner it is recommended that you obtain an agreement in writing from your landlord prior to making the move.
The intention behind the lease agreement between a landlord and tenant is to safeguard both the landlord as well as the tenant. The lease agreement defines who is able to be able to do what with the rental property and what amount each party has to contribute for its upkeep.
You must carefully read the lease before signing it. If you come across something you do not understand you don’t understand, ask your landlord to explain it prior to signing.
In a rental lease agreement there are three major kinds of clauses:
1.) Rent and terms of payment
2) Termination, term, and renewal
3) Damage deposit
Pay and Rent Terms This is the amount you must pay, the date it’s due and whether or not you are willing to pay any security.
Actual term of the rental The length of your lease will be in effect, renewal conditions, and if there are any alternatives or possibilities for an early termination on the part of either party.
Changes in ownership: This clause details what happens to your lease if your landlord wants to sell their house or building.
Damage deposit The amount you will need to make up in advance in the event there is damage to your property. Any deductions from this deposit should also be noted in your contract.
Utilities: If utilities are included in the rent or if they are an extra cost.
Maintenance: Are you accountable for keeping the yard clean and cleaning up the pool? Will your landlord expect you to fix any broken items or break, or is everything left to them?
Also, you should keep a copy of the rental agreement with your local municipality of the rental agreement. This will prove that there an agreement for renting in place, should you ever need the courtroom to prove that it was in place.
Be sure to record the time period for which this document must be submitted. Every town has its own protocol on how long data like such as this will be kept on file. You may have to submit a new lease when you make significant changes to the terms of your rental agreement.
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Make sure you keep a copy of your rental contract in a safe location. Also, make a list with all the key elements of your rental agreement and ensure that it is updated during the duration of your stay. This will ensure that you are able to prove your claim if anything happens. It’s a good idea if you take photos of the property as well as any damage.
This document is a safeguard for both landlord and tenants. But the landlord may not always be open to talks. If you discover that things are getting heated and your landlord has agreed to revise some terms (such as raising rent rates or changing damage deposit amounts), write these things down in your updated list. Noting the changes can help you recall them in the event you decide to renew your lease, or re-lease another house. It may also give you the ability to negotiate.