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Sunday, 21 May 2023 11:20

Simple Terms to Include in a Lease Agreement

Having a good understanding of how to write an effective lease agreement is a very important part of property management. When you own a property that you plan to rent, it is vital to establish ground rules and have a practical document laying out the landlord-tenant relationship. Ignoring these items can cause disruption and confusion between you and your tenant. 

Knowing what you need to include is vital regardless of how long this document is. We have put together some of the most important terms and conditions to include in your next lease agreement to help cover all of your bases. 

Types of Lease Agreements, Comprehensive or Simple?

There are plenty of different types of lease agreements that can be made, but for the most part, they fall into two categories. They are either comprehensive or simple lease agreements. A rock-solid agreement will contain numerous provisions that specify what each party agrees to do.

Comprehensive lease agreements take these provisions and explain them to the fullest extent. Most of the time, attorneys are hired to prepare a comprehensive agreement which is typically several pages long. Each condition of a comprehensive agreement is spelled out in-depth, leaving no room for interpretation other than what is intended.

In contrast, a simple lease agreement can be just a few pages or as short as a single page. Simple lease agreements are typically between people that know one another. These agreements can be copied straight from the internet and contain simple provisions.

Terms of a Simple Lease Agreement

1. Names of All Tenants

Every adult living in a rental unit should be named as a tenant and be required to sign the lease or rental agreement. This holds each tenant responsible for all terms of the lease. If any of them break the lease for any reason, this gives the landlord legal precedent to seek the entire rent from any of the tenants. 

2. Occupancy Limits

If you would like to limit the occupancy of your property, it is important to put that in writing. This guarantees your right to determine who lives on your property. 

Tenant screening is a huge part of checking into your tenants to protect your property. This clause gives you grounds to evict a tenant who moves in with someone that you didn't agree to let live in a unit.

3. Tenancy Term

The time frame should be clear. It can either be a rental agreement or a fixed-term lease. Typically rental agreements are month-to-month and self-renew unless terminated. Leases are more long-term and usually last a year. 

4. Rent, Deposits, and Fees

Setting rent and how it is collected is a top priority, and should be included in a lease or rental agreement. The amount should be specified, along with any fees or deposits. The amount, due date, and how it's paid should all be very clear to avoid confusion.

In addition to rent, policies around fees and deposits should be crystal clear. Especially around the use and return of security deposits. 

As always, it is important to check with state and local laws to ensure that you know how much you are allowed to get. Also, to avoid confusion, your lease or rental agreement should be clear on how you may use the security deposit and when or how you will return the deposit and account for deductions.

5. Repairs and Maintenance

Terms in your lease agreement are simply ways to keep from getting caught holding the bag if your tenant messes up or moves out unexpectedly. A repairs and maintenance clause is used to make sure that it is clear whose responsibility it is to take care of any repairs or maintenance on the property.

6. Pets

Agreements around pets should state whether or not you allow pets and what types are allowed. You should also specify that if the pet becomes a nuisance, you have the right to terminate the lease. Declare that the tenant is liable for any pet damage. Indicate whether you charge a fee for pets.

Furthermore, rental/lease agreements are a vital piece of protection for both the landlord and the tenant. Making sure that these terms and conditions, along with any others that you can think may come up, is imperative when writing such an important document. 

Leave It to Asheville Phoenix Properties

It takes time to write a rental or lease agreement, and it is simple to overlook important clauses. These documents are legally binding, and if you or your tenant make a mistake, it could lead to a lot of issues. Working with a property management company to create a strong lease or rental agreement can speed up this laborious process.

Asheville Phoenix Properties is a leading Asheville real estate management business that can assist by handling many of the problems associated with renting out properties all year. We function as a liaison between you and your renters, handling service requests and ensuring that the necessary steps are completed to establish a positive landlord-tenant relationship.

We can assist owners and renters by managing every aspect of a rental property thanks to our more than 20 years of real estate management expertise. Contact us today!