Tips for Drafting a House Rental Agreement
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Tips for Drafting a House Rental Agreement

A well drafted house rental agreement helps to maintain the smooth relationship between a land lord and a tenant, besides safeguarding the land lord against the defaulting tenant and protecting the tenant from the unreasonable land lord as well.

Tips for Drafting a House Rental Agreement

Creating any document in a written format is to have a permanent record for the subject matter of the document, besides helping to dispel or clear the doubts that may arise in future in the subject matter of the document. Above all the written document ensures that the parties or signatories to the document cannot go back on their terms what they have already agreed to in a clear cut manner.

A house rental agreement is a written contract entered into between a land lord and a tenant and the terms of it governs their legal relationship.

If you cannot afford to buy a house, you have no other option except to rent a house with the help of a realtor. However, before proceeding to rent a house and enter into a rental agreement with a land lord, you may have to check up:

  • Whether the house you are renting has all the amenities you are looking for: number of rooms, living space, condition of the building, garage for your vehicles and lawns etc.
  • Whether you can afford to pay the rent as demanded by the land lord.
  • Whether you can strictly adhere to the terms and conditions or the obligations imposed by the land lord while renting his house.
  • Whether you can afford to pay the security deposit as demanded by the land lord.
  • Whether the house you propose to rent is subject to the rent control laws of the state in which the rental house is situate. For example, if you are residing in the State of California, there are rent control areas. Hence, before drafting the rental agreement you have to ascertain whether the rental house is subject to rent control.

If you are quite clear and satisfied with all the above mentioned conditions and you are confident and damn sure that you can enter into a house rental agreement with the land lord, the following tips may be quite useful for you before entering into a rental agreement with the land lord:

  • Since each US state has separate laws meant for land lord and the tenant, it is always good to engage a lawyer or at least consult a lawyer before drafting a house rental agreement.
  • Before drafting a house rental agreement, it is also good to consult a couple of legal web sites like www.RocketLawyer.com, or www.Lawinfo.com; in particular the RocketLawyer.com even helps you on line to draft your house rental agreement by a do-it-yourself method according to the information you provide on line.
  • In countries like India, a house rental agreement covering a period of only 11 months need not be registered; however, if you enter into a house rental agreement exceeding 11 months, it must be compulsorily registered. In case of any rental dispute that may arise between a land lord and a tenant, an unregistered rental agreement exceeding 11 months will not be received in evidence.
  • Each house rental agreement should contain the details of the rental house in unequivocal terms in a separate schedule, if necessary, along with the details of survey number, if any, the door number, name of the street, name of the county and the name of the State etc.
  • Each house rental agreement should contain the complete details about the land lord and the tenant: their names and their complete address etc.
  • Each house rental agreement should contain the details about the date on which the agreement is signed, the period of lease for which the rental house is leased or let out, monthly rent to be paid to the land lord by the tenant, the name of the currency, actual amount to be mentioned in number as well as in words, the mode of payment, monthly deadline within which the monthly rent has to be paid etc. For example, the tenant should pay the monthly house rent for every completed month, in the succeeding month on or before 5 the day.
  • If the land lord has any manager to look after his property (house) and receive the rent from the tenant, his name and address should also be included in the house rental agreement.
  • The obligations and conditions imposed by the land lord on the tenant should be clearly stated in the house rental agreement. For example: the tenant should not sub let the rental premises; the tenant should not have any pet, like cat or dog in the rental premises; the tenant should keep the rental premises clean and safe etc; if the tenant fails to follow the obligations imposed by the land lord, he is liable to be evicted.
  • The house rental agreement should also contain the details of security deposit, if any, paid by the tenant along with the details of refund of the deposit to the tenant within a stipulated period; the rental agreement should also contain any other condition for the refund of deposit: for example, if the tenant causes any damages to the rental premises or any damage to the plumber works etc, the cost of the actual damage caused will be deducted from the security deposit etc and the balance will be refunded to the tenant.
  • The exclusive rights of the land lord to visit and inspect his property (rental premises) should also be included in the rental agreement.
  • If the tenant defaults from paying the house rent for a specific term, say continuously for a period of three months or fails to follow the obligations imposed by the land lord, the land lord may take steps to evict the tenant by issuing a three days or five days or seven days legal notice to the tenant (in the State of Florida, a three days legal notice and in the State of California, a five days legal notice).Such details must be specifically included in the house rent agreement.
  • The land lord as well as the tenant should realize that the rental agreement is a permanent record that governs their legal relationship and it serves as a vital legal document in the court of law for a land lord to evict a defaulting tenant and it equally serves the tenant to recover his security deposit from a land lord who prevaricates in refunding the security deposit by filing a suit in a small cause court. Therefore, both the land lord and the tenant should see that the rental agreement is drafted in the proper format as prescribed by the rules and regulations of each State.

If a land lord or a tenant takes care of drafting of the house rental agreement by following the above tips before renting a house, it will take care of the land lord as well as the tenant as follows:-

  • A well drafted house rental agreement safeguards the property of the land lord, besides helping him to evict a defaulting tenant by filing an eviction suit.
  • A well drafted house rental agreement protects a hapless tenant to recover his security deposit from an unscrupulous land lord, besides helping a genuine tenant from getting evicted from the rental house by an unreasonable land lord.
  • A well drafted house rental agreement helps to maintain a smooth and conflict-free relationship between a land lord and his tenant.

References:

www.RocketLawyer.com

www.RentLaw.com

www.howtodothings.com

www.eHow.com

 

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Comments (2)
Uma Shankari

Helpful tips. Thoroughly researched.

very informative and useful article.thanks

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