Rental agreements exist for a variety of items such as residential housing, storage facilities, furniture and equipment. A residential rental agreement is one of the most common types of rental agreements. Before you enter into a residential rental agreement, you need a basic understanding of rental agreement rules and restrictions.
A residential rental agreement is an agreement between the owner of a property and the person who wishes to rent the property. The rental agreement is a legally-binding contract that clearly lists all the financial and residential requirements of both the property owner and the renter. Rental agreements help protect the renter from wrongful eviction, undisclosed charges and repair issues.
A rental agreement is written for a specified period of time. The start and end date of a lease are clearly written in the rental agreement. Apartments generally have a minimum lease term of six months, while the minimum term on a house might be one year.
A residential rental agreement includes items such as the rental amount, term of the lease, amount of security deposit due, pet policy, responsibility for repairs and the process for eviction. The lease may also include special considerations such as the inclusion of furnishings or a limit on the number of occupants.
Before you enter into a rental agreement, be certain that the property, location and price are what you want. Rental agreements often contain stiff penalties for early termination. Some rental agreements require the renter to continue to pay the full amount of rent each month unless someone else rents the property. Most rental agreements contain a clause that allows the property owner to retain the security deposit if you terminate the lease early.
Renters often think that once a rental agreement is in place, the property owner is not allowed to enter the property except to make repairs. A rental agreement provides a detail of the property owner's right to inspect the property. Inspections are usually restricted to normal business hours and only when advance notice is provided to the renter. The owner can enter without notice in the event of an emergency such as a fire or gas leak. Property insurance paid by the owner does not cover losses sustained for any contents belonging to the renter. A renter's insurance policy is the best way to ensure your belongings are protected.
Before entering into any legal agreement, have someone review the document. A real estate professional is a good choice to review a rental agreement. A professional review might prevent you from making a very costly mistake.