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What should you look for in a rental agreement?

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But before you sign on the dotted line and commit to an apartment lease, you’ll want to look out for these things in the contract and fully understand what you’re agreeing to and the expectations and rule that go with your apartment.

Here are some tips to understand better your lease for houses for rent or condos for rent and ensure you’ll enjoy your living conditions for the duration of the contract:  
  • Renewal Clauses: Every rental lease agreement must list the parties to the agreement, which would be you and the tenant along with the property address. Maybe one want to state the term of the lease, which can be starting off the month with a particular end date on the automatically continuing lease that remains in full force and effect. Your lease or rental agreement should specify the amount of rent, when it is due (typically, the first of the month) and how it is to be paid or any charge if a rent cheque bounces.
     
  • Security deposit clause: Your rental agreement or lease should require the tenant to put the security deposit that matches one month’s rent or more, depending on the value of furnishings and repair costs, if something goes wrong. Some states require the landlord to place the tenant’s security deposits in a separate interest- bearing account and at the end of the lease, return the deposit and the interest to the tenant, less any damages. Make sure you understand the law and regulations in your area.
     
  • Length of lease and renewal: Your lease agreement may be for as little as three months as long as a year, or for some other amount of time. Make sure whatever date you’re obliged to move out by works for you and ask if there’s any flexibility if you think you may need it. You also want to carefully understand and if your lease can be terminated, what happened if you have to break your lease for some reason and what your renewal options are.
     
  • Subleasing clause: At some point, most of the landlords have a tenant who wants to share the apartment with a friend or stranger. To avoid this issue, make sure your lease agreement includes a subletting clause that requires the tenant to obtain your written permission before turning the rental over to someone else. When the tenant will ask you to sublet the property, you will be in a position to decline or accept their offer.


     
  • The Pet policy: Don’t be surprised to find landlords who are wary of our furry friends. So you need to be certain that your apartment lease allows pets and understand what kind of animal, or what breed etc. So be sure your lease or the rental agreement is clear on the subject.
     
  • Repairs and maintenance: Your best defense against rent - withholding hassles and other problems (especially over security deposit) is to clearly set out your and the tenants responsibilities for repair and maintenance in your lease or the rental agreement includes: (a) the tenant’s responsibility to keep the rental premises clean and sanitary and to pay for any damage caused by his or neglect, (b) restrictions on tenant alterations and repairs, such as adding installing a burglar alarm system, built-in dishwasher or painting walls without permission.
     
  • Other Restrictions: Be sure your lease or rental agreement complies with all the relevant laws including the rent control ordinances, health and safety codes, occupancy rules and the anti discrimination laws. The main key is the state law, limit for setting up the security deposit notice requirement for entering the apartments on rent, tenants’ right to sublet or bring in additional roommates rules for changing or ending a tenancy and specific disclosure requirements such as past flooding in the rental unit.
     

Any other restrictions, such as limits on the type of business a tenant may run from home, should also be split out in the lease or the rental agreement. Important rules and regulations covering parking and common areas should also be specified in the lease or rental agreement. Include these important clauses in your rental lease agreement for the apartments on rent or houses for rent.

Must Remember: An apartment lease is legal, binding contract, so make sure you read the entire thing and understand it before signing your name and agreeing to the terms.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: JACK WAUGH
I am a freelancer software engineer work independently. I like article writing, politics, news & media.

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