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The Landlord’s Guide to a House Rental Agreement

System - Tuesday, July 19, 2022
Property Management Blog

How do landlords successfully walk the fine line between enjoying good tenant relationships and ensuring the security of their investment?

With rising rental prices and continuing economic uncertainty, smart landlords understand the importance of having a solid house rental agreement in place. You'll agree that communicating your expectations of your tenants and maintaining a good rapport while remaining on the right side of the law is not always easy. 

What essential information should you include in your rental agreement to make the most of your property investment and keep your tenants happy? We have the answers.

House Rental Agreement Essentials

A written lease agreement isn’t mandatory in all states, but it is certainly recommended. Without a clear and concise agreement between tenant and landlord, it becomes impossible to enforce your preferences and things can become muddy - and costly! Even a brief one-page lease agreement is better than none at all.

Here’s a rundown of what your house rental agreement should include.

Tenant Information

This section of your lease agreement will include the details of who will be occupying the property. Ideally, all adult members of the home should appear on the lease which adds a layer of insurance for the landlord as this ensures each person is legally responsible for the rental. 

Your lease agreement should also include an occupancy clause that details exactly who will be living on the property. This helps avoid subletting to unsuitable tenants or too many “guests” that can cause issues with neighbors, parking, or security.

A solid agreement will also include information about the minimum expectations of how the tenant should maintain the property. Make a note of what falls under the landlord’s responsibility and what the tenants are responsible for.

Property Description

From a legal perspective, this section of the agreement will include the exact details of the property including:

  • Physical address
  • Designated parking or storage
  • Details of restricted areas
  • Details of the property condition 
  • Fixtures and fittings

Whether or not the property is furnished, it’s wise to carefully document and even photograph the condition of the rooms and fittings. 

Tenancy Terms and Payment

The more information and specifics you have detailed, the better. Yes, it may take more time and effort, but it’s certainly worth it. In this part of your agreement, you will include:

  • Rental term with a start and end date
  • Lease renewal agreement details
  • Lease termination agreement details
  • Security deposits and how they are managed
  • Rental price and accepted means of payment
  • When the rental is due and details of fees on late payment

Many find it easier to use an online lease agreement which allows them to tweak details where necessary, and is a lot easier to manage - for both parties. In fact, making use of our online tenant resources is a clever, easy way to manage properties allowing for immediate access to:

  • Rental payments
  • Maintenance requests
  • Submission of notice
  • Utility transfer
  • Checklists

It’s worth making room in your agreement to detail how your tenant should contact you and offer several communication options. 

Keep It Simple

These essentials form the backbone of a good house rental agreement and will go a long way towards protecting both parties. If there are additional factors that you would like to include you should do so - this is your property and you have the right to care for it in the best way possible. Just be sure that your requirements are in line with local laws and regulations, and be sure to communicate them clearly to your prospective tenants. 

Our team is here to help you get the most out of your property investment minus the headache! We offer a host of services to smooth the communication between tenant and landlord and solve problems before they arise. Please feel free to get in touch with us at your convenience.