Tuesday, November 11, 2014

What To Look for in a Lease Agreement

A lease agreement is a legal contract binding both tenant and landlord when renting a piece of property. It serves to protect the rights of both parties involved. Look for these must-haves before you sign any lease agreement:

The basics.

The basics must be covered comprehensively. These include:

  The term - the term or length of the lease, and the tenants options once this initial term ends.

  The rent - the base rent, what it is inclusive of (ie. electricity, water, property tax, etc.); the date when tenant must pay rent; and whether there will be any changes in rent following the initial term

  The property - address and description of the property, its premises, facilities, and various permitted uses thereof.

  Guarantees - any security deposits or personal guarantees required and the conditions under which the tenant may get them back.

  The exit clause - the tenant's right to end the contract and the conditions under which this is permitted

The details.

Details, specifics, and permissible conditions regarding the following:

  improvements, alterations and repairs to the property

  maintenance and code compliance

  hours of operation

  right to sublease

  insurance

  pet clause

  landlord right of entry

  signage

  breach of contract

  option to renew

A clause barring non-written additions or modifications to the lease.

“Get it in writing,” as they say Make it official. Your contract must state that any informal agreement not written, acknowledged, and agreed upon as part of the contract will not be honored in the lease.


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