How to Use a Rental Contract Form

Maybe you own an apartment or you have a house that you have decided to rent out. After several screenings, you finally found a great tenant. Should you seal the deal with just a handshake or a written concise rental contract?

Although an oral contract may be enforceable, it often leads to disputes. With a clear agreement written down, any disagreement (it inevitably arises) such as who will pay for repairs, whether the tenant may bring pets, if parking is included or not - all these may likely result in nasty court arguments over who said what, when or in what context - can be avoided.

A good written rental contract clearly states the rights, responsibilities, privileges, and limitations of both the landlord and the tenant. The rental contract form you and your tenant filled and signed forms the contractual basis of your rental relationship. It sets all legal rules both parties must follow. Given the importance of a written rental contract, you need to create a comprehensive and ironclad rental contract with your tenant. There is no absolute rental contract form. Any stipulation that the tenant and the landlord agree upon to include in the agreement is valid as long as it is lawful. A rental contract can be customized to meet the needs of both parties.

A rental contract can either be residential or commercial. Rental co ntracts on homes, condominiums and apartments are called residential rental agreements while commercial rental contracts pertain to stores, offices and industrial buildings or properties. The most common type of rental contract is the month-to-month rental agreement. It lasts for a short period of time typically 30 days and self renews each month unless both parties give proper notice and terminate the contract. You may also increase the rent, change the terms of the contract upon prior notice unless rent control laws or ordinances specify otherwise.

Rent is one of the many essential details of a rental contract. A standard rental contract form typically specifies the following:

  • Names of all tenants
  • Limit of occupants
  • Length of the tenancy
  • Amount of rent - when it is due and how it is to be paid
  • Amount of the security deposit - how it is to be used and when it will be returned
  • Repairs and maintenance - who is responsible
  • Landlord access to rental property - when and how the landlord may enter the premises
  • Whether pets are allowed
  • Whether the tenant may sublet the property
  • Who pays for utilities
  • Provisions for changing or terminating the contract
  • Restrictions on illegal activities

Any other legal restrictions that are important to you and the tenant should also be spelled out in the rental contract form. The form should be properly filled and signed before the tenant occupies your property.

Most often landlords rely on generic rental contract forms available in the market. Most of them cover the basics only. Make sure the rental contract defines the details that will govern your relationship with your tenant. It should also be up-to-date and in full compliance of property leasing laws that are applicable to your state, city or town. Your rental contract should be able to stand up in court.

Now that you are armed with guidelines on the importance of a written rental contract and how to use it, selecting or creating the appropriate rental contract form should be quick and easy.

Rental Contract Forms Package

Our Rental Contract Package Includes :

  • Rental Contract
  • Rental Application
  • Rental Application Co-Signer Form
  • Rental Application Rejection Letter
  • 30 Day Notice
  • Extension of Lease
  • Residential Lease Agreement
  • Month to Month Rental Agreement
  • Lease Termination Form
  • Move in/Move out Form
  • Notice of Overdue Rent
  • Permission to Sublet
  • Rent Receipt
  • Residential Lease with the Option to Purchase
  • Monthly Income Record
  • Payment Agreement
  • Property Inspection Checklist


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