A lease agreement lawyer is a type of real estate lawyer who specializes in landlord-tenant law. These lawyers provide drafting, analyzing, legal advice, and if necessary, legal representation to their clients regarding all facets of their residential lease agreements or commercial lease agreements.
Lease agreement lawyers can also serve as a mediator between a landlord and tenant to help make sure the agreement made between the parties is mutually beneficial. This can make a big difference in the professional relationship between the two, which is a big plus. The experienced attorneys at Toepfer at Law, PLLC, are able to provide services for all legal matters concerning real estate law including lease agreement issues and tenant disputes.
A lease is a contract where one party agrees to let another use their property in exchange for money. Typically, written leases cover the details of such an agreement, specifying the terms of the lease from how the property can be used to how rent is to be paid to what the parties can do if they have a disagreement. Working with a seasoned St. Petersburg lease agreement lawyer can help to ensure that your legal rights are protected with a residential or commercial lease.
Lease agreements serve as the primary document that outlines the terms and conditions of the tenancy. They establish a contractual relationship between the landlord and tenant, specifying the rights and responsibilities of each party. Lease agreements are legal contracts between landlords and tenants that govern their relationship. Contracts are considered legally binding when:
One of the first questions that tenants have when leasing a new unit is simple: the cost. Perhaps the most important detail in any residential lease agreement is the monthly rent.
This section should clearly state how much the tenant must pay in rent every month. It should also include information about what repercussions occur if rent is late, such as late fees or eviction.
Sometimes, rent includes utilities for the unit, as well. The residential lease agreement should state whether this is the case.
It’s a common practice for landlords to require security deposits at the beginning of any new relationship with a tenant. These deposits are intended to protect the landlord’s investment in the home and are held to the end of a lease to cover any potential costs from damages made to the home during the tenancy.
Security deposits can also be used to cover the cost of a cleaning service if the property is not left move-in ready for the next tenant. Replacement of any fixtures in the home such as window coverings, lights, or appliances can also be taken out of your security deposit at the end of your tenancy.
Other fees such as late fees and pet fees should also be included in this section. Lease agreement lawyers can ensure that the fees are reasonable and that they are set aside for the right purposes.
When something breaks or needs maintenance, who is responsible for the cost? When it comes to residential lease agreements, the landlord is typically the one responsible. This is where the lease agreement comes in handy – to help determine the answer to questions like these.
In the rare case that repair and maintenance fall on the tenant’s shoulders, cheaper rent is usually negotiated to compensate. Since the cost for repair and replacement of rental units can get expensive, it only makes sense to agree to be liable for repairs or maintenance if your budget allows.
A detailed description of the rental property should be present in all rental agreements. This should include the square footage, number of bedrooms, and other crucial details about the property.
If any damages are present upon move-in, that should also be included in this section of the rental agreement. If it is not, many landlords provide a move-in checklist that allows tenants to document repairs needed at move-in to protect their security deposit from being held for previously existing damages.
The rules surrounding how to terminate or renew your lease should be plainly stated in your rental agreement. This means that you should have clear instructions regarding how much notice is required for either action.
This portion of the contract should also inform you of any consequences that may occur from breaking your lease early or failing to renew your lease.
Failure to include a term could result in the lease agreement defaulting to a month-to-month term.
Even though renters legally reside on the property, the home is still the owner’s property. Landlords always include terms about their right to enter the property and what rules they must follow to do so, such as providing 24 hours’ notice.
Contact information for the landlord, tenant, and any other agency involved should be a part of any lease agreement.
Residential lease agreements are not limited to these terms. There can be many other details included in the lease agreement – it’s up to the landlord.
Here is a quick overview of other key terms that are often included:
In some cases, there can also be an addendum to the lease added. Addendums are additional terms that are added to the end of the contract that once signed, become legally binding to the agreement.
For property owners, a landlord-tenant lawyer can ensure that the contract is well-written to protect their interests. This includes spelling out provisions for the payment of rent, a pet policy, and more, as well as ensuring that the lease doesn’t contain anything that could land you in legal hot water.
For example, many landlords would prefer that their tenants not have pets, as even the best-behaved dog or cat can cause damage and bother other renters. It is possible to include a “no pets” policy in your lease. However, under federal law, you may be required to allow emotional support animals or a service dog. Your real estate lawyer can advise you on how to draft a lease that covers these situations or any other legal issues that arise due to the specific needs of your potential tenants.
The ultimate goal of a lease agreement for a landlord is to create a contract that ensures that your investment will be protected while avoiding any illegal or prohibited provisions. While there are many online lease templates, working with an experienced attorney can allow you to create a customized lease that addresses your unique situation. This includes making sure that you make all disclosures required by law.
The experienced attorneys at the Toepfer at Law, PLLC, law firm are here for all our client’s needs and offer free consultations to prospective real estate clients in need of legal advice.
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