A lease agreement legally defines the contractual relationship between landlord and tenant. A thorough contract addresses every angle of the relationship and guides the resolution of disputes. Due to the vital importance of the lease agreement, you should consult a real estate lawyer in Indiana about developing a lease tailored to your business goals and compliant with federal, state, and local laws. Although lease terms vary, the most effective rental contracts share these characteristics.
- In Writing
A lease agreement needs to be in writing because a verbal agreement will be difficult to enforce.
- Clear Terminology
Although Westfield lawyers will use some specialized legal terms throughout leases, this does not mean that the bulk of the document needs to be challenging to read and understand. Strong leases use clear wording that does not leave the terms open to various interpretations.
- Clear Numbers
The amount and due date for rent should be explicitly stated along with how many days may pass before rent is officially late and if the tenant is subject to a late fee. As for the security deposit, a good contract specifies what constitutes damage that would cause forfeiture of all or part of the deposit.
- Activity Restrictions
The lease is an opportunity to express community standards and spell out consequences for violations. For example, a lease could present the policy regarding the number of overnight guests, when loud music is allowed, or the hosting of large events.
- Pet Policy
Whether you allow pets, ban them altogether, or allow animals under certain conditions, the lease should describe what is acceptable and unacceptable.
- Clear Outcomes for Breach of Lease
A contract contains rights, obligations, and consequences. A strong lease communicates what actions the parties will take to address breaches of the agreement.
- Severability Clause
Severability is the legal concept that “severs” each lease term from the others to act independently. Inserting a severability clause protects you against the possibility of the whole lease being deemed unenforceable if one part cannot be legally enforced.
Know the Exact Laws Where You’re Leasing
Local municipalities sometimes have rental codes that must be observed on top of state or federal laws. A violation of a local statute could undermine an otherwise well-crafted lease. A real estate lawyer in Indiana can investigate rental laws and develop a locally compliant lease. Schedule a meeting with a real estate lawyer by calling Webster & Garino at (317) 565-1818.
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