The lease agreement you sign with your tenants is an important legal contract. It should protect you and your Hamilton rental property, and it should also protect the rights and safety of your residents. Make sure you use a tenancy agreement that’s compatible and in compliance with the Residential Tenancies Act.
The standard form lease includes several pertinent pieces of information that must be addressed by landlords and their tenants. Today, we’re discussing what you can expect when you sign such a lease.
Identifying and Contact Information
It’s obviously important to include all the contact and identifying information of the person who is renting out the property and the tenants who will be living there. You’ll want every adult listed as a party that’s responsible for the property and the rental payments. Include information on children and pets as well. The lease agreement must identify where the home is located and whether it’s being leased furnished or unfurnished, and what the term of the lease is set to be.
Rent Collection and Utilities
The lease agreement must also include your rent collection policy. It is important to be very clear about:
- How much rent is due
- How often that rental payment is made (weekly, monthly, biweekly, etc.)
- What forms of payment will be accepted (cash, cheque, electronic draft, etc.)
- Grace periods, if applicable
- Penalties and consequences to late rental payments
The lease agreement must also address other things that the tenant may be charged for, such as parking or association fees. There also needs to be a section on utilities so it’s clear who is responsible for those and how they should be paid. Some landlords will require tenants to set up utility accounts in their own names, others want to pay the utilities themselves and then bill tenants for the cost. Your lease must be clear on how this works.
If a deposit is collected before a tenant moves into the property, make sure your tenancy agreement reflects the amount as well.
Rules and Regulations for Tenancy
A thorough lease agreement will also include information about what the tenant is prohibited from doing while living in your property. For example, if you don’t want any smoking, make sure your lease reflects that. If you want to require insurance or prohibit any changes being made to the unit, the lease agreement must be clear about what the tenant can and cannot do.
Maintenance and Responsibilities
Another important section is maintenance and who is responsible for which things. The lease should indicate that the landlord is responsible for maintaining the home and its systems. You need to provide a safe and habitable property. If you want the tenant to be responsible for things such as changing air filters or replacing light bulbs or repelling pests, the lease agreement is the place to stipulate these requirements.
We can help you put together a legally compliant lease agreement that protects the property and your rights as a landlord. If you have any questions about lease agreements or tenancies, please contact us at Spotted Properties.