Never underestimate the power of lease agreements, because the seemingly simply contract can actually hold an immense legal power when it comes to the property and rental situation. This kind of agreement has a legal binding power over both landlord and the tenant.
Landlords will provide tenants with the agreement, but they can always talk it to (with the landlords) when there are ‘difficult’ clauses that may affect the tenancy. This is one of the many reasons why tenants, especially, shouldn’t sign the contract before they read the details.
Once they sign the contract, it means that they agree to everything written on the contract. If they do have objections about one (or some) of the clauses, it would be difficult to challenge the agreement.
Lease Agreement Concept
When we are talking about lease agreement, we are talking about a written contract between a tenant and landlord stating the amount payable for the rent (on the monthly basis) and for how long. Basically, the agreement lies out the obligation and rights of both landlords and tenants.
However, for many people, the agreement is often viewed intimidating because many of the terms (and the form of the language itself) can be confusing. However, any tenant shouldn’t feel intimidated, especially if they know what’s included within the agreement.
Knowing the basic facts can be helpful to avoid any unnecessary issues or disagreements during the lease, or even after the lease has been over.
The agreement would entail the details of both tenant and landlord’s responsibilities and obligations, as well as their rights. It’s about the stuff both of them have agreed about the lease: the monthly rent, who should be responsible for the property’s upkeep, and the length of the tenancy.
Tenants should know that such an agreement can be changed BEFORE they sign it. As it was mentioned before, when tenants don’t agree to the agreement or understand it, or whether there is a clause that should be changed, tenants should discuss with the landlord.
If they do the discussion AFTER the signing, then it’s basically a lost cause.
A Document that Is Binding and Legal
When the agreement has been signed, it would govern what tenants and landlords can (and can’t) do during the lease term.
You should know that the agreement would function as this binding and legal contract that can be used by the court if anything goes wrong or whether there is any altercation with the two involved parties.
The Verbal Lease Agreement
On the contrary to what people believe, there is the so-called verbal lease agreement that can be used (or enforced) as an oral contract. However, you should also know that not all states would allow such an agreement. In fact, all states prohibit verbal commercial agreements.
Tenants having verbal residential (lease) agreement would be protected by tenants rights law, which each state has. The problem with commercial leases is its complexity.
When it has to go to court, it would be difficult to prove or use. Substantiating such verbal ‘contract’ is impossible, and this is the main reason why such agreement isn’t allowed.
The Important Take
Landlords and tenants should start viewing the lease agreements as this solid written contract that will protect their rights and enforce their obligations. Tenants, especially, should see the contract as something that can actually benefit them, instead of viewing it as a ‘contractual trap’ that they should be fear of.
Communication is the key to maintain good relationship, and it should be done from the beginning (before the signing) to the end (until the lease expires). Moreover, the agreement would include the details of everything: the amount of payment, the eviction process, the rent collection, and others.
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Tenants are required to read the contract thoroughly and in details. That’s why they shouldn’t sign it in a hurry. If they have anything that they don’t understand or they don’t really agree upon, then they should convey it to the landlords.
If the landlords have an open mind, they won’t mind sitting down and discussing it. But if they don’t want to talk about it, then it’s probably a good sign for the tenants not to get involved with such a landlord. Lease agreements can be quite powerful; even showing you the quality of a landlord.