4 Things To Include in Your Tenant Contract Before Renting Out

4 Things To Include in Your Tenant Contract Before Renting Out

A tenant contract or lease agreement is vital to prevent misunderstandings and ill-feeling between landlords and tenants. It can help you avoid a costly legal dispute and ensures peace of mind for both parties.

Every property owner who engages in renting out their property must comply with Tennessee tenant laws in their interactions with tenants.

These are the vital ingredients for an effective rental agreement.

1. Property and Landlord Details

This basic information clarifies the subject of the lease agreement and specifies the parties involved. It should include contact information for both the landlord and tenant, as well as the address of the property.

You should also include a description of the property and an inventory list of any furniture, amenities, and appliances included in the lease.

Both parties should sign the agreement.

2. Lease Specifics

Lease specifics refer to the rental terms applicable to the tenant. There are three main types of lease agreements:

A fixed-term lease specifies a start and end date for the agreement. It can convert to a month-to-month lease at the end of the term.

Fixed-term leases may span several months or years, depending on your preferences.

Month-to-month leases continue indefinitely until the parties agree to end the lease, i.e. the lease automatically renews every month.

Rent-to-own agreements give the tenant the first option to buy the property at a pre-determined price.

This section may also include information on sub-letting the property and restrictions on how many people may reside there during the lease.

3. Information About Payments

This section should include details about the amount of rent due and how frequently the tenant should pay rent, e.g. monthly or weekly. You can also state the preferred method of payment here, e.g. via an online portal, EFT, or cash.

The payment section must clearly state any penalties for late payment and the consequence in the event of ongoing non-payment.

Security deposit information should include the amount and any conditions for returning the deposit within state laws. Some states have limitations on how much you can charge for a security deposit.

4. Rights, Obligations, and Other Details

This section outlines both landlord and tenant rights and obligations toward each other. It includes things like:

  • Pet policies
  • Maintenance expectations
  • Smoking policy
  • Noise prohibitions
  • Tenant insurance
  • Landlord's access to the property
  • Policy for damages beyond wear and tear
  • Inclusions and exclusions

Under ''Other'', you should include information on dispute resolution, options to renew the lease or purchase the property, signing incentives for the tenant, eviction procedures, and anything else not covered elsewhere in the agreement.

Make sure your notice policy complies with the current Chattanooga Housing laws.

The Easy Way to Set Up a Tenant Contract

You can set up a rental agreement on your own, or download a template from the internet, but you'll never know if you've ticked all the boxes until something goes wrong.

We can help you with every aspect of managing your rental property, including setting up a tenant contract to keep you and your tenants happy.

Get in touch to discuss your investment property goals, and let's talk.

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