Every lease agreement will have standard clauses and include information such as how much rent must be paid, when it’s due and whether tenants can have pets. Since we are talking about lease agreements, we want to share a few of the things we include that are also important.
Most leases are going to have a clause about smoking and whether it’s allowed. But now with the new laws in Washington State regarding marijuana, we need to modify those leases to include it. All lease agreements should address when and where it can be smoked, if at all. Marijuana is pretty odorous, and if you have a condo and your neighbors can smell it on the back deck, you may have some issues.
Early Termination Penalties
Your lease should include a penalty for early termination. In the state of Washington, a tenant can terminate early, but they have to pay rent until a new tenant is found. The law also requires landlords to make a good faith effort to find a tenant. There are some costs involved in finding a new tenant, so define those charges and costs in the lease.
Annual Carpet Cleaning
Some tenants will go a few years without cleaning the carpets. This negatively affects the lifespan of your carpet. Indicate in the lease that once a year, your carpets must be professionally cleaned.
Many communities do not specify what and where parking can occur. We need to do it ourselves. Address whether they can park on the front lawn and if motor homes are permitted in front of the property. Lots of cities and neighborhoods don’t have rules against these things, so clarify what the rules are for you.
Years ago, companies would drill right through the roof of a property when installing a satellite dish. You need a clause in your lease specifying where those dishes can be attached. Some condo communities don’t allow dishes, but we have so many tenants coming from other parts of world that we need to allow them. Just be specific about where they can be attached.
If you have a furnace with filters that need to be changed, make sure you put that in the lease. Tell tenants they must change those filters at least every three months.
If your property is in an association, your tenants will have rules pertaining to parking, where garbage cans should be left and other regulations. Make sure your lease requires your tenants to be obligated by those rules. Give them a copy of the HOA rules and regulations because if there’s a fine for something that isn’t being done properly, you’ll want to pass that cost on to your tenant.
8 Things Every Lease Agreement Should Cover – Property Management in Redmond, WAIncluding information about renter’s insurance is important because tenants don’t realize that a homeowner’s insurance policy doesn’t cover their belongings. With a renter’s insurance policy, personal belongings will be covered if there’s a flood or some other catastrophe.
Please contact us at Windermere Gregory Property Management in Kirkland, WA if you have any questions about where to get a lease and what you should include in that agreement.