Residential Tenancy Agreements – Rental Contract
Before you move into your new rental accommodations, you should sign a lease or tenancy agreement/ contract with your new landlord (available on Rentfaster if the landlord does not have one). Talk with your landlord, clarify information and put anything agreed upon in writing. This can prevent misunderstandings and potential disagreements in the future.
Simple information that seems common place should still be in the contract.
- How much is the rent?
- When and where will the rent be paid? What happens when it is late? (it is recommended to always get a receipt when you pay the rent.)
- It the agreement for amount of time (6 months/1 year) or month to month?
- Is there a security/damage deposit required and how much is it?
- Does the rent include heat, water, electricity, cable, internet?
- Am I able to decorate my unit? What is the policy with push pins and nail holes in the walls?
- Are pets allowed? Is there an extra deposit for pets?
- Is smoking allowed?
- Is parking included? Is there a cost? How much?
- Who pays for repairs? Who do we call if there is a problem? What is the contact info? When will the inspection report be done?
- When and where are notices delivered when it is time to move out?
- Who shovels the snow and cuts the grass? Who supplies the equipment (shovels, lawn mower) for this maintenance?
- Is there laundry facilities? Is there a schedule for use? Is there a cost?
If you have a roommate/partner they should also be on the agreement/contract. It is best that all names be on the agreement/contract for anyone living at the residence. What happens if one person needs to move out before the end of the tenancy? Know before hand who pays the bills and how costs will be shared. This will prevent any misunderstandings with your roommates in the future.
Is there storage area for bikes, skis or seasonal decorations? Who has access to this area? Is there parking included? If so, where is the parking and for how many vehicles? How quiet is the unit during certain hours? Is there a quiet hour enforced?
All of these items should be part of/or in the contract. Do not be afraid to ask all the questions a head of time. There are no stupid questions. It is always better to know everything upfront so there is no misunderstandings and potential disagreements later on with your landlord. It is always the best practice to put everything in writing.
Be safe out there and know your rights.