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What to Include in an Orlando Rental Agreement


Stephen Fox - Monday, March 26, 2018


An Orlando rental agreement is a legal contract between landlords and tenants. It sets out the rules that each party must adhere to. In addition, it's also a significantly practical document that lays out important business details. For example, the amount of rent due each month and how long the tenant can occupy the rental premises.

If you are just getting started as an Orlando landlord, it's important that you specify all your requirements and expectations when drafting your rental agreement.

So what exactly should your Orlando rental agreement include? 


Important Elements an Orlando Rental Agreement Should Have :


1.   The Parties

A contract involves two or more parties. As such, your tenancy agreement should make it clear who they are. It should contain your name as the landlord as well as the name of your tenant(s).

Make sure to list the names of all adults living in the rental unit. Legally, this means that you can seek rent from any of them if the others are unable to pay or skip.



2.   Property Description

In the lease, you should include the property's address, and also give a proper description of the property. Don't forget to include details such as the physical address, apartment and LR number, type of property, and the name of the building.


3.   Occupancy Limits

As a landlord, you have a right to decide who lives on your premises. Your agreement should clearly state that only tenants who've signed the rental agreement, as well as their children, are allowed to live on the premises. Besides this, the agreement should also include a clause on subletting.

With these clauses in place, you'll rest assured that your tenant(s) won't be subletting your property to their relatives or friends without your consent.


4.   Length of the Tenancy

Leases typically last a year. Rental agreements, on the other hand, run from month-to-month. Your choice on the term of the tenancy should depend on two things. One, the kind of flexibility you wish to have. And two, the length of time you want the renter to stay on the premises.



5.   Repairs and Maintenance

Under Orlando rental laws, the rental agreement should stipulate who is responsible for what when it comes to repairs and maintenance. This'll help prevent problems (especially over security deposits) and rent-withholding hassles. Here, you should remember to include things such as:

  • Restrictions on tenant alterations. For example, painting walls without your permission, installations of systems such as a burglar system, or adding appliances such as a built-in dishwasher.
  • An obligation that the renter should alert you to dangerous or defective conditions in the rental property.
  • The renter's responsibility to keep the rental unit clean at all times and to compensate for damage caused by their carelessness or negligence.

6.   Deposits and Fees

Security deposits are usually a cause of frequent friction between tenants and landlords. To avoid legal tangles and confusion, make sure your lease offers as many details as possible in this regard. It should be clear on the use, limits, and return of the deposits, including:

  • The security deposit amount
  • How the deposit may be used
  • How and when it'll be returned
  • If there are fees which are non-refundable

The key here is to stay compliant with Florida's security deposit law. Failure to do so can lead to problems.


7.   Rent

Tenants must pay rent, obviously. Your rental agreement should make this part very clear. It should clarify such details such as the dollar amount, the due date, and how it's to be paid (e.g., money order, checks, automatic drafts, and so on.)

Moreover, the agreement should state whether there are late fees when the rent is overdue or charges when the check bounces.

By including these crucial details, you'll head off disputes and avoid confusion.


8.   Right of Entry

Tenants have a right to quiet enjoyment of their homes. In a nutshell, this means that even as the landlord, you can't just enter the rental unit when you so wish. Repeatedly doing so would be considered tenant harassment. In Orlando, tenant harassment often attracts heavy penalties.

That being said, your rental agreement should clarify that you have a right to access the property to do repairs and property inspections.

The agreement should also state the amount of notice to give the tenant prior to entry.



9.   Policy on Pets

If you don't allow pets, make it clear on the rental agreement. If you do allow them, be clear on your requirements and expectations. State the types of pets allowed. Common pets include dogs, cats, birds, rabbits, guinea pigs, fish, small reptiles, gerbils, and hamsters.

This way, all renters will understand the rules you have in place for pets at your rental.

 

Each lease should include certain basics. If you are a landlord in Orlando, FL, make sure to include these nine items in your rental agreement. You’ll be glad you did!

At Warner Quinlan, we specialize in managing your Central Florida rental homes. Your life is busy enough, let us help you with the responsibilities of managing your own property. 


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