Leases and Rental Agreements
Negotiating and Signing a Lease
Learn about the laws that cover security deposits, rent increases, and late fees.
Landlords typically want all adults who will live in the rental unit to sign the lease or rental agreement.
Your lease or rental agreement is probably loaded with clauses written to maximize the landlord’s rights and minimize yours.
This section discusses some common issues you may be able to negotiate—pets, guests, home businesses, and roommates.
There’s a way to nail down an oral understanding that lawyers use all the time. It’s called a “letter of understanding.”
Make sure your lease-option agreement is clear on important details, such as how and when the purchase price of the house is determined.
Learn whether a lease-to-own or lease-option agreement is a good choice for tenants who want to buy the home they rent.
Key Terms in Leases and Rental Agreements
Key terms you can expect to see in a lease or rental agreement.
The key differences between leases and rental agreements
Articles on Subletting and Subtenants
What to do if you want to sublet your apartment or rental house.
Sublet agreements should be in writing and signed by landlord, tenant, and subtenant.
Tenants should spell out terms of their sublet agreement with subtenants.
Get your landlord’s written okay before subletting your rental unit.
Tips for tenants who want to rent all or part of their apartment on Airbnb or similar short-term rental sites.
What NYC tenants and landlords need to know about Airbnb and short-term rentals.
Questions on Leases and Rental Agreements
The manager insists that the tenant must have an income three times the rental amount.
What are the rules for letting the tenants know that the contract will be changed?
How can I control the behavior of people in other apartments?
I pay rent on time. What are my rights?
Is there any legal recourse for this situation?
Isn t there something like assuming a lease whereby I pass all financial responsibility to the assumer of the lease and I am free to go?
Can landlords garnish wages without going to small claims court?
How do eviction laws work? Is there any way we can break our lease?
Be on the lookout for these illegal terms in your California lease or rental agreement.
Learn whether a landlord in California must provide a copy of your lease in a foreign language.
Changing or Breaking Your Lease
Landlords must take reasonable steps to rerent the place if you break a lease (you won t always be on the hook for rent for the remainder of the lease term).
How the landlord may (or may not) make changes during your month-to-month tenancy or lease
A month-to-month tenancy renews (sometimes termed “rolls over”) every 30 days.
Try to find replacement tenants if you need to break your lease.
Required Landlord Disclosures
Find out what disclosures you can expect to see in your lease or rental agreement or in another written communication from your landlord.
Renting With Pets
Landlords can help foreclosed-upon families by accepting tenants with pets — it s good for business if you follow some simple steps to protect yourself.
A pet agreement can reduce a landlord s risks in a pet-friendly building. Here s what to include in the agreement.
More About This Topic
More About This Topic
Talk to a Landlord-Tenant attorney.
How It Works
- Briefly tell us about your case
- Provide your contact information
- Choose attorneys to contact you
Connect With Us