The Correct Rental Agreement means the rental agreement that is the latest and the most complaint with your state or province’s landlord and tenant law!
Both in the US and Canada, the landlord and tenant issues handled at the local level by the states or the provinces.
USE CORRECT RENTAL AGREEMENT FORM
Always use the latest and most updated Rental agreement form. In fact, any form you are required to use as a landlord, should not be outdated.
This is the first step towards the successful landlording.
Once you have become a landlord, you are going to remain to be a landlord for a long period of time. That is even if you decide not to expand and buy another property as a landlord. You’ll come across the situation where you would be required to give a notice for the late payment of rent, a notice to enter the rental premises, a notice of eviction and so on. All these forms should be compliant with the latest state and provincial law. You can save yourself lots of time or hassle, later on, by following this advice.
Easy to get confused with many Rental Agreements Available Online
Its a general tendency of a novice landlord to save money on everything including Rental or Lease Agreement. In the age of the internet, there is many general Lease agreements available online free of charge. Each and every jurisdiction in USA and Canada have their own Landlord and Tenant Acts. Often times they are somewhat different from one another. These laws get amended or updated periodically. In the age of the internet, there are many different forms available which may appear similar. So it’s easy to fall prey to an innocent mistake of using outdated or other jurisdiction’s form. This may prove costlier.
Why it is important to use Correct Forms
We’ll see some examples of different tenancy laws from several jurisdictions in the US and Canada to understand why it is important to use correct forms.
Non-payment of the Rent
Once the tenant does not pay the rent, The landlord can give the notice to end the tenancy to show the intent to the tenant. This notice has a written number of days before the landlord can go to the court to sue the tenant. The number of days is also called a grace period. If the tenant pays the rent within this grace period, the notice is considered null and void and the tenant can continue with the tenancy.
Some examples of minimum days for this notice period are as follows.
Ontario – 14 days
British Columbia – 10 days
Michigan – 7 days
Ohio – 3 days, however, the landlord is not obligated to accept the tenant and can go ahead and sue the tenant for the eviction.
So you can imagine what happens if you are based in Ontario and if you give notice to your tenant using British Columbia’s form.
Ontario and Quebec – The landlord can charge the last month rent deposit. This deposit is strictly the last month rent and not the security deposit or repair deposit. It can not be applied to any kind of damage.
British Columbia – The landlord can ask for the half of the first-month rent as a security or damage deposit. At the end of the tenancy, the landlord is allowed to apply this amount to any repairs or damage, but not unilaterally. The tenant has to agree in writing with the landlord. The landlord has no more than 15 days to return the remaining portion or the full deposit to the tenant.
Michigan – In Michigan, the landlords are allowed to charge 1.5 months rent as a security deposit. At the end of the tenancy, the Landlord has 30 days to return this deposit (at the forwarding address given by the tenant) with an itemized list of deductions. The tenant has no more than 7 days to dispute this list if any.
Ohio – In Ohio, there are no statutory limits on how much a landlord can charge as a security deposit. However, at the end of the tenancy, deposit, if any, should be returned within 30 days.
Your tenant may sue you for charging different deposit than required by the local law.
Ontario – Landlord can’t restrict pet with the exception of the condominium.
British Columbia – Landlords are allowed to restrict the pets completely or can restrict the size, numbers and type.
Michigan – Landlords are allowed to restrict pet completely, but can’t restrict a disabled individual relying on a service animal from housing the animal.
Ohio – Similar to Michigan law
Where to find the latest Rental Agreement for your Province or State
Many states and provinces have rental agreements published on their websites. But that is not true for all of them.
Here is what I would suggest.
Look around on the state or provincial websites. You may also look for free resources like the local library, or your city’s landlord’s association office if any. You may find the set of printed forms. Make sure they are the most up-to-date.
If you don’t find success, go for the paid services.
They give a one-week free trial. Please beware if you don’t cancel or subscribe for the whole year. Your subscription will be renewed automatically for hefty monthly charges.
They charge $96 per year($8 per month) for the US customer and $72 per year(CAD $6 per month) for the Canadian customer. You can avail not the just real estate forms, but a whole lot of other forms for many different purposes like estate planning, divorce, partnerships and so on. As shown in the image, the documents are created in a customized manner for individual purpose.
Legalcontract.com is also a similar website offering this kind of document services.