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A lease is a signed document that protects both the landlord as well as the tenant. Most landlords and property managers require all tenants to sign a lease before they move in. A lease outlines the terms and conditions of living in that rental property. When you sign a lease you may feel like you are signing away your rights but this is actually not the case. There are several benefits to signing a lease for the tenant, not just the landlord.

A lease is an agreement or partnership between the two parties. Most leases address all aspects of renting the space including the rent price and how long they must remain in the building for. It will also address rules and restrictions on subletting, pets, guests, parties, painting, putting holes in the walls, maintenance and repairs, etc. If you are renting in a complex the lease will usually also include rules of the common areas such as using BBQ facilities and pool rules and regulations. All of these clauses are common for lease agreements.

When you are signing a lease you need to take your time and read every single detail. A lease can protect you from unnecessary eviction and problems down the road. If, for example, your landlord attempts to get you to pay for the repairs, you can refer to the lease. Even though the landlord has written the document, he may still try to go above and beyond what is written to get what he wants. A lease will stop this from happening.

Lease Benefits for the Tenant

One of the biggest benefits to signing a lease is that the apartment is yours until the lease ends, so feel free to customize it as you wish including moving recycled water to garden plants and other fun projects. Even if your landlord finds someone he likes better and is willing to pay more, he is stuck with you (unless you give him grounds for eviction). If you live in an area where apartments and rental homes are few and far between, then this offers great security, especially if you land a lovely place to live.

Another benefit to signing a lease is that the rent is controlled for a certain period of time. If you sign a lease for one year, for example, then you will not have to worry about market fluctuations and unexpected rental fee rises. After the lease is up your landlord may raise the rent per month based on the market. It is up to you to accept this and sign another lease or move on. This is especially beneficial if you are signing a lease of 24 months or longer as rental rates generally increase at least once a year.

Regardless of how nice of a person you are or how lovely the apartment is, there is always the chance that something could break or problems could arise during your rental term. Having a lease in place prevents your landlord from taking advantage of you. If things like repairs, maintenance and other 'tenant' duties are not addressed in the lease, then you have no legal right to pay for or do anything. This is a huge advantage for you.

If you are ever concerned with the way your landlord is treating you then look to your lease. Read it over and see if anything doesn't fit. If you are really concerned you can bring your complaint to a real estate lawyer who can read through the document, check that it is valid and acceptable and advise you on what your legal rights are. As a renter, you do have rights. One of the benefits of signing a lease is that these rights are protected.

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