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Types of Rental Agreement: Lease Vs. Monthly/ Weekly Rental Agreements

By Sadiya Anjum

When a tenant and a landlord enter into an agreement, they both adhere to certain laws and regulations agreed upon. A rental agreement or lease contains all this information and protects both the landlord and the tenant. This agreement highlights names of both the parties, address of the rental property, the security deposit, rent amount and payment dates and all other related details.

A rental agreement can be oral or written. An oral agreement is less troublesome in terms of the paperwork involved but it has its own drawbacks. If problems arise during the tenancy, issues get fogged and distorted in who said what and when. Hence a written agreement is always the safer course to follow.

Depending on the length of tenancy, rental agreements can be of two kinds:

Lease: In this kind of agreement, the tenant is bound to occupy the rental property for a fixed period of time (generally over 12 months). The date of commencement and conclusion of the tenancy period have to be included in the lease agreement. Within this period, if the tenant wishes to move out then he may be required to find another tenant as a replacement. Details like this are usually included in the lease.

A lease proves to be advantageous to the tenant in terms of certain restrictions placed on landlordís rights. The landlord is restricted from increasing the rent or any other terms during the lease period. The landlord benefits simply from the assurance of tenant occupancy for that period of time. Lease agreements for more than a year have to be in the written format. At the end of the lease period, the tenant and landlord may renew the agreement if they wish to do so.

Monthly or Weekly Rental Agreement: Unlike a lease, rental agreements do not have a fixed period of time. It is usually based on a monthly basis and at the end of each month, the agreement is automatically renewed. This kind of agreement is terminated by the tenant or landlord with an advanced notice.

The terms and conditions of a rental agreement can be altered at any point provided a notice is served ahead of time. Rental agreements can be drawn up for a weekly or monthly basis depending on when the rent is due. Rental agreements can be oral but if a deposit or fee is being paid then a written agreement is necessary.

The aforementioned is the absolute basic difference between the two kinds of agreements. Each agreement should ideally contain other details about various guidelines including tenantís privacy issues, pets, utilities payment, repair and maintenance, landlordís duties etc. Usually a rental premises condition form is also attached which includes details about the state of the rental property.

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