Have you dealt with the consequences of a renter that found a loophole in your lease agreement? Creating an ironclad lease is an essential part of protecting your San Antonio area homes for rent—but without the right insight or guidance, you might not realize that your lease leaves you vulnerable.
We’ve talked about making sure you have the right insurance for your investment property business. However, protecting your rental property and income doesn’t stop there. Without a strong lease, residents can find ways to take advantage of you while living in your single-family homes or multi-family properties.
Before you download a free lease template and consider it ‘done,’ take the time to review your lease and follow these tips from a professional San Antonio property management company!
Quick note: This blog is not legal counsel. If you need real-time assistance, reach out to our San Antonio property managers or a skilled attorney.
What Are the Risks?
Generic lease templates can be a good starting point to build your agreements—but they often leave too much room for error ‘as-is.’ Your lease agreement should be thorough and leave no room for loopholes or gray areas that a resident can misinterpret in a way that leaves you with damaged property or lost rental income.
Your Assets Depend on Your Lease
Maybe creating legal documents isn’t your thing—and that’s okay. With the help of your legal counsel or professional San Antonio property management services, you can have an airtight lease that protects your income and your property assets.
An ineffective lease can lead to:
- Misunderstandings about the rules to live in your rental
- Ambiguity about the monthly rent amount and rent collection
- Confrontation about assessing late fees or penalties for breaking the rules
- Unwanted pets or additional ‘guests’ on the property
- Confusion about the criteria for terminating a lease
- Residents who stay (without renewing) beyond the lease term
- Lawsuits when trying to enforce something that isn’t clearly outlined in the lease.
One lawsuit can ruin your business! It’s expensive, you lose rental income, and you could forfeit the ability to operate a rental property business if your lease doesn’t offer the right protections.
A strong lease leaves no room for misunderstanding. If there’s any room for different interpretations of the text, property owners can find themselves in a difficult situation when trying to enforce the lease long term.
What Do I Need in My Lease Agreement?
Most lease template downloads fall short of the specifics property investors need for an airtight lease. As thoroughly as you conduct your tenant screening, make sure you apply that same attention to detail when creating your lease agreement.
Make sure your lease includes:
- Compliance with all local, state, and federal laws: Don’t depend on Google searches to try and navigate the regulations that govern San Antonio rental properties! You’ll need the insight of a lawyer to help you with this aspect of your lease if you choose not to work with property management.
- Names of all residents: Don’t stop with one name to represent every resident in a property. Your lease should document everyone approved to live in your rental.
- Leasing terms: Leave no question about the move-in and move-out dates for the lease term!
- Monthly rental amount, fees, and due dates: Clearly define the amount of rent due on a specific date each month. If you require deposits, make sure you include those in the lease.
- Maintenance and property care responsibilities: As the property owner, you’re responsible for the maintenance and condition of your rentals. However, residents have responsibilities to care for your property, too. Make sure your lease clearly documents what your renters need to do to maintain your property and the penalties if they fail to comply.
- Penalties for lease violations: Renters should know the penalties for not following the rules upfront. When it’s time to assess a fee or terminate the lease for a violation, direct your residents to the lease to support your actions.
- Rules about pets, smoking, and other activities: Use the lease to document your rules about allowing pets or smoking in your property. It’s also a smart idea to detail the penalties for excessive noise or illegal activities taking place in your property.
Successful property investors can’t leave any stone unturned when creating a legal and effective lease agreement. If you have to ask the question, ‘Should I include that in the lease?’ It’s probably a good idea to consult your lawyer or San Antonio property management partner about it! Take advantage of our years of experience to create the right lease.
Expert Management Creates and Enforces Leases
Don’t leave anything to chance when it comes to your San Antonio rental properties or your lease agreements! Protecting your investments requires attention to every detail in your lease. You don’t want to learn about what could be missing or unclear in your lease the hard way: through a lawsuit with a difficult resident.
Our professional management services can help you build the best lease agreement and protect your investments before choosing your next renter!
- At San Antonio Property Management, we know how to create a thorough, legal lease agreement for property investors.
- We can create and enforce your lease while handling your entire leasing process—including finding the best renters to comply with the lease.
If you are interested in having your property managed by Real Property Management Campanas, have more questions, or just want to speak to one of our team members, then contact us online or call us directly at (210) 314-1039 today!
We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.