Relationships between renters and landlords are a rather delicate topic, and people, on most occasions, decide to ensure that all the needed formalities are completed and all the papers are signed. That is why rental lease agreements and other legal forms used by tenants and real property owners exist.
In the United States, different regions regulate such relationships and documents differently and have their own approach to the topic. In this review, we will explore the New York rental lease agreement, lease termination, and rental application forms. We will provide you with an informative but quick about each of these documents and how they work in the state of New York specifically. We will add info about state laws and regulations and many other useful details.
Before we start, let’s define what means what and discover a basic definition of all those terms and forms. The rental lease agreement is a document signed between the one who owns residential or commercial premises and transfers it to another person for a certain period (a landlord or an owner) and the one who takes such premises on specific conditions (a tenant or a renter).
The lease termination form is a document used by either a landlord or a tenant if one of them wants to finish the lease contract and move out (if it is a renter who begins the procedure) or empty the premises (if it is an owner). Finally, the rental application is a template that a renter can fill out and deliver to the potential landlord. Such applications allow a landlord to find out some details about a tenant and decide whether they want to host this specific tenant or not.
New York Rental Lease Agreement Form
Anytime a rental deal happens in New York, whether the object is a commercial or residential real property piece, the ones who make the agreement discuss various matters and act upon certain conditions included in the lease agreement. This document is a widely used legal tool that helps to protect both parties’ interests.
Usually, it is a detailed legal form that contains plenty of pages describing all possible terms and conditions. In every such agreement, one shall insert the following data:
- The renter’s and owner’s personal info
Because the contract is signed by at least two parties (or even more, if it is a group of people who rent the premises), both of them must be identified in the document. Besides the names, it is a great idea to add phone numbers and other contact details.
- The property’s description and address
The real estate object in question should be mentioned in the contract. It is necessary to write its full address (with a state, county, and postal code) and a basic description (if it is a commercial or residential object, how many rooms it has, what feature it has, and so on). If there is something else rented with the premises (furniture, domestic appliances, and other items), the landlord had better list everything in the agreement, too.
- The rental price, terms, and payment method
This is one of the most important points of the whole rental contract. The price in US dollars should be written in a separate section, and the terms should be indicated as well (if the payment is needed once per month or once per another period). Even though in most cases the rent is paid once a month, sometimes parties choose another term and payment date. Finally, it would be great if the contract has the information about the payment method selected by both parties.
- The lease period
On average, rental lease agreement contracts are either short-term or one-year contracts (if residential); commercial spaces can be given for even a longer term. A landlord and a renter should agree on the term that suits both of them before they sign the agreement. If the agreement terminates, but both parties still want to cooperate, a new agreement should be signed (or the current agreement should be prolonged).
- Lease conditions
All other conditions that parties are willing to include in their contract can be added. There are no limitations. The main thing is that both an owner and a tenant agree on all points, read the contract carefully, and sign it.
- Signatures and the signing date
Lastly, no lease agreement contract is valid in New York state and any other place in the world without the landlord’s and renter’s signatures that express parties’ consent. The date of signing is essential, too, so it is clear when exactly the agreement was finalized and signed.
As you can see, there is quite a lot of things that must be added to every lease agreement in New York. Let’s pay attention to the laws and regulations that apply to tenants and real estate owners in this state.
Lease Laws in New York
If you are curious about the laws that tenants and landlords should know when dealing with real property in the state, check the New York Consolidated Laws, the Title “Real Property” (shortly called RPP) title. Article 7 tells everything on the topic, including regulations about security deposit limits and other important issues.
Another source of legal information is the Emergency Tenant Protection Act 576/74(f). For instance, the security deposit in New York state cannot exceed one month’s rent amount, as written in this document, Section 6.
Speaking of the owner’s access to the premises while they are rented, the state law does not offer any provisions that tell owners what to do. So, basically, an owner should not notify a renter about their visit unless something else is written in their mutual contract. However, it is good manners to notify your tenant, and many people, luckily, consider it inappropriate to interfere in other people’s privacy.
In New York, there is plenty of disclosures that an owner should provide to a tenant. Among them are a commonly used lead-based paint disclosure (if the house was constructed before 1978), disclosures about allergen hazards, bed bugs, sprinkler, stove knob covers, and window guards. Also, a smoking policy disclosure and a security deposit receipt should be given to a renter.
New York Lease Termination Form (30-day Notice)
As we have explained in the introduction above, the lease termination form is a letter sent from one party (the one who wants to cancel the lease agreement) to another. The contract cancellation may happen because of either a landlord or a tenant. However, usually, it is the landlord who wants to finish the rental relationship.
In Article 7 of RPP (chapters from 220 to 238), one may find state laws telling about the lease termination process and eviction procedures.
By law, there are six reasons for an owner to begin the lease termination cancellation of a tenant who is:
- Breaking any rule of the existing lease contract
- Delaying the rental payment (especially if this happens a couple of months in a row)
- Agreement termination
- Having pets illegally and without an owner’s approval
- Doing other illegal actions on the premises (drug use, prostitution, and so on)
- An owner’s wish to free the premises that are not related to the tenant (for example, plans to sell the premises soon).
The tenant may have their own reasons to move out, too: for one, moving to another city or country because they have found a new job or are getting married. They can also use the same form to notify the landlord about leaving. One month (or 30 days) is a reasonable term in which the landlord is normally able to find another decent candidate who would love to rent the place.
Each such form should contain the owner’s and renter’s names, the property’s location, the reason why the renter should move out, and the exact day when they have to do so.
New York Rental Application Template
Such a template lets an owner obtain the needed info about candidates who apply to rent the real estate. Potential renters fill out the template with the details about themselves: from their names, dates of birth, and occupation to their credit history and previous landlord’s references and recommendations.
A new landlord has the full right to conduct a background check for each tenant. It costs money, so the tenant should pay; however, the fee should not exceed 20 US dollars by law (Chapter 238, Article 7, RPP). The candidate then shall get a receipt from the property owner.
Such a check allows the owner to understand whether the candidate has provided truthful details about themselves and whether it is a good idea to transfer the property to this specific individual. When the landlord has gone through all the potential renters’ info and selected the renter who is considered to be perfect, these two parties discuss the rental conditions and terms and sign the lease agreement together.