An amendment is an updated clause or modification that is added to an existing contract, and so, an amendment to add new tenants to an existing lease agreement is a simple piece of documentation that doesn’t require any legal expertise to draft. This is particularly common today, particularly in college towns and among young professionals. To help you out, we’ve compiled a guide on everything you need to know to write your own amendment to add (or remove!) a tenant to an existing rental or lease agreement.
When will I need to amend the original lease agreement?
If the roommate you signed the lease with decides to vacate the apartment, you’ll both be held liable for rent and any other costs as per the original lease contract. Roommates tend to leave for a number of reasons, personal or otherwise, and in such situations, you’ll likely need to find someone to take their spot and cover their share of the rent. Otherwise, you and your old roommate(s) will be left liable and legally obligated to pay rent for the remainder of the rental agreement. When you do find a new tenant to replace the old one, you’ll need to add their name to the lease – at this juncture, you’ll need to add an amendment to the original lease agreement, which removes your old roommate’s name and instates the new tenant into the lease.
Drafting amendment to the lease agreement
Once all the particulars have been settled, and the landlord is aware of the new tenant’s wishes to move in, you can start drafting the amendment. It isn’t a complicated piece of legal writing, so don’t worry too much – all it requires are some basic pieces of information regarding the new tenant. Keep in mind that all other terms, conditions, stipulations, and clauses from the original, existing lease agreement will still be enforceable. The only change that this would make is simply replacing the previous tenant with the new one. To help you out, we’ve created a sample amendment that you may use as-is or modify to best suit your needs and wants! Our sample amendment to the lease agreement can be found below;
Add/Remove Tenant Lease Amendment Sample
This amendment to the original lease agreement, which was signed and became enforceable on the date of (Date of the original lease.) and is attached to this agreement is hereby enforceable, upon signature, on __ (Date of the amendment.) (Here, there should be a copy of the original lease agreement attached.)
I. The original agreement, which is attached for reference, subjected the parties “the landlord,” _ and “the tenant,” _ to its terms and conditions. It concerns the occupation of the property located at _____________________________________________
Collectively, the landlord and the tenant(s) are hereby referred to as “the parties.”
II. The parties hereby acknowledge and agree to the following amendments that are to be made to the lease;
The following individual(s) are to be added to the lease within the capacity of a tenant. They will be subject to all binding terms and conditions, as outlined in the original lease agreement.
The following individual(s) are to be removed from the lease and are hereby not considered a part to the terms and conditions outlined in the original lease agreement;
III. This amendment does not override the original lease agreement. The parties hereby acknowledge and agree to the inclusion of the aforementioned changes into the lease agreement.
LANDLORD NAME _________________________
LANDLORD SIGNATURE _________________________ DATE _________________________
TENANT(s) NAME(s) _________________________
TENANT(s) SIGNATURE(s) _________________________ DATE _________________________
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
The amendment may simply be drafted and inserted into the original lease, with signatures from all the relevant parties. This typically includes the landlords and the tenant/property management company. The addendum will need to be pre-approved and signed before becoming a part of the lease agreement.
There are a few different ways to break a lease. If you co-sign with other tenants, you can simply add an addendum to replace you with another tenant. The onus of finding a replacement generally falls on the tenant that is moving out. If that isn’t an option or possible, you may break a lease by paying an agreed-upon sum (which is a part of the leasing agreement), but this may be less desirable, as it is generally quite expensive.
Any amendment may simply be drafted and inserted into the lease, with signatures from all contingent parties. The landlord and the other tenant(s) will all have to sign off on it and agree to it. If they do, it can be attached without modifying the other terms and conditions of the existing lease agreement!