Free Pennsylvania Standard Residential Lease Agreement – PDF

Pennsylvania-Standard-Residential-Lease-Agreement-Form

Pennsylvania residential lease agreement is a form that provides the agreement between the landlord and tenant, including all clauses necessary to be included in rental agreements. Therefore, by using the form, residential lease agreements can comply with all the correct laws, both federal and state. The state laws governing lease agreements in Pennsylvania are outlined under the Landlord and Tenant Act of 1951 (Title 68).

Landlords and tenants need a lease agreement to record the terms and conditions of renting a property. While these terms will vary from lease to lease, Pennsylvania laws dictate that specific terms and provisions be included in every residential lease agreement executed within the state. To this effect, the state has a standard residential lease agreement form detailing the legally required provisions in Pennsylvania. These provisions tackle different aspects of the lease, such as rent amount, lease term, pertinent disclosures, and other tenancy guidelines.

This article explores the critical elements of a standard Pennsylvania residential lease agreement form to help landlords and tenants draft one that adheres to all applicable laws.

Must-Haves of the Lease Agreement

A lease agreement can address any aspect of leasing if agreed upon by the parties or required by law. Residential lease agreements in Pennsylvania ought to outline the following basic information:

  • The landlord’s and tenant’s contact details
  • The property’s address and description
  • Payment clause, which includes the due date and payment methods
  • Security deposit clause
  • Pet provision
  • Lead-based paint disclosure

Disclosures

A lease agreement must include certain disclosures which are expressly required to be made. These disclosures relate to the property in question and its condition. All the various parties should be aware of these guidelines before entering into a lease agreement. It is in their interest to ensure that they read and understand these disclosures to avoid legal measures and assuming unwarranted liability.

A residential lease agreement in Pennsylvania will contain the following disclosures:

Lead-based paint disclosure

Lead paint is a known health hazard, and any property with lead-based paint must be handled mainly. The current or prior tenants of a property are not permitted to remove the paint themselves or carry out renovations as this can release lead dust into the air. A landlord must provide every tenant who signs a lease agreement with information regarding the presence of lead paint in the home and how to handle it correctly through a disclosure form and an educative pamphlet. This disclosure requires (42 U.S. Code § 4852d) for all rental units constructed before 1979.

Capacity for the landlord to distrain for rent

This disclosure necessitates a landlord to inform the tenant that they possess the right to seize their personal property in case of non-payment. This is an enacted tenancy law under (The Tenant Act of 1951 § 20.302). Landlords should exercise this right under specific guidelines; the landlord must issue a 5-day notice before seizing the property, and collection of property should be done between 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. Also, any possessions that are exempted from this right should not be seized.

Consumer notice for tenants

A consumer notice should be issued to the tenant if the person showing the property to the tenant has an interest in that property. Interest can stem from ownership, employment by the property owner, or if the person is performing this function as a result of an exclusive listing agreement or property management agreement. This disclosure satisfies the requirements of (§ 35.336) and must be issued at the first encounter between the tenant and the individual.

Notice of abandoned personal property

Landlords are obligated to notify tenants of any property within the premises that are presumed to be abandoned through notice according to (68 P.S. § 505.1). After issuing the notice, this property should be retained for at least ten days.

Security deposit notice

Landlords are legally allowed to charge security deposits. However, if the landlord will charge a security deposit, it must not exceed $100. The law also stipulates that the security deposit be held in a state or federal-regulated financial institution. Additionally, the landlord must provide the tenant with a written notice indicating the name and address of this institution as per (68 P.S. § 511.2(a)).  

Landlords should note that they can only withhold funds from a tenant’s security deposit for damaged property, rent payments, and any outstanding balance if a tenant defaults on the lease agreement. Additionally, landlords are prohibited from using tenants’ security deposits for any other purpose.

Pennsylvania Standard Residential Lease Agreement Form

If you are contemplating renting your property, whether, for vacation or business reasons, the Pennsylvania lease agreement form is valuable to help you get started. This document provides all of the necessary information to ensure your lease agreement is compliant with state and federal landlord-tenant laws. Readers can download this form from this website for free. The form contains all the information in plain and easy-to-understand language, making it an ideal document for landlords and tenants alike. In addition, the standard form is customizable; thus, it accommodates any modifications necessary to create a mutually beneficial lease agreement in Pennsylvania.

 standard lease agreement pdf

 pa residential lease agreement pdf

    Laws for Landlords and Tenants

    Beyond the disclosure requirements set out above, several laws must be adhered to when signing a lease agreement in Pennsylvania. Failure to do so may cause disputes and, consequently, penalties or other legal actions against both parties.

    The most common laws are as follows:

    Landlord’s access to the property

    Landlords need to be granted access to their tenants’ homes to perform maintenance or repairs on the property or other actions. This can include water leaks, flooding, pest control, etc. No statute in Pennsylvania stipulates how much advance notice has to be given by the landlord before entering the premises. However, landlords are entitled to enter tenants’ private dwellings during reasonable hours – 24-hour notice is considered reasonable.

    Security deposit maximum

    If a landlord is to charge a security deposit, they cannot charge more than two months’ rent. This amount should be recorded in writing according to (§ 68.250.511).

    Security deposit return

    A landlord must return a tenant’s security deposit within 30 days of the termination of the lease agreement according to (§ 68.250.512). This should include justification for any charges deducted from their deposit. Additionally, landlords are prohibited from retaining any portion of this deposit for damages that may be deemed as normal wear and tear or issues beyond the tenant’s control.

    Late fee

    Landlords are permitted to charge a late fee for late payments. Both parties must agree on the late fee before signing the lease agreement. This fee will be charged if the tenant misses a payment after the due date and grace period (if any) outlined in the Pennsylvania residential lease agreement form.

    NSF check

    Pennsylvania landlords can deduct an NSF check fee for all bounced or returned checks. The fee should not exceed $50 and can only be charged if this consequence has been expressly communicated in the residential lease agreement – (§ 18.4105e).

    Conclusion

    It is essential that landlords and tenants alike understand the laws governing their relationship; this will allow them to avoid breaking the law and safeguard them from financial ruin. Using a Pennsylvania lease agreement ensures these laws are reflected in the lease agreement to avoid applicable consequences. This form can be used by all parties involved in residential leasing, from tenants, landlords, real estate agents, and attorneys to realtors. Lastly, note that the provisions of this form are precisely drafted based on real estate law in Pennsylvania and may thus differ from other jurisdictions or states.

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