Today, more and more people decide to lease the property. This is because they might not have the resources to purchase their property or don’t want to commit to a particular residence. The reasons for leasing the property vary depending on the situation and the individual who is leasing the property. A Texas Residential Lease Agreement is a legal contract that binds a tenant and a landlord once they agree on mutual terms of renting and leasing a residential property.
Every country and state have its own rules regarding renting and leasing a residential property. If you’re located in Texas, you can expect many rules and guidelines in your rental agreement. This article will help you go through the main rules and guidelines of the Texas residential lease agreement.
What is the Texas Residential Lease Agreement?
A Texas residential lease agreement is a legal document that outlines the terms and conditions of renting a residential property. It is signed by a landlord and a tenant, after which the two parties are legally bound to respect the rules and guidelines covered in the document.
This agreement is a document written with all the relevant landlord-tenant laws in mind. However, since every state has its unique laws, it is essential to draft a document that will respect the renting property conditions for your specific region. Before signing the residential lease agreement in Texas, the tenant must undergo credit verification and complete the application process. Then, when the application gets approved by the landlord, the two parties can sign the rental agreement.
The landlord decides whether they want to rent out the entire or a portion of their property for a specific fee. Both parties must agree to respect the terms and conditions of the lease agreement. Also, most lease agreements have a 1-year term, after which they can be renewed if needed.
Generally, a standard Texas residential lease agreement contains the following information:
- The lease terms
- The property description
- The rental price
- The penalties for late rent payments
- The security deposit amount.
Landlord’s and Tenant’s Laws
As already mentioned, the Texas residential lease agreement must respect particular landlords’ and tenants’ laws. From security deposits to domestic violence laws, here are all the essentials:
A security deposit is a specific sum given to a landlord as a guarantee to move in and care for the residential property.
Different properties will have different rent amounts and security deposit fees. However, there’s no law regarding the maximum-security deposit amount. That means there’s no limit to the amount a landlord can request from a tenant to pay the security deposit.
However, there are laws in place concerning security deposit returns. Namely, the landlord must return the total amount of the security deposit within thirty (30) days after the end of the lease agreement for residential properties. The law code for residential security deposit returns is § 92.103.
Security deposit return laws are different when renting commercial property. In that case, the due date for returning a tenant’s security deposit under § 93.005 is sixty (60) days after the end of the commercial lease agreement.
Since landlords are the actual property owners, they don’t have to provide their tenants with a notice or timeframe before entering the rented-out property. However, although landlords have the full right of entry, they’re strongly encouraged to give helpful notice to their tenants. You can learn more about the landlord’s right of entry by checking out the law code § 92.0081.
Some failures and repairs are unavoidable when using and living on a residential property. The landlord’s responsibility is to repair all material defects found on the property. If a landlord can’t do that, the tenant must receive information about the available remedies for the needed repairs. More information about the failure to repair material defects is provided in the law code § 92.056.
When domestic violence is incorporated into the residential lease agreement, special laws and obligations are in place.
Namely, domestic violence victims have the right to break the residential lease agreement in Texas without any future rent obligations according to § 92.016. Nevertheless, doing so requires the victims to go through specific procedures to look over all aspects of the situation.
Every residential lease agreement contains information regarding the rent due date according to the law code § 92.019(a)(3). Landlords are strongly encouraged to discuss the rent due date with their future tenants and determine the best date for both parties.
Furthermore, landlords must give their tenants a grace period for the arrival of late payments. The grace period for renting residential property in Texas is two (2) full days, after which late payment fees can be applied.
In addition to landlord’s and tenant’s laws, it’s crucial to cover the essential disclosures. So, here are the most critical disclosures for Texas residential lease agreements:
The ownership and management disclosure under the law code § 92.201 focuses on keeping tenants informed about the contact information of people responsible for the property. Landlords are obligated to provide tenants with the names and addresses of dwelling titleholders or anyone who manages the property.
According to the law code § 4852(d), if a property has been built before 1978, the federal law requires the landlords to include lead-based paint disclosure as a part of the residential lease agreement in Texas. In addition, the disclosure about lead-based paint must be signed both by the landlords and their tenants.
The parking rules addendum uses the law code § 92.0131 to disclose information about the parking spaces and areas. It also discloses the parking and towing policies for tenants of multi-unit complexes, which gives more information about any applicable vehicle towing or parking policies in the specified area. The addendum related to parking rules must be attached to the agreement and signed by the tenant.
Naturally, there are special conditions under which the residential lease agreement can be cancelled. Therefore, the rental agreement must include a statement that’ll closely define the special conditions of the agreement cancellation, as per the law code § 92.016(f).
In most cases, the following sentence is used:
“Tenants may have special statutory rights to terminate the lease early in certain situations involving family violence or a military deployment or transfer.”
The § 92.056 disclosure of the tenant’s remedies is essential for situations where the landlord can’t complete the necessary property repairs within seven (7) days. The disclosure contains the tenant’s remedies that tenants can use to secure the needed repairs. For instance, the tenants can hire contractors to carry out the necessary repairs and deduct the repair amount from the upcoming month’s rent.
Another disclosure that should be part of the residential agreement is under the law code § 92.008(h). It’s the right of a landlord to interrupt utilities if they aren’t paid on time. Essentially, landlords have the right to interrupt their tenants’ electricity service if they fail to pay the utility bills on time.
Once the landlord gives its tenant a written notice about interrupting their electricity service, landlords have the right to proceed with the interruption.
Federal law obliges landlords in all states, including Texas, to include specific information relevant to the lease in their residential lease agreements. If you aren’t sure how to craft a detailed and accurate lease agreement, you can consult this website for your help. The free downloadable Texas residential lease agreement guide and templates can create complete agreements in minutes. All you must do is follow the steps and fill in the missing information about the landlord, the tenant, and the property itself.
As a result, you’ll end up with a legitimate, detailed, and reliable lease agreement that’ll ensure all parties are on the same page and understand the terms and conditions of leasing the property.
The Texas residential lease agreement is an obligatory document that must be signed between tenants and their landlords. By drafting a quality rental agreement, one would be protecting the rights of both parties. Hence, it is crucial to finalize the deal through a lease agreement to avoid future legal issues.
This guide will surely help you get yourself familiar with all the necessary information to be included in the document. Once you go through this post and study the obligatory elements, you’ll be able to write a good one. After all, the free downloadable Texas residential lease agreement templates allow you to get a proper agreement in a few quick seconds.