You might have thought that leasing and renting were the same thing. However, when you decide to rent a property you will need to decide whether or not you want to sign a lease or a rental agreement. While these terms are often used interchangeably, they are very different in meaning. It is important that you understand these differences before making any final decisions.
What is a Lease?
A lease agreement is a term that is set for about the next six months to a year. During this time period the tenant agrees that they will stay in the property and pay rent. During the specified time frame both the tenant and the landlord must uphold their parts of the agreement. For instance the tenant must pay rent monthly and follow the code of conduct rules that are set forth in the lease.
With a lease, neither party is allowed to change the terms of the agreement until that time period is up or unless both parties agree to the change. Tenants are not allowed to vacate the premises without it being known as a breach of lease. If they do, they could be held liable for the rest of the rent under the lease and/or responsible for finding someone else to rent the home. If you’re looking for stability and wish to lock in on a property for a set amount of time then a lease is a great idea.
What Are Rental Agreements?
Rental agreements are drafted on a month to month basis with no set time of residence. At the end of each month the landlord and the tenant are free to change the rental agreement as long as it falls in line with laws set within that area. Some of the changes might involve increasing the rent, changing the initial agreement, or asking to vacate the property. However, it should be noted that most states require both landlord and tenant to give 30 day notice before making any changes to the rental agreement.
Rental agreements are beneficial if you’re not sure exactly where you want to live or how long you will stay in a residence. This is great for students, military professionals, and others who might travel for work. If you appreciate the flexibility of month to month agreements, this is going to be right up your alley.
Most rental agreements renew within 30 days. If there are no changes needed, there is no need to give notice about the renewals.
Deciding to lease or rent a home will come down to personal preference. Stability, locking into agreements and responsibilities, and having a long term place of residence might be ideal for you. If so, then your best option is to consider leasing a property. However, if you’re new to renting, not sure if you’re going to stay in the location you’re renting in, or you constantly move around for work or school, then a rental agreement is ideal for you. At the end of the day it all boils down to your personal preferences and what makes your living situations better.