A contract in which people living in a room or rental unit agree to terms, conditions, and responsibilities is called roommate agreement. You can get a free roommate agreement from LawDepot. These are the terms, which are included in the agreement.
- Agreement date
- Roommates names
- Property address
- Security deposit and a portion of the rent of each roommate
- A portion of utility that each roommate will pay
- House rules, duties, and restrictions
- Termination of tenancy
- Other terms as per the suggestion of the roommates
Why a roommate agreement?
Roommates can make a lot of informal agreements among themselves, which can be regarding rent, sharing cores, paying bills, etc. The oral agreements are such that people forget them easily or can misunderstand it. If these agreements are in written form, then each roommate will take responsibility regarding his rent share and other responsibilities and duties.
A written roommate agreement will force the roommates to take their responsibilities seriously and also follow the rules. It will also help the tenants to handle the disputes
Difference between roommate agreement and lease
A lease is a contract between the landlord and each roommate. The lease will include the payment of rent. If all the roommates have taken a single lease, they have to pay the rent along with other charges as mentioned in the lease. In case, a roommate leaves, then others are liable to pay the rent and other charges.
The roommate contract is an agreement among the roommate in which their rent share and other responsibilities are mentioned. The roommate agreement has nothing to do with the landlord.
Division of rent in the roommate agreement
The rent can be divided equally or unequally among the roommates. Rather than receiving separate cheques from each roommate, landlords prefer a single cheque. A roommate can take the responsibility of giving the rent cheque and other roommates can pay their share to him.
It is a deposit paid by a tenant to the landlord. It is a guarantee of fulfilling all the terms and conditions by the tenant mentioned in the lease. The security deposit is paid when a tenant signs the lease. In case of a shared apartment, each roommate has to pay a separate security deposit. If one roommate leaves before the termination of the lease, he will not be refunded until all the roommates leave the hose.
Division of the cost of utility
Apart from paying rent, the roommates should also include the cost of each utility that they will be using. Here are the things, which can be included in the cost of utility.
- Name of the person who will pay the bill
- The responsibility of payment to the utility company
- Usage of house phone even after having the mobile phone
- Payment of utility which some roommates are not using
Termination of tenancy
There can be a situation that a roommate has to leave the tenancy before the termination of the lease. In such a case, he can be a victim of an eviction lawsuit. If the landlord relieves him of the lease, then the roommate will not have any legal obligation.
It can be said that the roommate agreement is necessary as there will be no disputes among them and the lease can last long.