Buying or selling a home can be an overwhelming process for a North Carolina resident. They may consult with experts about the strength of their purchase offers, the soundness of their decisions to accept or reject counter-offers, and the problems they may anticipate when they move to close. However, there is another realm of residential real estate law that can be equally complex even though it does not involve permanent transfers of real property: residential leases.

A person who wishes to rent a home from another party generally must enter into a residential lease agreement with the property’s owner. Residential lease agreements exist to give both renters and owners clear guidance on the rules and responsibilities that will govern each as they enter into a legal property-based relationship. Having a residential lease agreement reviewed by a real estate attorney prior to signing can be a good way for a renter or an owner to avoid a potentially difficult situation later on.

From the perspective of a renter, a residential lease agreement should clearly state when the lease is valid, how much and when payments on the lease are expected, and what activities may be prohibited by the property owner. Property owners should make sure that they have remedies to collect missed rent payments from their tenants and protected rights to ensure that they can enter their properties if their tenants violate terms of their lease contracts.

A residential lease agreement can become a significant legal document once the parties work out appropriate terms to protect their interests and rights. The details of each residential lease agreement should meet the needs of the specific parties that sign it and therefore individual consultation with real estate attorneys is advisable for those readers who plan to execute these specific forms of agreements.