A Brief Introduction About the Lodger Agreement
Getting a lodger for your spare room can be an exciting and lucrative deal for a homeowner. It is a win-win situation for the property owner and the lodger. The former gets to earn income from their free property while the lodger gets cheap accommodation. But before you find the lodger, you must draw the lodger agreement to ensure a legal and safe deal.
A lodger agreement is a legal contract that lays out the necessary terms and conditions that the lodger and landlord need to follow. Though the property owner doesn’t need to draw such a contract, it’s a good idea to get the lodger agreement signed before settling the deal.
Who Takes the Lodger Agreement?
The lodger agreements are signed by the lodger (the person looking for the rental accommodation) and the landlord (the person who agrees to share the apartment with a lodger). The landlord is responsible for drafting the lodger agreement contract and handing over the copy to the lodger so that both parties get enough time to go over the contract.
Purpose of the Lodger Agreement
Technically, the agreement isn’t mandatory. But it helps the landlord and lodger to get into a safe deal by signing this contract. Once the contract is signed, both parties will have to abide by the given terms. The main purpose of drafting a lodger contract is that it specifies the responsibilities of the lodger and landlord towards each other.
From payment terms to privacy and type of stay, every rule is clearly mentioned in this contract. Should any party file a dispute, the contract can be used as the evidence.
Contents of the Lodger Agreement
The main contents of the lodger agreement are as follows:
- Identification: The contract starts with the identification, i.e., name, address, and contact information of each party. The landlord and lodger must mention their identities and contact details in this section.
- Rent: This section specifies the rental information. It clarifies the amount of rent the lodger is supposed to pay to the landlord. Furthermore, the method and date of payment can also be specified under this section.
- Type of Stay: The landlord has to mention the type of stay the lodger wants i.e., whether they need a long-term or fixed stay or a periodic accommodation.
- Deposit: The landlord can ask the lodger to pay an upfront rental fee as a security deposit. Should the lodger fail to pay the rent or damage the property or appliances, the landlord can use the security deposit to cover the financial issues.
- Eviction: The lodger tenancy agreement features a special clause that allows the landlord to evict the lodger from the house anytime they want. This happens when the lodger has caused serious damage to the property or broken the house-stay rules.
- Terms and Conditions: The section describes all the necessary terms that the lodger has to abide by until they leave the house.
How to Draft the Lodger Agreement?
The landlord is responsible for drafting this agreement. You can check the lodger agreement template to get an insight into the contents of the contract. However, both parties can add additional clauses such as the privacy of the lodger, security terms, and more with mutual consent. Here is how to draft the lodger agreement.
- Name and Contact details: Just like the standard rental agreements, this contract form should begin with the identity details of each party.
- Terms and Conditions: Add all the terms and conditions that the lodger and landlord are supposed to abide by.
- Penalties and Compensation: Under this section, mention the penalties of each party in the case of contract violation or the breach of any clause.
- Payment Terms: This section should stipulate the total rental payment the lodger has agreed to pay. Any upfront fee, security deposit, and the due payment can be mentioned here.
- Contract term: How long will the contract be valid for? Is the user staying at your apartment for a fixed period or a temporary term?
The important aspect of this deal is that both parties must read, understand, and accept all the clauses mentioned in the simple lodger agreement. You must understand the contract before settling a deal.
[ Also Read: Accommodation agreement ]
Benefits & Drawbacks of the Lodger Agreement
- Specifies Obligations: The lodger agreement contract lays out all the obligations each party has to abide by.
- Avoid confusion: By signing a contract, you can avoid future confusion. Even if any party fails to stick to their obligations, you will have a contract to prove yourself and demand compensation.
- Easy to Draft: You can look at the lodger agreement sample and draft one. The terms and conditions are pretty simple. You can even add extra clauses with each party’s approval.
- Expensive: You may end up spending hundreds of bucks on attorney and legal forms. This form should be avoided if the lodger and landlord are familiar with each other.
What Happens in Case of Violation?
You can risk the contract if you violate any or multiple terms specified in the contract. Each party has to abide by the mentioned conditions. Failure to do so can result in contract termination. You may no longer be able to live in the same apartment as a landlord. Failure to pay rent, serious damages to the property, breaking the privacy terms, and other such violations(1) can terminate the deal.
The landlord and lodger must understand what is a lodger agreement, its importance, and the mentioned terms before signing the contract. To ensure a safe and healthy relationship, signing a lodger agreement form is a must.