- What is a Lease in Georgia
- Types of Georgia Lease Agreements
- Disclosures for Georgia Lease Agreements
- Georgia Lease Agreement Laws
- Georgia Residential Lease Agreement Sample
- FAQs About Georgia Lease Agreement
Georgia Lease Agreement
What is a Lease in Georgia
A lease agreement is a legally binding contract between a landlord and a tenant. This is written to conform to state laws where the property is located. In Georgia these allow both parties to comply with a series of set terms for a specified number of months or years.
A lease agreement should contain the following details:
How long the tenant may legally reside in the property
How much rent should be paid
Information about the security deposits necessary
When rental installments are due
Any additional costs that must be serviced by the tenant
The rules regarding the proper use of the property
Situations that constitute lease violation eviction procedures
Types of Georgia Lease Agreements
There are many types of GA lease agreement forms that can be used to manage and legally bind many different types of rental situations. They allow landlords to rent out various types of property they might have and for tenants to find the best kind of tenancy for their needs.
The most common types of lease agreements in Georgia include:
Standard residential lease agreements: Under a standard lease agreement both the landlord and tenant commit to a fixed set of terms that last for a series of months or years.
Month-to-month rental agreements: Month-to-month lease agreements will often have similar basic terms to standard residential lease contracts. However, they differ as they can be renewed or ended on a month-by-month basis. Their terms may also be flexibly altered each month.
Commercial lease agreements: Commercial leases are provided by landlords of retail property to tenants that intend to use the real estate to run a business.
Room rental agreements: In rental properties with shared living areas a room rental agreement can be used to rent a singular bedroom.
Lease to Own Agreement: This type of agreement features an option for the tenant to eventually purchase the property. It also includes the necessary terms and conditions for this transaction to eventually occur.
Sublease Agreement: a Georgia sublease agreement allows tenants to reassign or ‘sublease’ the property to another individual. This requires the property landlord’s permission and must be specifically allowed in the original lease.
Disclosures for Georgia Lease Agreements
Georgia lease agreements must contain a few disclosures and addendums when they are completed and signed. This is to properly inform the tenant of any health risks or potential issues with the property or details about how the property is managed that they must be aware of.
These essential addendums include the following:
Flood zone disclosure: Tenants must be informed if the property they are renting is located in a flood zone (GA Code § 44-7-20). Landlords can learn whether this is the case by using the FEMA Flood Zone Lookup Tool.
Lead paint disclosure: If the rental unit is in a building constructed before 1978, the landlord or their agent must disclose whether lead paint can be found on the property and must provide safety information for any located on the premises (GA Rule 391.3.24).
Agent/owner identification: The lease agreement must include a section or an addendum that discloses the contact information of the landlord or a chosen agent who will act on their behalf.
Georgia Lease Agreement Laws
A GA lease agreement must be written and signed within the laws of Georgia state, otherwise, it will be legally contestable and can be declared invalid and block either party from recourse if a violation is committed. These will police how you start and end the contract and control what procedures you can reasonably ask a tenant to follow.
The most important laws to consider when you are renting a property in Georgia include:
Security deposits: There is no limit to the amount GA landlords can charge if the property is a non-rent control unit. This must be returned to the tenant within one month of vacating the property and returning the keys. Landlords must also give advance notice of any deductions (O.C.G.A. § 44-7-31).
Landlord’s right to enter: Landlords can enter the rental property by without having to give advance notice (a written notice is recommended). However, entry is only allowed according to the conditions specified within the lease agreement. Depending on the agreement in question, this may mean that an entry notification is necessary or that entering is only allowed in the case of an emergency (O.C.G.A. § 44-7-1).
Move-in checklist: Tenants must be provided with a rental inspection checklist when moving into the property (O.C.G.A. § 44-7-33)
Georgia Residential Lease Agreement Sample
Before beginning the process of creating a residential lease agreement in Georgia it is sensible to review an example document first. Use our GA lease agreement sample below to find out more about the structure and contents of a fully-fledged rental contract.
FAQs About Georgia Lease Agreement
It is important to carefully prepare a Georgia lease agreement to suit the needs of the landlord and tenant exactly. To help demystify the process a little simply review our FAQs below to learn more about the specificities of rental contracts in Georgia.
Lease agreement or rental agreement?
There is a key difference between a Georgia lease agreement and a Georgia rental agreement, which is the length of duration that they each cover.
Lease agreements are normally longer-term arrangements that can last several months or even years, in which their terms remain fixed. Rental agreements on the other hand are shorter-term in nature but are more flexible and may be changed on a weekly or monthly basis.
Can a lease be negotiated in georgia?
Yes, a Georgia residential lease agreement can be negotiated before it is signed. The landlord and tenant will usually discuss the terms before the agreement is put into action. However, once a lease agreement is signed it cannot be altered until it comes to its natural end or is canceled.
What are the advantages of a written lease?
It’s important to have a written GA lease agreement in operation whether you are a landlord or a tenant. There are many advantages to having a formal contract for a rental property such as the right to recourse if the terms are violated and the protection of important legal rights for rental property owners and residents.