Free South Carolina Residential Lease Agreement

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What is a South Carolina Standard Lease Agreement

An SC 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 South Carolina these allow both parties to comply with a series of set terms for a specified number of months or years.

Rental contracts and lease agreements have a lot of similarities as they both set out payment plans and the terms of use for a house or apartment. However, the big difference is the duration that they cover. Rental agreements usually only cover short-term tenancies of a few months at a time or month-to-month contracts.

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 South Carolina Lease Agreements

There are many types of South Carolina 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 South Carolina include:

  • Standard residential lease agreements: Under a standard SC lease agreement both the landlord and tenant commit to a fixed set of terms that last for a series of months or years.
  • Lease with option to purchase agreements: Lease agreements with rent-to-own options are designed for tenants that wish to buy the property they are renting. This requires them to pay a sum of money each month, in addition to rent, to cover the costs of the principal.
  • Month-to-month rental agreements: Month-to-month SC 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.
  • Sublease Agreement: A South Carolina 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 South Carolina Lease Agreements

South Carolina 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: 

  • Agent/owner identification (§ 27-40-420): An SC 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.
  • 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.
  • Unequal deposits (§ 27-40-410): Landlords that own four (4) or more connected dwelling units and set different deposit amounts based on specific criteria must state the information used to calculate the deposit in the rental contract or display it in a conspicuous place.

South Carolina Lease Agreement Laws

An SC lease agreement must be written and signed within the laws of South Carolina 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 South Carolina include:

  • Security deposits: There is no limit on how much South Carolina landlords may charge tenants as a security deposit. However, the amount collected must be returned 30 days after the property has been returned to the owner according to § 27-40-410.
  • Landlord’s right to enter: Landlords can enter the rental property by giving 24 hours’ advance notice (a written notice is recommended). They may only do so between the hours detailed in § 27-40-530.

South Carolina Residential Lease Agreement Sample

Before beginning the process of creating a residential lease agreement in South Carolina it is sensible to review an example document first. Use our South Carolina lease agreement sample below to find out more about the structure and contents of a fully-fledged rental contract.

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South Carolina Residential Lease Agreement Form

FAQs About South Carolina Lease Agreement

It is important to carefully prepare a South Carolina 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 South Carolina.

South Carolina Lease Agreement or Rental Agreement?

There is a key difference between a South Carolina lease agreementand a/an South Carolina 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.

How to Write an SC Lease Termination Letter?

If either the landlord or tenant for any reason needs to terminate a South Carolina lease agreement early, they must provide the correct amount of notice in a written SC lease termination letter.

This letter needs to contain the following information:

  • The name of the landlord and the tenant
  • The date the letter has been written and signed
  • The name and address of the property in question
  • Information explaining why the tenancy needs to be terminated early
  • The reason the lease is being broken
  • The date that the resident will vacate the property
  • Acknowledgment of any penalties that will be incurred
  • Signature of the signing party

Can a Lease be Negotiated in South Carolina?

Yes, a South Carolina 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.

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South Carolina Residential Lease Agreement Form

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Preview of your South Carolina Residential Lease Agreement

This Lease Agreement (hereinafter, the "Lease Agreement") is dated as of _________ (hereinafter, the "Effective Date") and is entered into by and between _________ (hereinafter, the "Landlord") and the following residents:

(hereinafter, the "Tenant(s)").

The Landlord and the Tenant(s) agree as follows:

A. The Landlord is the owner of certain real property and improvements described as a house located at _________, _________, South Carolina _________ (hereinafter, the "Property").

B. The Landlord rents to the Tenant(s) and the Tenant(s) rents from the Landlord the Property according to the terms and conditions described in this Lease Agreement.

C. Unless otherwise indicated in the Lease Agreement, no other portion of the building (hereinafter, the “Building”) is included in the Lease.

D. Unless otherwise indicated in the Lease Agreement, the Property is for the sole use as a personal residence by the person(s) named above only.

The term of the Lease Agreement begins on _________ (hereinafter, the "Commencement Date", and shall continue from that date as a month-to-month tenancy.

Either party may terminate the tenancy by giving written notice of intention to terminate the tenancy at least 30 days prior to the intended termination date.

Such notices may be given on any date.

The Tenant(s) shall vacate the Property upon termination of the Lease Agreement, unless:

(i)The Landlord and the Tenant(s) have, in writing, extended this agreement or signed a new agreement.
(ii)Mandated by local rent control law.
(iii)The Landlord accepts Rent from the Tenant(s) (other than past due Rent), in which case a month-to-month tenancy shall be created which either party may terminate.

All other terms and conditions of this Agreement shall remain in full force and effect.

The Tenant(s) is hereby notified that the Owner or Landlord _________ is the Property Manager in charge of repairs or maintenance of the Property.

If the Tenant(s) has any complaint regarding any issue about the Property, _________ shall be contacted by one of the following methods:
Address: _________
Telephone: _________
Email: _________

The Tenant(s) shall pay the Landlord monthly rent in the amount of $_________ (hereinafter, the "Rent") for each full month during this lease. The full month's rent is due and payable not later than the 1st day of each month. If that day falls on a legal holiday, the Rent is due on the next business day.
Place of Payment:

The Tenant(s) shall remit all rent payment amounts owed to the Landlord under this Lease Agreement to the following address:


The Landlord may later change the person and place to which the Tenant(s) must remit the rental amounts due under this Lease Agreement.
Method of Payment:

The Tenant(s) shall pay Rent by any of the following forms of payment:

During the term of this Lease Agreement, the only individuals permitted to reside on the Property are the following:


The Tenant(s) may not allow any guest to stay on the Property longer than _________ consecutive days or _________ days in a calendar year. The Tenant(s)'s guests shall not be considered original occupants of the Property under any circumstances.

The amount of time the Tenant(s)'s guests may stay on the Property may never be longer than the time permitted by any owners' association rule or restrictive covenant or _________ consecutive days or _________ days in a calendar year, without Landlord's written permission, whichever is less.

No animal or pet shall be kept, permanently or temporarily, on or about the Property, even temporarily or with a visiting guest. As provided by law, a Service Animal(s) is not considered a pet, and every individual with a disability shall have a right to have a Service Animal(s) on the Property.

Any animal discovered on or around the Property will be considered a stray. Strays shall not be kept or fed in or about the Property. All strays will be reported to the proper authorities and removed at the Tenant(s)'s expense.

Smoking is not allowed in or on any area of the Property, including individual units and common areas, both indoors or outdoors. This policy applies to all tenants or guests. This restriction includes the use of e-cigarettes and vaping.

If the Tenant(s) contravenes this provision by smoking or allowing guests to smoke in any place on the Property, then such Tenant(s) shall be held liable for any damages caused to the Property. The violation of this provision shall be considered a just cause for the eviction of the Tenant(s) by the Landlord.

All requests for repairs must be in writing and delivered to the Landlord. The Tenant(s) may call the Landlord only if an emergency related to the condition of the Property that materially affects the physical health or safety of an ordinary tenant occurs.

The Tenant(s) may not repair or cause to be repaired any condition, regardless of the cause, without the Landlord's permission. All decisions regarding repairs, including the completion of any repair, whether to repair or replace the item, and the selection of contractors, will be at the Landlord's sole discretion.

If in an emergency, it shall become necessary to make any repairs or replacements by the Tenant(s) without prior written consent from the Landlord, at Landlord's expenses, and such repairs or replacements are found to be unsatisfactory and to have caused additional damages, the Tenant(s) shall reimburse Landlord for the cost of making such repairs.

The Tenant(s) shall be solely responsible for and shall pay expenses for all utilities and services used or consumed at the Property.

If the Tenant(s) fails to comply with any of the material provisions of this Lease Agreement or with any duties imposed on the Tenant(s) by statute or state laws, the Landlord may allow remedying the default by sending a fourteen (14) days written notice informing the Tenant(s) of such default.

Under the South Carolina Code of Laws section 27-40-710(A)(2), if the Tenant(s) does not commence to remedy the default within fourteen (14) days, the Landlord may terminate the Tenant(s)'s right to use and to occupy the Property.

Under the South Carolina Code of Laws section 27-40-710(B), if the Tenant(s) fails to pay rent when due, after delivery of a five (5) days written notice by the Landlord for payment of the rent or possession of the Property, the Landlord may terminate the Lease Agreement. The rights provided by this paragraph are cumulative in nature and are in addition to any other rights afforded by law.

The Tenant(s) shall not keep or have on the Property any article or item of a dangerous, flammable, or explosive material that might unreasonably increase the danger of fire or explosion on the Property or that might be considered hazardous or extra hazardous by any responsible insurance company.

If the Property is destroyed or rendered wholly uninhabitable by fire, storm, earthquake, or other casualties not caused by the negligence of the Tenant(s), the Tenant(s)' family, guests, agent, or visitors, this Lease Agreement shall terminate from such time, except to enforce rights that may have then accrued hereunder.

If this Lease Agreement is terminated, the Landlord shall return the Security Deposit under Section 27-40-410 and all prepaid rent. Accounting for rent in the event of termination or apportionment must be made as of the date of the fire or casualty. The Landlord may withhold the Tenant(s)'s Security Deposit or prepaid rent if the fire or casualty was due to the Tenant(s)'s negligence or otherwise caused by the Tenant(s). However, if the Landlord withholds a Security Deposit or prepaid rent, such Landlord must comply with the notice requirement in Section 27-40-410(a).

The Tenant shall not unreasonably withhold consent to the Landlord to enter into the dwelling unit to inspect the premises, make necessary or agreed repairs, decorations, alterations, or improvements, supply necessary or agreed services, or exhibit the dwelling unit to prospective purchasers, mortgagees, tenants, workmen, or contractors.

Under the South Carolina Code of Laws section 27-40-530, the Landlord or his agent may enter the dwelling unit without the consent of the Tenant(s):

(i) At any time in case of emergency.

(ii) Between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. to provide regularly scheduled periodic services such as changing furnace and air-conditioning filters, providing termite, insect, or pest treatment, and the like.

(iii) Between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. to provide services requested by the Tenant(s) and that before entering, the Landlord announces its intent to enter to perform services.

(iv) The Landlord shall not abuse the right of access or use it to harass the Tenant(s). Except in case of emergency, the Landlord shall give the Tenant(s) at least twenty-four (24) hours' notice of its intent to enter and may enter only at reasonable times.

The Tenant(s) shall not, without the prior written consent of Landlord, which may be withheld at the Landlord's sole discretion, voluntarily or involuntarily assign, this Lease Agreement or any interest herein or sublet the Property or any part thereof.

The Tenant(s) is specifically prohibited from offering all or part of the Property for short-term rentals such as through Airbnb VRBO, or other such sites or programs. Any advertising or online postings, as well as actual rentals of the Property to vacation or short-term guests, shall constitute a material breach of this Lease Agreement.

Any person who is not the Tenant(s) who occupies any portion of the Property, for any period of time whatsoever, for any compensation or consideration whatsoever (including, without limitation, the payment of money and/or trade and/or barter of other goods, services, or property occupancy rights) is NOT a guest, and such occupancy constitutes unauthorized subletting or assignment which is a substantial and material breach of this Lease Agreement.

Notices under this Lease Agreement will be given under South Carolina Code of Laws section 27-40-240. All other notices shall be sufficient if made as follows:

1) All notices to the Landlord shall be directed by personal delivery or first-class mail to the Landlord at the appropriate address set forth below, until the Tenant(s) is notified, in writing, to the contrary.

2) All notices to the Tenant(s) shall be directed by personal delivery or first-class mail to the Tenant(s) at the Leased Property or any forwarding address provided in writing by the Tenant(s) to the Landlord.


_________, _________, South Carolina _________
Such addresses may be changed from time to time by any party by providing notice as set forth above.

In general, this Lease Agreement shall be governed, construed, and interpreted under the laws of the State of South Carolina and, specifically, under the South Carolina Landlord and Tenant Act.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the Landlord and the Tenant(s) have executed this Lease Agreement in the manner prescribed by law as of the Effective Date.

By: ____________________________ Date: ______________

By: ____________________________ Date: ______________
Lease Agreement
Inspection Checklist
Address: _________, _________, South Carolina _________

The Tenant(s) has inspected the Property and states that the Property is in satisfactory condition, free of defects, except as noted below:
Bathrooms  __________________________________
Carpeting  __________________________________
Ceilings  __________________________________
Closets  __________________________________
Countertops  __________________________________
Dishwasher  __________________________________
Disposal  __________________________________
Doors  __________________________________
Fireplace  __________________________________
Lights  __________________________________
Locks  __________________________________
Refrigerator  __________________________________
Screens  __________________________________
Stove  __________________________________
Walls  __________________________________
Windows  __________________________________
Window coverings  __________________________________




By: ____________________________ Date: ______________
Acknowledged by Landlord:
By: ____________________________ Date: ______________
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