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Home Q&A Forum Drafting a residential lease agreement?

Landlord Tenant

Residential Lease Agreement

Washington

Asked on Sep 10, 2023

Drafting a residential lease agreement?

I am a new landlord looking to start renting out a residential home in the next few months. I need to draft a residential lease agreement that meets the legal requirements of my state and ensures the rights of both myself and the tenant are protected. I am looking for legal advice to make sure I draft a comprehensive and legally compliant lease agreement.

1 Attorney answer

Answer

Landlord Tenant

Washington

Answered 308 days ago

Merry A.

ContractsCounsel verified

Business Lawyer
Licensed in Washington
Free Consultation

I am a WA State attorney, and I counsel both landlords and tenants in WA who end up having landlord/tenant conflicts. It would be smart of you to have your first lease draft reviewed by a knowledgeable WA State landlord tenant law attorney. The biggest problems that arise include return of a security deposit and/or billing for additional costs after move out; tenants failure to comply with terms of the lease and/or HOA rules; and issues/questions regarding renewal of the lease. The Residential Landlord Tenant Law can be found here: https://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=59.18 Two changes were made in 2023 alone. In addition, some cities, like Seattle, and unincorporated King County, have additional requirements to be aware of. You may want to consider joining an association of WA landlords - I think there's a statewide one, and there may be county or city organizations. Some of these can provide you with first draft leases and/or provide guidance, classes, and counseling. There are many places to buy leases online, but some of these don't address the fine points regarding notice to vacate or raise rent, issues arising from paying last month's rent ahead, whether or not security deposits can be applied toward the last month's rent, and so forth. An attorney who specializes in landlord-tenant law can provide you with your first lease and also be available on an ongoing basis for consultations from time to time.

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