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If you would like to lease rooms in your rental property, you'll need to draw up a room rental agreement. This legal document is intended to detail the terms and conditions of the arrangement.

Suppose you've never created this type of contract before. In that case, you can find all the information you need right here! Keep reading to learn how to create the perfect Arizona roommate agreement that complies with state and federal laws.

Room Rental Agreement

The Arizona room rental agreement, also called a roommate agreement (when the landlord plays no part in the arrangement), is a legally binding document that specifies co-tenancy conditions, including each tenant's obligations. To comply with Arizona state law, every co-tenant must sign the agreement.

An Arizona room rental agreement will cover problems such as security deposit requirements, shared utilities, rent, and more. Depending on the kind of agreement you have, the individual leasing the room will pay the monthly rent to the landlord or original tenant.

Why Use One?

Many landlords allow this type of rental agreement to let all the parties share the costs. If you find that your tenant is struggling to meet their financial obligations each month, leasing a room in the rental unit to another tenant could help to ease the burden.

Traditionally, college students have been the majority of people who share a rental unit. Nowadays, being attached close to another tenant is becoming increasingly popular for adults of all ages because of the rising cost of living.

This arrangement eases the financial burden and can help ensure that the property isn't left vacant while the original tenant is away.

Not Having One

Whether it's a close buddy or a total stranger, you must have heard people complain about how difficult it can be to share a home with someone else. When occupying a shared, rented space, tenants are often attached close, and issues will undoubtedly arise. As the saying goes, prevention is always better than sacrifice.

The payment of rent and other obligations, as well as other housemates occasionally breaking the rules outlined in the main rental contract with the landlord, are some of the frequent issues that roommates run into.

By establishing clear boundaries and responsibilities, a rental lease document can prevent conflicts by providing all the terms of the arrangement. It is important to run a background check on candidates before entering into this type of agreement to avoid any future issues.

Moreover, it is also easier to evict a tenant from a rental unit if you have a rental contract detailing all the terms of the lease, as tenants may not know the rules you have set if you do not provide such a document.

Roommate Agreement

Although "room rental agreement" and "roommate agreement" are often used interchangeably, there is an important difference to note.

An Arizona roommate agreement is created when the landlord plays no part in the arrangement. Roommate agreements detail the terms and conditions of renting a room to another tenant, where the original tenant is responsible for collecting rent and making payments to the landlord.

On the other hand, a room rental agreement is designed to explain the terms of leasing a property to another tenant. When this rental lease document is used, the landlord and the original tenant are fully involved in the tenancy. This document may only be valid if it has been signed by the landlord.

How to Write One

Room rental agreements are generally created by the landlord. However, if you've never drawn one up before, you might want to take note of a few essential inclusions and disclosures. We'll provide all the information you need in the section below.

Information About All the Parties Involved

If the room rental agreement has a particular end date, be sure to include this information in the first section of the lease contract. Use that date or a later one if the initial lease agreement specifies a termination date.

Include all participants' full names and contact details in this section. Add the phone numbers for the property manager (if applicable) and the landlord for the new tenant to utilize in case of an emergency.

Shared Utilities

Provide the percentage the roommate will contribute if utilities are shared between roommates in the rental unit.

Because the rooms are often attached close, it is important to specify precisely how the cost will be distributed. The due date for the utility payment should also be determined. If a security deposit is required for these services, specify how much of the utility security deposit each roommate will contribute.

Monthly Rent

Indicate the monthly (or weekly) rent due date as well as the amount that the new tenant will be required to pay. Keep in mind the accepted payment methods, which include cash, money orders, and personal checks. List any late payment penalties and the date they take effect. Late rent fees typically apply after five days of non-payment.

Security Deposit

According to Arizona law, a security deposit cannot exceed 1.5 months' worth of rent. Therefore, a roommate's security deposit must not exceed this sum and should be calculated proportionately according to the space he or she occupies.

In this section of the rental lease document, you will need to specify the amount the roommate will be required to pay.

Any percentage of the security deposit that is non-refundable, if any, must be made apparent. Arizona statute Section 33-1321(D) mandates that the security deposit be returned within 14 days (excluding weekends and holidays) of the roommate's departure, less any reasonable charges for the expense of repairing any damages the roommate may have caused to the property.

Shared Expenses and Responsibilities

Declare any additional costs that will be divided, such as food bills, along with the breakdown of who will pay what. Indicate how common parking or storage spaces are to be used if they are available with the rental unit.

If the new tenant is responsible for helping to maintain the rental unit's communal areas, specify how it will work.

Rules and Additional Terms

Your room rental agreement should also include other rules. Specify limitations in terms of smoking, pets, and parking to ensure that there are no gray areas. You can also detail the conditions and restrictions when guests are invited to the rental unit.

Once all these details have been added to the room rental lease document, you will need to have it signed by all the parties involved.

Local Laws

When drawing up a room rental agreement, it is important to take note of certain federal and state laws that may apply.

Section 33-1315 of state law governing rental agreements details specific terms landlords may not include in their contracts, such as requiring the tenant to pay the landlord's attorney fees. Including these terms is against the law.

Provide the new tenant with a copy of the lead-based paint hazard warning if the property was constructed prior to 1978. Additionally, it is necessary to provide any tenant with instructional information regarding bed bugs, as detailed in Section 33-1319.

Potential Issues

Choosing a suitable roommate for your current tenant is important, as they will be living with them full-time. To prevent problems, a roommate screening service can assist in finding tenants with complementary characteristics. Keep in mind that two people's lifestyles may differ greatly even though they share the same interests.

Another thing to think about when creating this type of agreement is evictions. The truth is that evicting one of your tenants can difficult and frustrating. Another important issue to note is that one roommate's behavior may result in everyone being evicted.

Fortunately, Arizona is generally considered a landlord-friendly state, so if your new tenant fails to pay rent or sells drugs on the property, evicting them shouldn't be too much of a challenge. As with all tenants, conducting a background check on the candidate is essential to ensure that the person you're allowing onto your property is reliable and trustworthy.

Build Your Own

Now that you know everything that needs to be included in this type of agreement, along with the relevant laws, it's time to draw up your own rental lease document. We have a free form that you can edit. You'll find it here:

However, if you're looking for a way to personalize your agreement a little more, this may not be the best option. Moreover, suppose you have multiple contracts to draw up. In that case, using this method can be time-consuming.

Instead, you can use our software to create flawless documents ready to be signed in no time. DoorLoop also provides a number of other features, including background checks, property listings, and so much more!

eSignature

If you need to sign a room rental or roommate agreement with a new tenant, you want to make the process as easy and efficient as possible.

With DoorLoop, you can get your agreements and templates eSigned in a few seconds. You can also get to the eSignature step much faster by creating reusable templates that are autofilled with tenants' information.

DoorLoop also makes it so simple to find the best tenants in the first place by syndicating your listings on popular websites Zillow, Trulia, Hotpads, Apartments.com, and more. You can also make sure you're bringing in the best tenants by screening your prospects in seconds through DoorLoop.

For more information about DoorLoop, learn more or schedule a free demo.

Final Thoughts

Creating a room rental agreement isn’t as difficult as you might think. With the right tools and guidance, you can create a compliant document that will hold you in good stead for the duration of the roommate’s tenancy.

The truth is that managing tenants in a shared arrangement can be challenging. Keeping track of payments and generating compliant agreements can be stressful. Fortunately, DoorLoop has been designed to make your life easier!

Try it out for yourself by booking your free demo!

FAQs

Do I have to run a background check before leasing a room?

While running a background check on a candidate is not mandatory, it can save you a lot of trouble later on. It would be best if you had the potential tenant complete a rental application form and complete the necessary screening before giving the go-ahead.

Is there a limit imposed on the amount I can charge a roommate for the security deposit?

Yes. Arizona caps the amount landlords may charge as a security deposit for a rental unit at one and a half times the monthly rent. This means that the deposit collected from all tenants must not exceed this amount.

Should I allow a new tenant to lease a room without drawing up a room rental agreement?

No. These agreements are designed to detail the terms of a lease, so not providing the roommate with a set of rules will mean that he or she may do something you are not happy with. If you do not want pets on the property, for example, if you do not provide this rule in a formal agreement, the new tenant may bring a pet with them.

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David Bitton

David is the co-founder & CMO of DoorLoop, a best-selling author, legal CLE speaker, and real estate investor. When he's not hanging with his three children, he's writing articles here!