If you plan to share a space with another tenant, a room rental agreement can help you set the conditions and rights for all parties. Do you know how to draft one? Don't worry! Here, you can find all the information to write one, why you need it, its benefits, and more.
Room Rental Agreement
Also known as a room rental agreement, a Georgia roommate agreement is a contract that binds two or more tenants who share a rental property. This document defines the conditions, terms, and rules that both parties (co-tenants) must comply with when using the space.
A room rental agreement is necessary when more than one person lives in a rented property but it is not stated in the original lease agreement. Therefore, if the master tenant hopes to find a roommate with whom they share a property, this document is essential.
In Georgia, roommates can establish a room rental agreement to determine who is responsible for rent payments or utilities. Also, this signed rental contract is legally binding and allows a master tenant to add more people to the lease.
With a room rental agreement, a tenant can enforce the roommate's responsibilities and financial obligations in accordance with state law. In addition, this document protects both parties' rights. Therefore, it is crucial in case of legal action.
Under a Georgia roommate agreement, new tenants have the same rights as the master tenant in terms of the property's use. However, they must sign a new contract instead of the original lease agreement.
Why Use One?
A master tenant could decide to share a leased space through a room rental agreement when they can no longer pay the monthly rent, for example. The purpose of this document is to establish the conditions and terms when you choose to rent only a room or a portion of a rental property to a secondary lessee.
Through the room rental agreement, both parties can clarify their expectations and responsibilities to promote a harmonious living environment and avoid future problems. Additionally, this contract can be used in these scenarios:
- The secondary tenant has a partner, and you want to set boundaries on when family members are allowed to visit.
- As a master tenant, you need to divide household expenses, determining how much each party must contribute towards the costs related to the property's maintenance, for example.
- You want to keep the space private and limit how many overnight visitors the secondary tenant gets.
- With the room rental agreement, home maintenance and other related tasks are divided between both parties.
- As a tenant, this document allows you to set quiet hours to keep all tenants comfortable and to avoid disturbing your neighbors.
Not Having One
Room rental agreements have been designed to protect tenants' rights and define both parties' obligations regarding a rental unit to avoid future problems. In addition, any tenant leasing a residential property can rely on this document to establish rules and boundaries before prospective tenants move in.
With this rental contract, you can also be sure that all parties involved agree to the sublet terms. Therefore, you can have peace of mind and avoid potential conflicts.
Also, if the subtenant violates the conditions set in the room rental agreement, this document can be a key tool in requesting eviction.
Both documents are similar. However, in order to draft a Georgia roommate agreement, the landlord does not have to be involved. This document can be used by both a homeowner and a tenant looking for a roommate.
However, since the original lease agreement's conditions must be respected when a space is subleased, the landlord must sign the room rental agreement. Otherwise, the contract would not be valid.
How to Write One
If you plan to enter into a roommate agreement to share a space with another person, you should make sure to include these elements in the document:
Like other Georgia lease agreements, this document must include the date the lease is signed, the names of both parties involved, the rental property's address (must specify Zip code, state, city, and county), and start and end dates.
The term defines the amount that the new tenant or roommate must provide as collateral in the event that the property or shared space is damaged. Once the secondary tenant moves out of the property, the security deposit can be used for repairs.
If there is no damage and repairs are not necessary, the security deposit must be returned to the secondary tenant. In Georgia, this amount may vary. However, it cannot be higher than half of the monthly rent amount.
Another critical element in a roommate agreement is the landlord's information. When drafting the contract, the master tenant must provide the data of the rental unit's owner, including his name, telephone number, and address.
Notices or Disclosures
The secondary tenant or roommate must also be aware of all the disclosures set in the original lease agreement. Therefore, this document should include all related information.
As with any other Georgia rental application, the document's first few sections should include the full names of the tenants, phone numbers, email addresses, and other relevant personal information.
In addition, the Georgia room rental agreement must specify if there are other roommates sharing the property. In this case, the contract should also include their phone numbers. The landlord's contact number should also be added in this section, so the secondary tenant has the information on hand if there is an emergency.
Pet Fee Deposit
If the roommate has a pet, the master tenant can request a fee that works similarly to the security deposit. This sum can be used to repair any damage the pet may cause.
Also, if the original lease agreement includes laws regarding pets, the original tenant must ensure that the roommate receives that information. This fee may be collected as a monthly charge or as a one-time payment.
As in other Georgia lease agreements, this lease must also include the property's details after both parties have examined the unit. In this section, the master tenant must specify the address and unit number, street number, and county, especially if there are places that only those who live in the area can explore.
In this section, both parties must divide the actual rent into portions that each roommate agrees to pay each time. The secondary tenant should know the exact amount to be paid each month and any late fees, if applicable.
The roommate agreement must specify whether or not the secondary tenant is responsible for turning over their portion of the rent to the landlord or the management company. In addition, the contract must specify whether the amount each party must pay is divided according to the size of the space they rent or whether everyone must pay the same amount.
In this legal contract, both parties must make it clear that they are aware that they must share certain public services with their roommates. In Georgia, many landlords decide to pay the water or electric bills but the other utilities not covered by the landlord are the tenants' responsibility and must be added to the document as an additional expense.
The Georgia roommate agreement should also include any additional agreements, including handling repairs, who is in charge of cleaning, or guests. Generally, rooms must be cleaned individually, but responsibilities for common areas are divided.
Finally, this section includes the signature of both parties and the date. If the landlord is required to sign the document, it should also be added here.
Local Laws for Roommates
Georgia does not have strict laws regarding roommate rental agreements. However, the state requires that any residential unit built before 1978 must include a lead paint statement to properly inform tenants if living on the property poses potential hazards.
The roommate agreement should also indicate if there is a mold problem. Additionally, Georgia requires leases to have a flood disclosure if new tenants move into a unit that has flooded at least three times in the last five years or if there is a lot of flooding in the area.
Even if you screen prospective tenants and think you've found the perfect one, some issues may surface. These are the most common issues that should be addressed in the roommate agreement:
- Sleep schedules
- Boundaries to maintaining privacy
- Non-confrontational methods to address minor issues
- Boundaries on how to address inappropriate guest behaviors
- Borrowing personal items
Build your own
Do you need help drafting a Georgia room rental agreement? You have come to the right place! DoorLoop offers free templates to make the process easier. You can find them in these formats:
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.
How Much Does the Secondary Tenant Have to Pay for Rent and Security Deposit in Georgia?
The amount of the security deposit must not exceed half the amount of the monthly rent. However, the latter is defined by who rents the property.
Does the Georgia Roommate Agreement Have the Same Conditions as the Lease Agreement?
Yes! Although the roommate agreement does not generally involve the landlord, the new document must respect the conditions set in the original lease agreement.
What Happens If the Tenant Has a Pet?
You can rent a room or other shared space to a person with a pet and charge a fee as security to cover any damage it may cause as long as it doesn't violate the original lease agreement.
However, remember to inform the tenant prior to charging any additional amounts and add all this information to the new document.
Can I customize my own form or agreement?
Yes, you always can, however if you want to be 100% sure you are protected, you should consult an attorney in your local area.