If you're a landlord in North Carolina, you understand the benefits of having a rental contract. This sets the foundation for both you and the tenant and protects your best interest. Therefore, you should use it to tell tenants what they should know before moving in.

Generally, this includes landlord-tenant laws and information about the payment schedule, monthly rent amount, and security deposit information. Continue reading to see everything you should provide and tips about using property management software to make your life easier.

North Carolina Lease

A lease agreement in North Carolina is a legally binding contract signed by the landlord and tenant or business entity for commercial leases.

It states the rules associated with living or working in the unit, such as rent payments, security deposits, recurring fees, and more. Overall, the agreement should comply with the laws of the state, which we cover on this page.


A sublease agreement and North Carolina roommate agreement are similar to the standard residential lease in that they give the rules each party must adhere to for living on the property. Generally, subleases must be agreed upon by the landlord, tenant, and subletter, and the same applies for roommates.

What to Include

Your North Carolina rental agreement should include these things:

Rent Payments

The North Carolina rental agreement should include the due date and amount of the rental payment, including any late fees. It must also list the rent grace period, which is five days after the date before landlords can charge anything.

Security Deposit

The security deposit can be two months' rent for a standard residential lease agreement. Generally, month-to-month tenancies see one and one-half months' rent as the security deposits maximum.

Week-to-week leases are different, and landlords can't request more than two weeks' rent for the security deposit.

Also, the landlord is required to keep the deposit in a separate bank account at a financial institution or a state-licensed insurance company.

Landlord Right to Entry for Repairs

There's no statute for general or emergency access, so landlords aren't required to add that to the rental agreement.

Lease Termination and Evictions

There are many reasons to evict someone from a rental property. The first step is to provide notice to quit. This tells the tenant that they're in danger of eviction and must provide a reason, such as:

  • Failure to pay the rent
  • Conducting illegal activity
  • Violating the agreement

North Carolina does allow verbal eviction notices for certain issues.

Mandatory Disclosure

The required disclosures for a North Carolina lease agreement are found below:

  • Late Fees - North Carolina law requires you to outline late fees in the lease before they are enforceable, including the date it applies and the amount. The most you can charge is fifteen dollars for month-to-month leases and monthly payments. Generally, for weekly payments, the fee can't be higher than $4 or five percent of the weeks' rent.
  • Water Contamination Disclosure - This is applicable for any unit where the tenant must pay water and sewer charges to the landlord. You must provide a notice that shows contaminant levels that exceed state guidelines.
  • Lead-based Paint - Federal law requires that homes built before 1978 disclose the risk associated with lead paint. Landlords must fill out a disclosure form and attach it to the agreement and provide them with EPA-approved pamphlets about the dangers.

Optional disclosures can include:

  • Landlord's name and address
  • Move-in checklist
  • Shared utilities arrangements
  • Returned check fees
  • Bed bug disclosure
  • Asbestos disclosure
  • Mold disclosure


What's your lease signing process like?

With DoorLoop, eSignatures can get done in a few seconds, and you can also create reusable lease templates that are autofilled with each tenant's information. That means the entire lease setup and signing process takes just a couple of clicks!

Lease signing can make or break a tenant's first impression of life at your property, so it's super important to make the process super smooth and user-friendly. DoorLoop does that and more, making tenant attraction easy from the very beginning.

By integrating with top listing sites like Zillow, Trulia, Hotpads,, and more, DoorLoop lets you attract tenants on autopilot. You can also make sure you're bringing in the most reliable tenants by screening your prospects in seconds through an integration with TransUnion.

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

Try DoorLoop

Most people find it hard to create and fill out lease agreements initially because it's up to them to ensure that it's all correct. Property management software can be beneficial in this case.

Build Your Own

DoorLoop helps you create a North Carolina rental application or lease agreement in seconds, customizing it to your needs and auto-filling everything. Plus, you get access to tenant screening so that you know the right tenants are available. This might include a credit history and other pertinent background checks.

You can use a free form to get everything started without the assistance (and added cost) of involving licensed attorneys. Just request a demo for DoorLoop today to get started.


How long is a North Carolina lease agreement?

North Carolina landlords can have a maximum lease term of one year, though they can be shorter or longer if they're presented in writing.

Is a lease binding in the state?

Yes, a North Carolina rental lease is a legal document in North Carolina. You don't require a signature for one or both people to make it enforceable.

Can leases automatically renew in the state?

Yes, leases can automatically renew in the state. Usually, the agreement contains a renewal provision, or it becomes a month-to-month tenancy if no one gives notice to end it.

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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!