The Maine Standard One (1) Year Lease Agreement is designed to lease residential property to a prospective tenant for one year with either the option to renew or not to renew. It’s important to lay out and understand every provision within the lease since it will last for one year. You would not want to sign something and have to live with a mistake for one year just because you did do your due diligence.
The basic component this agreement should include are the names of the landlord and tenant(s), address of the property, length of the agreement (and if it has an option to renew clause), rent amount, and a security deposit. Be aware that if this agreement does not have a “lease term” (which in this case is 1 year), then you will have a rental agreement, not a lease.
If you wish to create your own lease, the state of Maine Attorney General’s Office has put together a reference guide on how to do so. See Attorney General’s Model Landlord-Tenant Lease.
- Treatment of bedbugs – If the tenant suspects there is a bug infestation and gives oral or written notice to the landlord, the landlord must inspect within 5 days and treat the problem within 10 days if there are bugs found.
- Heat and utilities in common areas – A landlord can not solely charge a tenant in a multi-family unit for expenses in the common areas unless there is an exchange in a reduction in rent.
- Radon testing – As of March 1, 2014, landlords should have the air tested in their buildings every 10 years, when requested by a tenant. Within 30 days of receiving results of radon, landlords must give the results in a written notice to the tenants. New tenants signing a lease should also be given a copy.
- Smoking policy – Within the lease and before it’s signed, a landlord must be clear as to whether or not smoking is allowed, prohibited, or limited to certain areas.