Many a times we just sign the rental agreement without giving it much thought and fail to read through the conditions carefully. This can be a problem when it comes to rental increases or other conditions that the owners may have included.
Here are some things that you can keep in mind while signing the agreement for your student accommodation:
1) Is the landlord the owner?
Before you sign on the dotted line, ensure that the person you are dealing with is the actual owner of the property. Many a times, NRIs (Non Resident Indian) or owners who don’t want to handle the hassle of several properties, hand over their properties to caretakers, who lease it. Verify the title documents such as sale deed, besides obtaining a NOC from the housing society where you plan to lease the property. In case, the property is mortgaged, the original sale deed would be in the custody of the bank.
2) What does the rent agreement contain?
Apart from the terms and conditions under which the property is given on rent, a rent agreement specifies the rent value and the tenure for which the agreement is made, along with the security amount that needs to be deposited to the landlord. It should also mention by which date the rent should be paid and the fine should also be defined as well. Additional monthly charges, which includes the society maintenance charges and club fees, should be mentioned as well. The tenure of a rent agreement is usually 11 months unless otherwise specified in the contract. If for more than a year, it becomes mandatory for the owner to get the document registered.
3) What to check before signing?
It is important that you make sure all the agreed-upon conditions are present in the document before signing the agreement for your student accommodation. It's important for you to see if there is a rent escalation clause in the lease agreement or not. As it is the best tool employed by the landlord to randomly increase the rent, the best way is to ensure that it specifies by how much and when the rent will be increased to ensure clarity and understanding with the owner on the matter.
4) What about future sale?
Make sure that the agreement has a clause on the sale of the house. Even if your landlord has no plans to sell his house, you should press upon him to add the clause stating how many months you will get to search for another accommodation in case he plans to sell the property as a precaution as well.
5) Check the facilities and appliances?
See that the appliances and connections are in proper working condition. Any minor repair work is the responsibility of the tenant. However, if the property is damaged because of negligence on your part, the landlord can rightfully use the security money deposited with him for carrying out the necessary renovation. Make sure that the documents that prove all previous power, water and gas bills have been cleared to ensure there are no previous dues by previous tenants.
It is always a better idea to take well informed decisions. Keep in check all these aspects before you sign a rent agreement. Reading the documents and getting all your queries answered is extremely essential so that you dont end up regretting the choice. Staying away from home is a big change and choosing your new place should be a well rounded decision. Only after resolving all doubts in your mind regarding the rent agreement and after thoroughly checking the apartment for any kind of damages should you go forward with it. “A stitch in time saves nine”!
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