Condo Media - June 2019 - 46

LEASING

Dance

LEASING POLICY
CONSIDERATIONS
The existence of a leasing policy is essential to the security and safety of the
other unit owners and the condominium.
In today's world, you have short-term
rentals such as Airbnb, HomeAway, and
other services that provide transient
short-term rentals. If your leasing policy
fails to restrict and/or regulate such
short-term rentals, your association
could be facing issues with multiple tenants moving in and out of the complex
on a transient basis. This leads to discord
between unit owners who have a primary
residency on site and those who lease
their unit to residential tenants.
Leasing considerations-especially
in long established condominium
trusts-should be reviewed by the
trustees. The trustees should adapt
their leasing policy to match today's
residential rental reality. Each condominium trust is governed by its own set
of rules established in its organization
documents, such as the Master Deed,
Declaration of Trust, Bylaws, and Rules
and Regulations.
A leasing policy should be clear and
concise. It should set out the procedure
for application by the unit owner who
seeks to lease a unit, the review of the
application by the trustees, and the
requirements and responsibilities
of all parties.
The following is a basic-but
not a comprehensive-summary of
what a reasonable leasing policy
should include.

1

Trustee Approval of
Lease Must Be Required

● Any unit owner who intends to lease a
unit should be required first to send a
written request to the condominium's
management company. Each written
request to lease a unit should include
a copy of the proposed lease agreement and all related documents.
● Trustees should have a reasonable
time to review the application, i.e.
seven to 10 business days.

46

CONDOMEDIA June 2019

● All leases should be subject to the approval of the trustees. If not approved,
the lease should be null and void.
If disapproved, execution of the lease
by the unit owner would be a violation of the condominium association
bylaws, and could result in the unit
owner being subject to a fine, if allowed by the governing documents
of the condominium.
● Trustees should have a fully
executed copy of the lease on
file for the leased unit.
● It must be clear that leasing a unit is
the responsibility of the unit owner.
It should be clear that each unit owner is solely responsible for checking
the credentials of his or her prospective tenants and is legally responsible
for the acts, omissions, and negligence
of his or her tenants and for events or
incidents that may occur.

2

Requirements
of Written Lease

● All leases should be required to be
in written form.
● The description of the leased premises
should make clear that the lease is for
the entire unit. Moreover, to avoid
overburdening the common areas
(e.g. pools), unit owners no longer in
residence should not be able to use
common areas for their own benefit
during any approved lease term. The
unit owners' right to access the common areas will be transferred to the
tenant for the duration of the lease.
● All leases should be for a term of not
less than 12 months; transient or
short-term rentals of any kind, such
as hotel, motel, rooming house, vacation rental and/or Airbnb, VRBO,
HomeAway, or similar short-term
rentals should be prohibited. Unit
owners should be prohibited from
advertising their units for short-term
or vacation use, and further prohibited
from listing their units with a company

in the business of acquiring tenants for
such short-term use. This is important
because it is the only way the trustees
can prevent transient occupants.
● It should be clear that every lease is
subject in every respect to the Master
Deed, the Declaration of Trust, the
Bylaws and the Rules and Regulations.
Any amendments to these governance
documents will also amend the terms
of the lease even if that lease was executed before the amendment. To enforce this, each lease that is approved
by the trustees should be required to
contain a statement to this effect.
● Unit owners should be required to
notify the trustees when a lease is
terminated and/or the property is
vacant for any reason.

3

General Requirements
Concerning Tenants,
Fees and Fines,
and Responsibilities
of Unit Owner

● The trustees or their management
company should have model rental
forms in place. These should include
a Unit Owner Agreement/Application that the unit owner files when
requesting approval of a lease,
and in which the unit owner agrees
to be bound by the leasing policy.
A reasonable fee for processing could
be considered as well. Additionally,
there should be a Tenant Agreement
in which the tenant also acknowledges that they shall be subject to the
leasing policy. Finally, there should
be a Unit Owner and Tenant Information sheet with contact information for all parties to enable proper
and efficient communication.
● A leasing policy should be clear that it
is the responsibility of the unit owner
to inform tenants and other third
parties of all rules and regulations.
Moreover, the Tenant Agreement
discussed above should make it clear



Condo Media - June 2019

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