Vermont Lease Agreement Template – Forbes Advisor


Published: Nov 3, 2023, 3:59am

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When a landlord agrees to let another person or group use their property, it’s to the benefit of both parties—and sometimes a legal requirement—that they create a lease agreement.

This article will outline the requirements of a valid Vermont rental contract and how it can protect the rights of tenants and landlords. We also provide a free template that you can use as the basis of a Vermont lease. Enter your email address below to get our lease template, tailored to comply with Vermont law.

What Is a Lease Agreement?

A lease agreement is a contract between a landlord—the property owner—and a tenant (or tenants)—the person or people using the property.

The purpose of a lease is to spell out the rights and responsibilities of all parties. These typically include the landlord’s right to collect the agreed-upon rent, for example, and their duties to repair and maintain the property. The tenants also have rights and responsibilities in most rental contracts.

The exact nature of the roles of each party will depend on the nature of the document, Vermont laws and the terms that the landlord and tenant agree to.

When Is a Lease Agreement Used in Vermont?

A lease agreement is often used to formalize a Vermont landlord-tenant relationship and to outline the rights and obligations each party owes to the other.

Even in instances where a rental contract isn’t required to be written out, it’s usually a good idea to have a written lease.

If you do decide to enter a lease without a written rental agreement, you should be aware of potential consequences. Without documentation, it will be difficult to prove when a party fails to comply with the agreement.

Who Typically Creates a Lease Agreement?

The landlord usually takes on the responsibility of writing the residential lease. This makes sense, as one of the critical elements of a written rental contract in Vermont is a description of the property, and tenants may not be familiar enough with the rental property when they begin a new lease.

There is no requirement, however, that the landlord write the lease. Tenants can draft a residential lease themselves. In either case, both parties can negotiate the lease terms before signing, though this is more common in commercial than residential leases.

What Parties Are Involved in a Lease Agreement?

The parties to a lease are:

  • The landlord—or lessor—owns the property. They can be an individual, multiple people or a company.
  • The tenant—or lessee—wants to use the property for the lease term. Just like the landlord, tenants can be people or, usually in commercial leases, companies.

In some instances, the landlord may require a cosigner or guarantor to also be party to the contract. The cosigner agrees to accept responsibility for complying with the lease if the tenant can’t. Usually, this means that the cosigner or guarantor will pay the rent if necessary.

What Should Be Included in a Vermont Lease Agreement?

There are a lot of elements that should be in a lease, but the requirements of a written lease in Vermont are surprisingly minimal:

  • A lease must identify and be signed by all parties.
  • A lease must identify the address of the property being rented.
  • Finally, a lease must identify the amount and frequency of the rent payments.

Just because it only takes a few criteria to form a legal lease doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to write such short and vague agreements, however.

A well-written Vermont lease should include details like the term of the lease, the manner in which the rent is to be paid, the security deposit (if any), how the tenant should contact the landlord, the timing of repairs and requirements for the landlord accessing the property. These are just some items that a lease should include, too.

You can see an example of a well-drafted and inclusive Vermont lease in our free template.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What rights does a tenant have in Vermont?

A lease in Vermont is a contract between the tenant and landlord. Like any contract, both parties can negotiate the terms—at least in theory. In practice, landlords may be unwilling to alter their residential lease.

It doesn’t hurt to ask, however. It’s also important to know that a lease can’t contain terms that are illegal.

Does a lease need to be notarized in Vermont?

A Vermont lease does not need to be notarized to be valid and enforceable. In fact, notarizing a lease is extremely rare—increasingly so as more and more residential leases are e-signed.

How much can a landlord increase the rent in Vermont?

There are no caps on how much a landlord can increase the rent in most states. In Vermont, there are no rent controls.

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Adam Ramirez has been writing and editing about the law and legal issues for more than 20 years. After earning a law degree from the University of Arizona, he clerked for two years for a U.S. District Court judge. He researched and wrote legal precedent in published opinions on behalf of the Court. He previously was an editor, columnist and journalist at the Miami Herald, The Dallas Morning News, The Oregonian, Golf Digest, FindLaw.com and other media outlets.

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