Washington Residential Lease Agreement Template

Key Takeaways

  • Customization and Clarity: The lease agreement is customizable to include specific details such as tenant names, rent specifications, and utility agreements, and is designed for ease of understanding.
  • Legal Specificity: The agreement includes clauses that reflect the legal requirements of Washington State, such as late fees, security deposit handling, fair housing, and domestic abuse protections, with a recommendation to consult an attorney for legal compliance.
  • Local Law Considerations: Local regulations in various Washington counties, like King and Pierce, may necessitate additional provisions in the lease, highlighting the importance of being aware of county-specific laws.
  • Nationwide Standards: General clauses common to lease agreements nationwide cover subletting, property alterations, and legal jurisdiction, ensuring adherence to best practices.
  • Compliance Advice: Landlords are encouraged to seek legal advice to ensure their lease agreements are accurate and compliant with both state and local landlord-tenant laws.
washington state residential lease agreement
Washington Rental Lease Agreement
TurboTenant's Washington lease agreement, crafted by local attorneys and property owners, ensures legal compliance and full protection for landlords.

State-Specific Clauses

Section 2 is strictly crafted to echo the legal landscape of Washington State, but our Advanced Editor allows changes to be made with full disclosure that any edits may take you out of full compliance with state and/or local law and consultation with an attorney is advised. . Among the noteworthy clauses here are:

  • Late Fees (Section 2.1): Rent is due on the first day of each month, and if not received by the 5th day, landlords may levy a $50 late fee—unless the 5th falls on a Sunday or holiday.
  • Security Deposit Provisions (Section 2.4): In Washington, there is no statutory limit on security deposit amounts, which are typically one to two times the monthly rent. Deposits must be kept in a federally insured financial institution, and the landlord retains the interest unless agreed otherwise. The bank name and location must be described in the lease. Security deposits must be returned to tenants within 21 days of regaining possession of the property.
  • Fair Housing (Section 2.11): The agreement adheres to both federal and state civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination in housing.
  • Notice of Domestic Abuse Protections (Section 2.17): Tenants have an eviction defense if they can prove they are victims of domestic abuse and that the eviction is based on related conduct.

Washington Counties

Here is a list of some counties in Washington, highlighting unique clauses that may be present due to local regulations:

King County

  • Seattle’s specific tenant laws regarding rental inspection requirements.
  • Clauses about the Just Cause Eviction Ordinance for lease terminations.

Pierce County

  • Tacoma’s property maintenance codes that may necessitate additional lease provisions.
  • Regulations on rental property licensing and inspections.

Snohomish County

  • Local ordinances in Everett affecting lease terms, especially in the realm of tenant protections.
  • Clauses related to housing quality standards and safety regulations.

Spokane County

  • Spokane’s regulations on rental property registration and safety requirements.
  • Potential requirements for landlord disclosures on crime and drug activity.

Clark County

  • Vancouver may have additional ordinances concerning rental unit habitability and maintenance.
  • Specific clauses for energy efficiency disclosures.

Thurston County

  • Olympia’s local housing codes that could influence lease agreements.
  • Environmental protection clauses affecting rental properties.

Kitsap County

  • Bremerton’s regulations on rental inspections and property upkeep.
  • Clauses tailored to unique environmental conditions and military housing considerations.

Yakima County

  • Local regulations on agricultural workers’ housing and related tenant rights.
  • Clauses addressing rural property standards and access.

Whatcom County

  • Bellingham’s specific tenant protection laws and rental licensing requirements.
  • Ordinances on noise control and property occupancy limits.

Benton County

  • Richland and Kennewick’s safety and health codes impacting lease terms.
  • Regulations on landlord disclosures for properties in flood zones.

Landlords in Washington State should be aware of both state and local laws when drafting lease agreements. For the most accurate and compliant lease agreements, consulting with a legal professional familiar with Washington’s landlord-tenant laws and specific county ordinances is essential.

General Clauses

The final segment includes clauses that are standard for lease agreements across the country, ensuring landlords are following best practices:

  • Subletting (Section 3.1): Subleasing is not permitted without the landlord’s written consent.
  • Alterations and Improvements (Section 3.2): Tenants must get written approval for any property changes and restore the property to its original state upon moving out unless otherwise agreed.
  • Choice of Law (Section 3.11): The lease is governed by Washington law, and there is a mandate to consent to the jurisdiction of the county courts where the property is located.
  • Law Abidance (Section 3.14): Tenants must comply with all laws and ordinances and avoid being disruptive to neighbors, with violations constituting grounds for lease termination.

Customized Lease

At the heart of the agreement lies Section 1, which is entirely customizable to fit the details of your distinct leasing scenario. This includes tenant names, rent specifications, and utility agreements—all inputted during the lease creation process with TurboTenant. The lease is designed for transparency and ease of understanding, with a summary table at the beginning of the document and subsequent details following suit. Notably:

  • Additional Provisions: This subsection allows landlords to embed property-specific rules or necessary local clauses. It is advised that landlords consult with an attorney to review any additional terms to ensure legal compliance.
  • Lost Key Clause: Tenants are responsible for the full cost of rekeying should they fail to return all keys at the end of their tenancy.
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FAQ

Can I include additional terms specific to my property in the lease agreement?

Yes, you can include additional terms through the Additional Provisions section of Section 1. These can encompass property-specific rules or clauses that are necessary due to local regulations. It is recommended to have these provisions reviewed by a legal professional to ensure they are compliant with the law.

What should I do if a tenant does not return their keys?

Tenants who fail to return their keys are responsible for the cost associated with rekeying the property. This cost is outlined in the lease agreement and can be deducted from the security deposit if necessary.

How much can I charge for a late fee in Washington?

A late fee of $50 can be charged if rent is not paid by the 5th day of the month. However, if the 5th is a Sunday or a holiday, the late fee cannot be imposed until the following business day.

Are there any restrictions on the amount I can charge for a security deposit in Washington?

Washington law does not specify a maximum amount for security deposits, but it is typical for deposits to range from one to two times the monthly rent. The lease agreement should clearly state the security deposit amount and the terms for its return.

How quickly must I return the security deposit after a tenant moves out?

Washington state law requires that landlords return the security deposit within 21 days of regaining possession of the property. This must include a detailed statement if there are any deductions for damages or unpaid rent.

TurboTenant’s Washington lease agreement is a vital resource for landlords looking to ensure legal protection and transparency throughout the rental process. With specific sections dedicated to state laws, personalized terms, and general landlord-tenant best practices, this document serves as a solid foundation for successful property management.

Washington Resources

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