A Washington lease agreement is a legally binding document that authorizes a tenant to occupy residential or commercial real estate. The majority of residential leases will be fixed-term contracts that cannot be modified until the expiration of the rental term. For flexible rental arrangements, the landlord can create a month-to-month lease that can be freely terminated or altered by providing sufficient notice.
Rental Application – Completed by lease applicants to submit their personal information to landlords and authorize a background check.
Commercial Lease Agreement – Permits a tenant to occupy a commercial space for the purpose of operating a business. The lease will run as a fixed-term contract that typically lasts three (3) to five (5) years.
Rent-to-Own Agreement (Lease Option) – Combines a standard lease with a real estate purchase agreement. The tenant has the option of purchasing the property if certain conditions and contingencies are met.
Month-to-Month Lease Agreement – A short-term rental contract that guarantees tenancy in a residential dwelling for one (1) month. The contract will renew upon the start of each subsequent month unless the parties decide to terminate the contract.
Roommate Agreement – Defines the rental conditions for individuals occupying a shared residential property.
Standard (1-year) Lease Agreement – Sets forth the rights and responsibilities of both a landlord and tenant for a fixed-term residential tenancy.
Sublease Agreement – Leaseholders may use this agreement to rent all or a portion of their rental property to another party for a temporary period.
Landlords must disclose fire safety and protection information to all tenants upon entering into a rental agreement. The written disclosure must state that the dwelling is equipped with proper smoke detection devices and it must describe the penalties for failing to maintain such devices. Additional fire information such as an evacuation plan and smoking policies must be provided to tenants of multi-family residential dwellings.
Tenants must be informed of the name and address of the landlord. If the landlord does not reside in Washington, the tenant must also be given the name and address of the person authorized to act on the landlord’s behalf. This information may either be included in the written lease or posted in a conspicuous location on the premises.
A form used to disclose the use of lead-based paint on the rental premises (mandatory if the property was constructed before 1978).
Upon signing a lease or rental agreement, the landlord must provide the tenant with a document that describes the dangers of mold and how mold growth can be controlled.
If a security deposit is collected from a tenant, the landlord must provide the individual with a written checklist or statement describing the condition of the leased premises.
- RCW Title 59 – Landlord and Tenant
- Your Rights as a Tenant in Washington State
- Renting in Seattle – Renter’s Handbook
- Landlord/Tenant Rights
General Access (§ 59.18.150(6)) – Two (2) days’ notice is required for general access. If the landlord wishes to show the property to prospective tenants or purchasers, only one (1) day’s notice is necessary.
Emergency Access (§ 59.18.150(5)) – The landlord may enter without notice in the case of an emergency or abandonment.
Grace Period – No statute.
Maximum Fees ($) – No statute.
Rent Increase Notice (§ 59.18.140(3)) – Sixty (60) days’ notice must be given for rent increases, and the increase may not become effective until the completion of the rental agreement. In the case of a government-subsidized tenancy, landlords must provide at least thirty (30) days’ notice, and the increase may not become effective until the end of the rental term unless otherwise agreed upon by the parties.
Maximum Amount ($) – No statute.
Returning to Tenant (§ 59.18.280(1)) – The deposit must be returned within twenty-one (21) days after the termination of the tenancy or abandonment of the premises by the tenant.
Interest Required? (§ 59.18.270) – The landlord is entitled to any interest earned from the deposit unless otherwise agreed upon in writing.
Separate Bank Account? (§ 59.18.270) – Security deposits must be held in a trust account that is maintained by the landlord for the sole purpose of holding security deposits.