Understanding rental property lease jargon

Whether you’re a Mount Isa rental property landlord or tenant, it’s important to understand the terms and conditions of your lease agreement. After all, it’s a legal document. Unfortunately, that means it will also contain legal jargon. Here’s our layman’s guide to understanding it.

The most common rental property lease jargon

  • Bond: an upfront lump sum paid by tenants at the start of a lease agreement. It’s held as security to protect the landlord against any property damage caused by tenants, or if the lease agreement is otherwise breached (for example, by the tenant not paying the rent). This amount is fully refundable at the end of the lease term if there have been no issues. If there are issues, it may only be partially refundable or not refundable at all.
  • Co-tenant: all tenants that are listed on a property lease agreement.
  • Emergency repair: a serious property problem that needs to be fixed urgently. It’s the opposite of a routine repair.
  • Fair wear and tear: this is normal wear and tear on a property during the term of the lease agreement. Tenants are not responsible for fair wear and tear costs, but they are responsible for any damage.
  • Fixed term agreement: a lease agreement with a start and end date (unlike a periodic agreement).
  • Fixture: items that are attached to the property that can’t be easily removed.
  • Inclusions: property items that tenants can use (e.g. a dishwasher or furniture that may be provided with a rental property).: property items that tenants can use (e.g. a dishwasher or furniture that may be provided with a rental property).
  • Landlord: the rental property owner.
  • Lessee: another name for the tenant.
  • Lessor: another name for the landlord or rental property owner.
  • Lease: the agreement between the rental property owner and the tenant/s.
  • Lease break: ending a fixed term agreement early. Either the landlord or tenant may wish to do this, but each party has legal rights to protect or compensate them in this situation.
  • Notice to remedy breach: a written notice to remedy an issue associated with the rental property or the associated agreement.
  • Parties to the agreement: every person listed on the rental property agreement.
  • Periodic agreement: a rental property agreement that extends for an unspecified time (unlike a fixed term agreement).
  • Property owner: Another name for the landlord or lessor.
  • Property manager: a person or real estate agency who is responsible for professionally managing the property on behalf of the landlord.
  • Rent: the regular amount that tenants are required to pay under the terms and conditions of their lease agreement.
  • Residential Tenancies Authority (RTA): the government body responsible for administering Queensland rental property law.
  • Routine repair: a routine but not urgent property problem that needs to be fixed in a timely manner. It’s the opposite of an emergency repair.
  • Tenancy agreement: another name for the rental lease agreement for the property.
  • Tenant/s: the person or people renting the property and listed on the lease agreement.
  • The Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act (2008): the law that covers rental properties in Queensland.

The bottom line

Whether you’re a Mt Isa landlord or a tenant, it’s important to understand rental property lease jargon. When you do, it helps you both to have a smooth relationship with no surprises. Landlords who use the services of an experienced property manager to help them prepare their lease agreements can save time, avoid confusion and attract high quality, long-term tenants.

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Jays Real Estate has been Mount Isa’s premier residential and commercial real estate agency since 1981.

If you’re thinking about renting/leasing, selling or buying any Mt Isa property, or you need your investment property managed, then contact our team today for an obligation-free chat!

We’d be happy to provide you with advice and to answer any questions you have.