A month-to-month rental agreement is a recurring rental contract that is signed when a tenant rents a dwelling place for an indefinite period and pays a monthly rent to the house owner. It is also called a short-term lease, which lasts a month and then automatically renews until either the landlord or the tenant wants to suspend it.
An indefinite lease is an agreement between the lessor (an individual who owns a property) and the lessee (an individual who has entered into a lease with any property owner) without specifying its validity period. The main thing is that the contract specifies the method of termination of the contract and the notice period.
What is a Month-to-month Rental Agreement?
A month-to-month rental agreement is a short-term lease that renews or automatically resumes every month until one of the parties provides a non-renewal notice.
The tenant gains access to the property and uses it in any way specified in the agreement. The landlord receives rental payment for a specified period (a month), and their ownership rights are returned at the end of the rent.
For month-to-month rental agreements, both parties must give at least 30-days written notice to terminate the tenancy unless otherwise defined in the rental agreement. In some states, local laws may govern how many notices must be made when it comes to month-to-month rental agreements.
When You May Need a Month-to-month Rental Agreement
Depending on the property’s location, the landlord may consider a month-to-month rental for various purposes. Month-to-month rentals in tourist locations are very common. For a more comfortable living experience, they rent a dwelling place for a short period. This type of rental is also suitable for students who do not want to live in dormitories. They, therefore, rent houses, apartments, or rooms every month. Thus, month-to-month rent is great for people who cannot or do not want to rent a place for a long-term period for various reasons. It is important to remember that there is a rent surcharge from month to month (its cost may differ depending on the time of the year).
Often, the parties enter into a month-to-month rental agreement upon the expiration of the long-term lease. There are two options here: either the tenant does not have an opportunity to move out in time, or they do not know for sure how long they will need to stay in this residence (they are no longer considering a long-term lease).
Nevertheless, with this option, a month-to-month rental agreement has its specific pros and cons that should be considered before choosing this type of rental agreement whether you are a landlord or a tenant.
Pros and Cons of Using a Month-to-month Rental Agreement
Whether a month-to-month rent is profitable or not partly depends on the ability of the tenant or landlord to respond quickly to changing circumstances. However, not everything is as complicated as it might seem. The main thing is to take into account some factors.
1. Control over the end date of the agreement
Tenants are not tied to a long-term lease agreement and can withdraw from the month-to-month rental agreement by sending notice no later than 30 days in advance. Landlords can terminate the arrangement in the same way.
2. Great for travelers
If you are a tenant moving to a new city (or just visiting) and are unfamiliar with the local neighborhoods, this is a great way to live in any area you like without any commitment. If you are a landowner, it will not be a problem to find a lessee. Many travelers consider the option of a month-to-month rental as the main one. Moreover, in different seasons, you can set specific rental payments.
3. Rent payments change
Landlords can change the rent every month if they wish, and tenants can quickly take advantage of a better offer elsewhere.
1. Less predictable income and rent changes
Tenants usually pay higher rents for month-to-month rentals than long-term ones due to the possibility of a sudden move-out. Landlords holding a month-to-month rental agreement can suffer from unpredictable income.
Tenants cannot be sure that they will be renting out for more than one month and, therefore, should always have a quick move-out plan. Landlords cannot be sure of a constant turnover of tenants who want to live in an unstable monthly lease.
3. Payments increase
As mentioned above, since tenants do not make long-term commitments, the monthly rent may increase over a certain period.
What are the Main Components of a Month-to-month Rental Agreement?
As mentioned earlier, it is necessary to write a 30-days notice to terminate the rental agreement with other essential paperwork. In such notice of eviction, you will need to indicate your personal official information, date, and address of the leased property specified in the agreement. It is also important to remember that any 30-days notice will need to designate its mention in the month-to-month rental agreement.
In addition to personal information and the date the notification was created, you must also indicate the date and time during which the tenants will have to leave the property. Without the specified time limits, lessees are entitled to stay until midnight of that day.
How a Month-to-month Rental Agreement Works
Here is a simple guide on how to draw up a month-to-month rental agreement:
- Name the parties
Start by writing the tenant’s and landlord’s full legal names.
- Describe the property
Indicate the current information about leasing property (full address).
- Define the rent payment
Here, you must designate the fixed rental payment per month.
- Indicate the guarantor’s information
If the tenant’s credit history is somewhat questionable or if they do not meet all the terms of the month-to-month rental agreement, you can involve a third party who will be responsible for paying for the rented accommodation along with the tenant.
- Specify the security deposit
In this part of the month-to-month rental agreement, please indicate the exact amount of the security deposit (in most states, this amount is equal to the monthly rental payment).
- Write about 30-days notice
Describe the process for sending an eviction notice and the time it takes to generate it. Because it is a month-to-month rental agreement, there is no separate section to indicate the exact date of leasing the property. Please note that each state has different security deposit amounts and eviction notices terms.