Columbus Residential Lease Agreement

Last Updated: September 25, 2023 by Cameron Smith

Columbus 1 on

A residential lease agreement in Columbus is a binding document between a landlord and a tenant. This agreement outlines the terms and conditions surrounding the use of a rental property in exchange for payment.

Residential Lease Agreement Requirements in Columbus

Columbus currently has no city-specific residential lease agreement requirements or disclosures. As such, landlords and tenants in Columbus follow Ohio requirements for lease agreements.

Landlord-Tenant Rights and Regulations in Columbus

When it comes to landlord-tenant rights, Columbus has a few local laws that landlords should be aware of. The Housing for All legislative package that was passed in March of 2021 contains three ordinances. The city also passed their own landlord retaliation law in 2018.

Source of Income Discrimination

The City of Columbus prohibits discrimination based on one’s source of income. Under this ordinance, it is illegal for a landlord to refuse to rent or sell property to a prospective tenant due to their source of income.

Renter’s Choice

If a landlord requires a tenant to pay a security deposit, they must provide the tenant with two alternatives to paying it in full. This includes payment over a series of either three monthly installments or six monthly installments.

Rent Receipt

Landlords must provide tenants with a written receipt upon payment of their security deposit or rent. This does not apply to electronic payments where the tenant is able to obtain an automatic receipt.

Landlord Retaliation

While Ohio currently has landlord retaliation laws in place, Columbus passed a retaliatory action law of their own in 2018. Similar to the state-level statute, this law makes it illegal for a landlord to retaliate against a tenant for making a good-faith complaint or joining with other tenants to negotiate with the landlord.

Optional Lease Agreement Disclosures and Addendums in Columbus

While not mandatory, landlords can add specific disclosures and addendums to their leases. This helps outline the responsibilities of the tenant and can prevent future liability issues.

Medical Marijuana Use Disclosure

Medical marijuana use is legal in Columbus—which is why it’s important to disclose if it will be permitted on the property. Ohio law allows landlords to restrict marijuana usage to non-smoking methods only. Clarify if there are designated smoking areas on the premises.

Pet Disclosure

Since Columbus is ranked as one of the most pet-friendly cities in Ohio, landlords may want to address the building’s pet policies. This disclosure should include whether or not pets are allowed on the property, the tenant’s responsibility to cover any pet-related damages, and any additional pet fees or restrictions.

Asbestos Disclosure

Ohio ranks as the 6th-highest state for asbestos-related deaths. This is why landlords should include a disclosure stating if asbestos is present on the property. If asbestos is present, tenants should take precautions to minimize the chance of disturbing the fibers.

Summary of Required Lease Disclosures for the State of Ohio

  • Landlord’s Name and Address – The landlord must include their name and mailing address on the lease. This informs tenants of where to send any future legal notices or demands.
  • Lead-Based Paint – Federal law states that any home built before 1978 must disclose the risks associated with lead-based paint.