Connecticut Residential Lease Agreement

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The Connecticut residential lease agreement (“rental agreement”) is a written document outlining the terms and conditions between a landlord and tenant to rent real property for a fee. Once endorsed by the landlord and the tenant, the agreement becomes legally binding.

Connecticut Lease Disclosures & Addendums

The following disclosures or addendums are either required for some or all residential lease agreements in Connecticut.

There are also a number of optional disclosures and addendums that help reduce future conflicts and/or legal liability in Connecticut.

Landlord’s Name & Address

Applicable to all rental units in Connecticut.

So that future legal notices and demands sent by the tenant can be properly delivered to the landlord, the name and address of either the landlord or the person authorized to act on the landlord’s behalf must be disclosed up-front (commonly done so in the lease agreement) .

Common Interest Community Notice

Applicable to all rental units located in a common interest community.

If a rental property is located in a common interest community (such as a rental where the tenant pays fees for amenities), this must be disclosed in the lease agreement .

The following notice is an example of sufficient disclosure:

NOTICE OF COMMON INTEREST COMMUNITY. This property is located in a common interest community, which means that Tenant may be subjected to fees associated with the support of common interests such as amenities.

Operative Fire Sprinkler System Notice

Applicable to all rental units.

All rental agreements in Connecticut must include a notice (written in 12-point and uniform font) about whether or not the property has a functioning operative fire sprinkler system. If there is a system in place, the lease must include the maintenance and repair history .

The following is an example of a disclosure to include:

FIRE SPRINKLER SYSTEM. This rental property or dwelling unit is:
[ ] Equipped with a functioning fire sprinkler system
[ ] NOT equipped with a functioning fire sprinkler system

For functioning systems, the maintenance history is as follows:
_________
_________
________

Bed Bug Disclosure

Applicable to all units.

Landlords may not offer a unit for rent that is suspected of or currently infested with bedbugs. If there is an adjacent or contiguous property that is infested, the landlord must provide notice of the infestation. If asked, the landlord must also disclose the last date of inspection for bed bugs in the prospective or adjacent rental units .

An example of a bed bug addendum or section would be:

BED BUGS. At the time of presenting this agreement, Landlord certifies:

[ ] There is no known current infestation or history of bed bugs in this property.
[ ] There is no known current infestation, but there is a history of infestation in this property.
[ ] There is no known current infestation, but there is a nearby infestation or history of infestations which may place the property at risk.

See attached addendum for more information.
Addendum

Lead Based Paint Disclosure

Applicable to any rental units built prior to 1978.

It is a federal law in the United States that any home built prior to 1978 must disclose the risks posed by lead-based paints. This law requires landlords in Connecticut to:

  • Fill out and attach this lead based paint disclosure form to the lease agreement.
  • Provide the tenant with an EPA-approved pamphlet about the dangers of lead-based paint.
  • Provide additional records or reports about the presence or hazards of any known lead based paint in the unit. For multi-unit buildings with common areas, this includes information from building-wide evaluations.

Optional Disclosures & Addendums (Recommended)

The following lease agreement disclosures and addendums are not required by Connecticut law in residential lease agreements, but either help reduce future conflicts with tenants or reduce legal liability for landlords.

  • Medical Marijuana Use – it is recommended to state where medical marijuana use is and isn’t allowed on the property so that expectations are clear. Connecticut law allows landlords to restrict marijuana usage to non-smoking methods only or control where users can smoke so as to not interfere with other tenants.
  • Move-in Checklist – it is recommended to provide an itemized list of damages to the property before move-in to make sure tenants are responsible for any serious damages that occur during the lease term. This can be attached to the lease agreement or signed as a separate document.
  • Late and Returned Check Fees – it is recommended that landlords disclose in the lease any late fees or returned (bounced) check fees that they intend to charge. Connecticut does not limit how high these fees can be, but they should be considered reasonable (often no more than 10% of rent) and reflect the actual expenses incurred by the landlord as a result of a late payment. They may also only be charged after a 9-day grace period .
  • Shared Utilities Arrangements – for rental units with shared utilities, it is recommended to disclose the specifics of how they are shared, and how each party’s bill is calculated, so that tenants have a reasonable expectation of what they owe each month.
  • Asbestos Disclosure – for rental units in buildings built prior to 1981 (which are considered at-risk for asbestos), it is recommended to establish an understanding of any prior knowledge on the existence of asbestos on the property.
  • Mold Disclosure – it is recommended to disclose the current mold status of a property in the lease to protect against future liability of mold damages due to tenant negligence during the lease term.