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Read further to learn more about month-to-month residential lease agreements in Hawaii, such as what disclosures are required and what else should be included.
What is a Month-to-Month Residential Lease Agreement?
The month-to-month residential lease is an agreement between a landlord and a tenant for one month of residency. This type of lease is automatically renewed each month unless terminated by the landlord or tenant in accordance with state regulations. While it is not legally advised, if there is no verbal or written residential lease agreement, it is implied to operate on a month-to-month basis.
A month-to-month rental lease agreement is an option that is often used when an individual is looking for a new place to live without the obligation of staying in the unit for a year or two. This is an option that is used when someone is planning on moving their family into a house or they are looking for a place to live while they are working at a specific job location. When they are ready to leave, they will be able to move quickly without any ties to their current living situation. They can simply pay the rent each month, and if there are no issues with the agreement, it will typically be set to renew each month.
As long as the rent is paid on time and there are no disturbances from the tenant, the landlord will most likely allow for the rental agreement to continue. The agreement can be ended when the landlord is ready for a new tenant, but they will need to give the tenant at least a 45-day notice before they can legally ask them to leave the premises.
This is also a great arrangement for the tenant because they will have the freedom to leave the property without being stuck in the agreement for a year or more. If the tenant wishes to end the arrangement, they must provide the landlord with a notice of 28 days. This different amount of time is uncommon for some states, but according to Hawaii statute § 521-71, it provides ample time for the tenant to find a new place to live and the landlord to find a new tenant.
Writing a Hawaii Month-to-Month Lease Agreement
As with a traditional residential lease agreement, a month-to-month agreement is going to need to cover some of the basics that should be covered in any rental agreement. Some of the sections that will need to be placed in this document include:
Parties Involved and Personal Information
The document should begin with the names of the parties that are entering into the agreement. This will include the name of the landlord as well as the management company that will be taking care of the property. An address and a phone number for both should also be included so that they can easily be reached when the need arises. In addition, the name of the tenant will need to be placed in this section. If there is more than one tenant, their names should also be listed. Don’t forget a space for the current address and the phone number where the tenant can be reached.
Underneath the names of the parties involved, information about the unit that is being rented should be listed. This will include the full street address, any apartment number, the county, and the city. If the tenant is provided with additional storage space, it should be mentioned here as well. This will help to give the tenant a sense of what is available to them on the property before committing to an agreement.
The next section that will need to be addressed in this document is the terms of the lease. The date that the agreement is set to begin will need to be at the top of this section as well as the date that the month-to-month lease officially ends. In most of these leases, the arrangement will automatically renew when it expires, but if the lease does not automatically renew, the steps that the tenant will need to take to make sure that they can continue living in the unit must be stated. Typically, if the tenant wishes to end the agreement, they will need to provide a 28-day notice.
This section will also need to cover the amount of money that the tenant will need to pay for rent each month. Sometimes the rent of a month-to-month lease is a bit higher than an annual lease amount, but there is also more freedom in what is allowed when it comes time to vacate. In addition, because there is not an agreement that is set in stone for the year, the landlord can even increase the rent for the unit with just a little bit of notice. If there is a fee for paying the rent late, then it is important that it’s written here as well so that there is no confusion about what is owed. If the check is returned, there is likely to be a fee that the tenant has to pay as well.
In a month-to-month rental agreement, the amount that is required for the security deposit in Hawaii cannot be more than a month’s rent. This will be used if there are any damages to the property when it is vacated, but if everything is in good condition, the security deposit should be returned to the tenant within 14 days.
Additional Tenant Expectations
With a month-to-month lease, the tenant is going to expect some of the same allowances as an individual with a yearly lease. Some of these things include:
- Maintenance and repairs to be taken care of: When you rent property, the majority of the repairs and the maintenance will be done by the landlord, but if this is not the case or there is a certain way that the tenant needs to go about getting service done in the unit, it needs to be included in this section. Sometimes these concerns can be an emergency that will cause more issues when they are left unattended. Anything that deals with a water leak, electricity, or heating will need to be taken care of immediately. Make sure to provide an emergency number if there is one for the tenant to use.
- Parking: When you live in Hawaii, most of the residents will have their own vehicle to drive wherever they need to go. A tenant on this property will also need to have a place to park when they return after a long day at the job. Some landlords will have designated parking locations for each tenant who lives in a unit on the property, while others may simply have a lot for all of the residents to park in.
- Quiet time: When a tenant lives in a community, they are likely to expect some noise from the surrounding neighbors, but when the noise prevents them from going to bed at a reasonable time, it could be problematic. This is why some landlords will set a quiet time for the neighborhood so that loud, disruptive noises do not happen after 10 pm.
- Pets: As long as the landlord and the tenant discuss the number of pets and their breeds before they move in, the pet will be permitted to stay for the term of the lease. In the state of Hawaii, many properties will allow pets, but if there is a rule against specific breeds or pets in general, it will need to be listed on the agreement so that the tenant can decide if it is a good option for them to choose as a home.
Some of the other things that will need to be addressed with any new tenant include:
- Locks: In the state of Hawaii, most of the doors will only have a single lock on them. To help tenants feel safer when they move into a new neighborhood, many will opt to install a new lock on the door for more security. Some landlords prefer that these locks are not added, but it is ideal to check with them to make sure that it is something that is permitted. Once the lock is changed, it’s common for the tenant to provide the landlord with a key to the new lock so that they can have access if they require it.
- Balconies: If there are balconies on the property, they are most likely connected to the individual unit, but if they are presented as a shared space on the property, it’s important that the time that the balcony can be used by residents is listed. Also, most landlords do not allow grilling on the balconies of their property, so it will also need to be addressed in this section.
- Grilling: Grilling is something that neighbors often enjoy doing together, but grilling may not be permitted on all premises. If grilling is not permitted, or it is only allowed in designated locations, the specific rules for grilling should be listed here.
- Bicycles: Having a bicycle in your home can take up a lot of space, but some communities will have a storage space where the bikes can be kept. A lock will still be required to secure a bike, but this option will keep it from cluttering small spaces.
The final part of the month-to-month residential agreement is the signature of the landlord and the tenant. There will also be a location where both parties can print their name as well as a place to signify the date when the agreement was signed.