Maine Rental Agreement

Last Updated: October 31, 2023 by Roberto Valenzuela

A Maine rental agreement is a legal contract between a landlord overseeing a rental property and a tenant who wishes to use it. Maine landlord-tenant law governs these agreements; rental terms must be within the limits allowed by law.

Maine Rental Agreement Types

19 pages
Residential Lease Agreement

A Maine residential lease agreement (“rental agreement”) is a legal contract for a tenant to rent a residential property from a landlord, subject to terms and conditions agreed by all parties.

12 pages
Month-to-Month Rental Agreement

A Maine month-to-month lease agreement is a contract (not necessarily written) where a tenant rents property from a landlord. The full rental term is one month, renewable on a month-to-month basis.

3 pages
Rental Application Form

Maine landlords may use a rental application form to screen prospective tenants. A rental application collects information relating to finances, rental history, and past evictions.

7 pages
Residential Sublease Agreement

A Maine sublease agreement is a legal contract where a tenant ("sublessor") rents (“subleases”) property to a new tenant (“sublessee”), usually with the landlord’s permission.

9 pages
Roommate Agreement

A Maine roommate agreement is a legal contract between two or more people (“co-tenants”) who share a rental property according to rules they set, including for things like splitting the rent. This agreement binds the co-tenants living together, and doesn’t include the landlord.

8 pages
Commercial Lease Agreement

A Maine commercial lease agreement is a legal contract arranging the rental of commercial space between a landlord and a business.

Maine Required Residential Lease Disclosures

  • Late or Returned Check Fees (required for some leases) – Maine leases must disclose the presence and amount of any late fees, for these fees to be legally enforceable.
  • Bed Bug Disclosure (required for some leases) – Maine property cannot be rented if it has a suspected bed bug infestation. If an adjoining property has an infestation, this must be disclosed in the lease, together with an open offer to provide inspection information related to infestation treatments.
  • Radon Disclosure (required for all leases) – Maine leases must provide the results of any recently completed radon testing, along with an addendum from the Department of Health which acknowledges the dangers of radon exposure.
  • Energy Efficiency Disclosure Statement (required for some leases) – Maine leases must contain an energy efficiency statement if the tenant is expected to pay utilities directly to the utility company or landlord. This must also include a 12-month utility history, or (if paid directly) the utility supplier’s contact information.
  • Common Area Utility Disclosure (required for some leases) – Maine property that shares a utility line with a common area (i.e., stairwell, hallway, storage area, water heaters) or other areas outside of the dwelling must disclose this in the lease.
  • Security Deposit Holdings (required for some leases) – Maine landlords collecting a security deposit must provide a written disclosure of how funds will be kept during the lease.
  • Smoking Policy Disclosure (required for all leases) – Maine rental property with a smoking policy must note this in the lease, including specifics about where smoking is allowed.
  • Lead-Based Paint Disclosure (required for some leases) – For any property built before 1978, federal law requires that a Maine residential lease must contain a lead-based paint disclosure with an EPA informational pamphlet, plus notice of any lead hazards on the property.

To learn more about required disclosures in Maine, click here.

Maine Landlord Tenant Laws

  • Warranty of Habitability – Maine landlords can only rent out habitable property, which means providing certain features essential to basic health and safety. This includes things like heat, plumbing, electricity, and sound structural elements. Landlords must repair any issues within a reasonable time after proper notice from the tenant. Failure to repair lets a tenant sue the landlord, terminate the lease, or repair and deduct from the rent. Tenants in Maine aren’t allowed to withhold rent.
  • Evictions – Maine landlords may evict for rent default, lease violations, or illegal acts, among other things. Before filing eviction, landlords must serve tenants with prior notice to pay, comply, or quit, depending on the eviction type. This means most evictions in Maine take between one week to several months.
  • Security Deposits – Maine caps security deposits at a maximum of 2 months’ rent. Upon lease termination, the landlord must return any unused portion of a security deposit within 30 days.
  • Lease Termination – Maine lets tenants break a month-to-month lease with 30 days of advance notice. A fixed-term lease can’t be terminated early without active military duty, landlord harassment, uninhabitable property, or domestic abuse.
  • Rent Increases and Fees – Maine landlords in some cases must comply with the Rent Control Ordinance, which caps rent increases to a maximum of 10%. If the rental property is not in a rent-controlled city, then landlords can raise rent by as much as they like, as often as they like, as long as they provide at least 45 days of advance notice. Maine caps late fees at 4% of the monthly rent, and caps returned check fees at 12% per annum from date of the payment, plus any court costs and processing charges.
  • Landlord Entry – Maine landlords may enter rental property for purposes reasonably related to the tenancy, like maintenance, inspections, and showings. In most cases, they have to give at least 24 hours of advance notice before entering, unless it’s an emergency situation.
  • Settling Legal Disputes – Maine allows landlord-tenant disputes in small claims court, as long as the amount in controversy is under $6,000. Evictions are not allowed in small claims.

To learn more about landlord tenant laws in Maine, click here.