Pennsylvania Residential Lease Agreement

Last Updated: November 13, 2023 by Roberto Valenzuela

A Pennsylvania residential lease agreement (“rental agreement”) is a legal contract between a landlord overseeing a residential property and a tenant who wishes to rent it. A residential lease may, on or before move-in, additionally require a security deposit from the tenant as assurance against future property damage.

Pennsylvania Lease Agreement Disclosures

The below disclosure is required for all residential lease agreements in Pennsylvania.

Disclosure Applicable To
Lead Paint All Units Built Before 1978

Lead-Based Paint Disclosure

Applicable to all Pennsylvania rentals built before 1978.

Lead-Based Paint

For any property built before 1978, federal law requires that a Pennsylvania residential lease must contain a lead-based paint disclosure. This requires landlords to do the following:

Download: Pennsylvania Lead-Based Paint Disclosure Form (PDF)

Optional Disclosures and Addenda (Recommended)

The following lease agreement disclosures and addenda are not required by Pennsylvania law in residential lease agreements, but assist with tenant management and help limit landlord liability.

Optional Disclosure How the Disclosure is Helpful
Asbestos Informs tenants about any asbestos hazards related to the property. Tenants can take precautions to reduce asbestos hazards by avoiding any disturbance of asbestos fibers.
Bed Bugs Informs tenants whether the property or an adjacent unit has a history of suspected bed bug infestation, and reminds the tenant of the obligation to report suspected infestation immediately.
Landlord’s Name and Address Specifies the name and address of the landlord or authorized agent, to enable smooth communication of any important legal notice.
Late/Returned Check Fee Specifies late fees or returned check fees related to the lease. In Pennsylvania, there are no restrictions on late fees and a $25 cap on returned check fees.
Medical Marijuana Use Informs tenants about policy related to medical marijuana use on the rental property. Some state laws allow landlords to restrict marijuana usage to non-smoking methods only, or allow use only in designated smoking areas.
Mold Disclosure Informs tenants about actual or suspected mold contamination on the property, along with any remediation efforts, to help limit landlord liability.
Move-in Checklist Provides an inventory of existing property damage when the tenant takes possession of the rental property. This enables accurate deductions from the security deposit upon move-out.
Non-Refundable Fees Charges not agreed by the tenant in the lease may be refundable upon lease termination. For Pennsylvania  landlords to charge a non-refundable fee, it must be disclosed and agreed as such in the lease.
Shared Utilities Arrangements Discloses how utilities are billed, when multiple rental units share a utility meter for the whole building or property. A landlord may charge separately for utilities through the installation of a submetering system or ratio billing system.
Smoking Informs tenants of designated smoking areas that do not interfere with the quiet enjoyment of other tenants.
Some Pennsylvania cities, like Philadelphia, have more comprehensive rules than the statewide standard. Always check local laws.

Consequences of Not Including Mandatory Disclosures

Mandatory disclosures outline important health, safety, and property information for both landlord and tenant safety. A landlord who fails to provide federally or state-mandated disclosures could face legal consequences or monetary penalties, either from a tenant lawsuit or from state officials.

Failure to comply with the federal lead-based paint hazard disclosure risks fines of tens of thousands of dollars per violation.