The Rhode Island rental agreements are legal contracts between a landlord and a tenant. The tenant makes regular payments (“rent”) in exchange for the use of the property. The rental agreements establish other terms associated with the use of the property, though no terms can supersede state laws.
The Rhode Island residential lease agreement (“rental agreement”) is a document that outlines the terms and conditions of the residential use of real estate in exchange for rent payments. The contract includes the length of the agreement (” lease term”), payment amount (”rent”), and the obligations of both landlord and tenant. Create…
The Rhode Island month-to-month rental agreement is a written document that allows a tenant to rent a property for a month at a time from a landlord, in exchange for a fee. This document has no end date but enables either party to alter the agreement monthly. A month-to-month lease is an…
The Rhode Island rental application form is part of the screening process that landlords utilize to help choose good tenants to rent their properties. This document has the information the landlord needs to order background history reports. It can help a landlord decide who to enter into a lease with. Applicable Law…
The Rhode Island sublease agreement is a contract between an existing tenant (“sublessor”) and a new tenant (“subtenant”). The subtenant makes periodic payments towards the sublessor’s rental obligation in exchange for access to the property. The initial tenant must have the landlord’s approval to begin subletting. A sublease agreement is an option…
The Rhode Island roommate agreement (“room rental agreement”) is a contract between two or more tenants sharing a rental property (“co-tenant”). This document establishes the financial responsibilities of each tenant as well as detailed terms and conditions for the shared space. When a tenant decides that paying the rent and the utilities…
The Rhode Island commercial lease agreement is a contract that allows a business or commercial entity to rent office, retail, or industrial space. This document outlines the rights and responsibilities of the business and the landlord and is usually longer than a standard residential lease. Rhode Island Commercial Landlord/ Tenant Law Most…
Rhode Island Required Lease Disclosures
- Landlord’s Name & Address (required for all) – The name and address of the landlord or authorized agent must be provided in a Rhode Island lease agreement so landlords and tenants can communicate on legal notices or matters of tenancy.
- Housing Code Violation Notice (required for some) – If a Rhode Island rental property has outstanding housing code violations in the building, they must be disclosed in the lease.
- Lead Based Paint Disclosure (required for some) – Any pre-1978 Rhode Island property with a unit for rent must include a lead based paint disclosure and EPA-approved pamphlet with notice of any existing hazards in the lease.
To learn more about required disclosures in Rhode Island, click here.
Rhode Island Landlord Tenant Laws
- Warranty of Habitability – In Rhode Island, all landlords must maintain the habitability of their units by providing plumbing, heating, electrical outlets, and more that meet state code. At the same time, these landlords must provide repairs in a “reasonable” amount of time after receiving a request. If their response is not prompt, a tenant may be legally allowed to withhold rent or perform a repair and deduct.
- Evictions – A Rhode Island landlord may evict a tenant for non-payment of rent (5-day notice), violating a lease term (20-day notice) or committing a crime (immediate). As such, Rhode Island evictions can conclude in less than a week or in over a month.
- Security Deposits – Rhode Island prohibits landlords from charging security deposits valued at more than 1 months’ rent. It also requires landlords to return all remaining deposits to their rightful owner 20 days after a lease concludes.
- Lease Termination – A Rhode Island tenant must provide 30 days of notice before their landlord may consider terminating their month-to-month lease. Also, a Rhode Island landlord may only consider early termination of a fixed term lease if one of the following conditions exist: active military duty, landlord harassment, unit uninhabitability, advanced age, or severe illness.
- Rent Increases & Fees – Rhode Island landlords can raise rent as much as they want. They can only raise it after providing 30 days’ notice (60 days for tenants over 62 years old) to all effected tenants, as well. Rhode Island landlords can also charge most fees at any rate they wish, save for bounced check fees (capped at $25 plus 3 times the value of the check).
- Landlord Entry – After providing 2 days of advanced notice, a Rhode Island landlord may enter an occupied unit at a “reasonable” time. However, cases of emergency entry are exempt from these requirements.
- Settling Legal Disputes – Rhode Island is limited when it comes to accepting landlord-tenant disputes in small claims court. In fact, these courts do not accept eviction cases and only accepts cases valued at less than $2,500.
To learn more about landlord tenant laws in Rhode Island, click here.