Landlords and tenants of residential property in Virginia can use a standard (or our customizable) Lease Agreement to outline the terms and conditions of a specific rental property.
What is a Lease Agreement?
All residential lease agreements must include certain information mandated by Federal, state, and local law.
Lease agreements for the rental of residential property are legal documents containing terms and conditions such as the rent, applicable late fees and grace periods, and landlord and tenant obligations and responsibilities.
For example, all lease or rental agreements should include the following:
- The names and identifying details of the tenant and landlord
- The address of the property being rented
- Pet allowances and prohibitions
- Lead-based paint hazard, mold, and other health and safety disclosures
- Rent (amount, monthly or another term, due date) and security deposit details
- Length of the lease term (e.g., 12 months)
States will certainly differ on leasing requirements, so a lease agreement for your Virginia rental may vary in a minor or major way from contracts to rent property in other states.
Some states may impose stricter health and safety regulations on a legal contract to rent property, while others may provide for lenient landlord right-of-entry laws.
Familiarizing yourself with Virginia’s specific laws will help protect your financial and legal rights and allow for a comprehensive lease or rental agreement.
Virginia Residential Lease Agreement Sample
The sample lease agreement below describes a contract between “Landlord” Wendy Thomas and “Tenant” Sally Robinson.
The tenant agrees to rent a house in Richmond for $7,000 per month for a fixed term beginning on June 19, 2017 and ending on December 19, 2017.
The tenant agrees to pay for all utilities and services for the Premises in addition to the monthly rent.
This is a good example of a simple lease agreement’s provisions and how one should look in its final form.
Virginia Rental Lease Agreement Template (PDF & Word)
The Virginia Residential Lease Agreement Template below defines all necessary lease agreement terms.
Virginia Landlord-Tenant Rental Laws
Virginia landlord-tenant law imposes specific and distinct requirements for landlords and tenants when entering lease agreements. Title 55.1, Chapter 12 of the Virginia Code(Virginia Residential Landlord and Tenant Act) provides the following:
- The maximum amount that a landlord may require as a security deposit from a tenant for a residential lease is two (2) months’ rent. (VA Code § 55.1-1226)
- The security deposit must be returned to the tenant within forty-five (45) days following the termination of the lease or the date the tenant vacates the property. The landlord must also give a written statement itemizing any deductions, damages, or charges taken from the security deposit. (VA Code § 55.1-1226)
Landlord Right of Entry:
- A landlord must give at least 72 hours’ notice to the tenant before entering the property for routine maintenance that has not been requested by the tenant. If the tenant requests maintenance or in cases of emergency, the landlord is not required to provide notice to the tenant. (VA Code § 55.1-1229) It is best to state this in your rental contract so everyone knows Virginia’s law and the tenant’s rights.
- A landlord must disclose the name and address of the person authorized to manage the property and the owner or agent authorized to receive demands and notices on the landlord’s behalf. (VA Code § 55.1-1216)
- Landlords in Virginia must make disclosures regarding the presence of any mold, defective drywall, lead-based paint, location adjacent to military institutions, and methamphetamine manufacturing. (VA Code §§ 55.1-1215 – 55.1-1219)
- The landlord has five (5) days after a tenant moves in to provide the tenant with a written report itemizing any existing damage in the rental property at the time of occupancy. The tenant has five (5) days after receipt to object to the report. (VA Code §55.1-1214)
- The landlord is required to comply with applicable building and housing codes regarding health and safety, make repairs to keep premises habitable, keep common areas clean and safe, supply running water and reasonable amounts of hot water at all times and reasonable air conditioning and heat in season, and maintain in good and safe working condition all electrical, plumbing, sanitary, heating, ventilating, air-conditioning and other facilities and appliances. (VA Code § 55.1-1220)
- Lead-Based Paint Disclosure – Housing built before 1978 may contain lead-based paint, which can pose health hazards if not managed properly. Landlords must provide tenants with a lead-based paint disclosure and a copy of the lease agreement. (Title 42 U.S. Code § 4852(d))
How to Write a Rental Agreement in Virginia
Follow the steps below to write rental agreements in Virginia.
Step 1 – Fill Out Date of Agreement
Write the date of the lease or rental agreement.
Step 2 – Enter Parties’ Information
Provide the name and address of the parties that are signing the agreement. First is the landlord or management company and their current address. Then write in all tenants and their current addresses.
Step 3 – Describe Property
Describe the type of rental property such as an apartment or house and provide the full street address of the rental property.
Step 4 – Enter Term of Lease
Write the term (length) of the lease in months and enter the beginning and end dates of the lease. If the lease is month-to-month, provide the start date of the lease.
Step 5 – Enter Rent Details
Provide the monthly rental amount, the date the rent is due each month and the acceptable payment method(s). Any late fees or grace periods for late payment of rent can be added.
Step 6 – Enter Security Deposit Amount
Write the amount of the security deposit the landlord will collect from the tenant, typically done at the beginning of the lease.
Step 7 – Additional Provisions
Provide for additional and optional provisions such as regarding the use of a guarantor, payment of utilities, maintenance and repairs, alterations, or allowance or prohibition of pets, smoking, or sublease.
Step 8 – Signatures
The landlord and tenant(s) will sign and date the lease agreement.
Sample Virginia Rental Agreement
Use the free form below to contract with a tenant to rent a property in Virginia. Alternatively, create a customizable legally binding Virginia rental agreement using our document builder.