California Roommate (Room Rental) Agreement

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The California Room Rental (Roommate) Agreement defines the arrangement between people occupying the same residence. The specifics of this arrangement can vary significantly. For instance, one roommate can be listed on the lease with a landlord while the other(s) is not. Additionally, each county will have its own definitions of rights or status regarding the various roommate situations that exist. It is therefore quite important to make sure one understands the regulations in the county of residence and the terms of the agreement they are signing into. This would, after all, be considered a signed contract and carry the same weight as any other contract in a court of law.

Typically, the Landlord will fill out a large part of this form or it may be filled out jointly. However regardless of who is doing the work, the terms one agrees to will be the framework of one’s living situation since this document should define the obligations placed on each participant. Thus one should make sure they are aware and understand exactly what he or she is agreeing listed in the terms of this agreement. Now, it is important to understand this lease is only an agreement between roommates and thus does not entitle one in holding a Landlord responsible for the same benefits that a contract between a Landlord and a Tenant does. If a roommate wants to have power with a Landlord/Owner of the property, he or she must have a signed lease with that entity.

How to Write

Step 1 – Enter the date of the agreement in the first paragraph

Step 2 – The names of the Tenants entering the agreement (there are room for three) should be entered. This must be their full names. Afterwards, enter the address of the property they have all agreed to enter a roommate agreement in.

Step 3 – Provide the starting date this contract takes effect and the date it terminates in the space provided.

Step 4 – In “Security Deposit,” enter the full security given to the landlord (spelled out then written as a dollar amount). In the following spaces enter the name of the Landlord or Roommate who receives the full amount then enter the date this money was given to hold. The breakdown of how much each Tenant should chip in for this should be entered below this main paragraph.

Step 5 – The “Rent” paragraph will define the rent amounts involved and require a break-down of how much each Tenant is required to pay toward the whole amount. First, enter the monthly rent amount to be paid to the Landlord. Then in the spaces below, enter the rent amount each Roommate must pay. Following this, enter the method the rent must be paid by (i.e. check, cash, etc) then enter where the rent should be sent and who must receive it. Finally, enter the monthly due date for the rent.

Step 6 – The next section requiring information to be entered will be Section 4 (“Kitchen Use and Clean Up). This will provide two checkboxes to define how food expenses will be handled and a space to enter how much space a Roommate has for kitchen storage.

Step 7 – Section 7 will also have two checkboxes. If a cleaning schedule has been devised check the appropriate box then attach it to the lease (the attachment should be signed).

Step 8 – Several additional considerations should be made when sharing a space. In the “Additional Agreement Terms” paragraph mark any subjects that have additional agreed upon terms. Document these terms on a separate document, have all the roommates sign it, then attach to the lease contract.

Step 9 – The last section to require definitions be made is the “Utilities” section. This will give an opportunity to specifically name how much each person is responsible for when it comes to major utilities in a table. In addition, there will be a space for any that have not been named in the table (the “Other” row).

Step 10 – Finally, each Roommate must provide his/her signature and print his/her name below that signature. The Lessor/Landlord will also need to provide a signature and print his/her name. This will be the action that makes this an enforceable contract between the roommates.