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Maine Lease Agreement Templates (6)

A Maine lease agreement allows a landlord and tenant to create a rental contract for the use of residential or commercial space. The tenant is allowed to occupy the property in return for a monthly payment to the landlord. In Maine, once a document has been signed by both parties, it becomes legally binding to both the landlord and tenant.
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Rental Application – Form used to screen a tenant before signing a lease to ensure their employment, income, credit, background, and any references make sure the person is a valid tenant.

By Type (6)

Standard Residential Lease Agreement – Provided by the Attorney General, the document is pursuant to all Maine laws for a standard fixed rental arrangement.

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Commercial Lease Agreement – Provided by the Maine Association of Realtors for any net lease for a business-related property.

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Month-to-Month Lease Agreement (Title 14 § 6002) – Known as a “tenancy at will,” which has no end date but can be canceled at any time by either the landlord or tenant. Either party must send a notice at least 30 days before the next payment date.

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Rent-to-Own Lease Agreement – Rental arrangement between a landlord and tenant, which also allows for the purchasing of the property according to certain agreed-upon terms and conditions.

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Room Rental (Roommate) Agreement – By and between individuals sharing a housing arrangement.

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Sublease Agreement – Arrangement between a tenant under a lease and a new tenant, the “subtenant,” who rents directly from the original and must follow the rules and regulations of the property.

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Required Disclosures (8)

  1. Bedbugs Infestation Disclosure – If the rental unit or adjacent rental unit is being treated or currently has bedbugs, it must be relayed to the tenant in writing. Refer to the Fact Sheet published by Maine Housing for more information.[1]
  2. Electricity to Common Areas – Unless both parties agree, the landlord may not bill the tenant for electricity, heat, or any utility or service for common areas in the property, such as hallways and stairwells.[2]
  3. Energy Efficiency Disclosure – The energy efficiency disclosure form is required to be completed by the landlord and signed by the tenant.[3]
  4. Lead-Based Paint Disclosure & EPA Pamphlet – Due to federal law, all residences built before 1978 must have this form attached and signed/acknowledged by the tenants. The document informs them about the potential of hazardous paint within the walls and that they should always be on the watch for cracking or chipping paint.
  5. Radon Disclosure Form (pamphlet included) – Starting in 2012, the landlord is required every 10 years to check for the existence of radon. This form must be issued to every tenant.[4]
  6. Rental Housing Rights Disclosure Form (Portland, Maine ONLY) – This one-page document must be handed to the tenant before occupancy.
  7. Security Deposit Location – The landlord must provide the bank name and account number where the funds are stored.[5]
  8. Smoking Policy – The landlord must state what the smoking policy is on the property, including whether it is generally allowed, only permitted in certain areas, or outright prohibited.[6]

Security Deposits

Maximum Amount – A maximum of two months’ rent may be required as a security deposit.[7] This requirement does not apply to owner-occupied buildings with five or fewer units.

Receipt – The landlord must provide a written receipt for each security deposit received, whether partially or in full.[8]

Collecting Interest – Only mobile home park operators are required to collect and pay interest on held security deposits.[9]

Returning – The landlord must return the funds within 30 days of the end of the tenancy if it is a fixed lease or 21 days if it is a month-to-month lease.[10]

  • Itemized List – If any portion of the security deposit is retained, the landlord must provide the tenant with a written statement itemizing the reasons for the retention along with the remainder of their security deposit.[10]

When is Rent Due?

Grace Period – Maine state law establishes a 15-day grace period in which the landlord cannot charge a fee or begin eviction proceedings for the late payment of rent. If the tenant fails to pay their rent within this grace period, the landlord can issue a seven-day notice to quit.[11]

Maximum Late Fee – A landlord may not charge more than 4% of the monthly rent amount for late rent payment.[12] The landlord must give written notice of this penalty to the tenant at the time they enter the lease agreement.[13]

NSF Fee – The landlord can assess 12% of the check (rent) amount for a non-sufficient funds (NSF) fee.[14]

Withholding Rent – If the landlord fails to pay for utility service in the landlord’s name, then the tenant may pay for the service and deduct the amount paid from their rent.[15]

Right to Enter (Landlord)

Standard Access – A landlord must give 24 hours’ notice before entering the rental property in any non-emergency situation.[16]

Immediate Access – A landlord may enter a rental property without giving notice to the tenant in the case of an emergency.[16] This includes an emergency in which the welfare of an animal is at risk.[17]

Abandonment

Absence – Maine state law does not specify the length of time that a tenant must be absent before a rental unit is considered abandoned.

Breaking the Lease – If the tenant breaks the lease, the landlord may recover rent and damages. However, the amount of this recovery must be reduced by the net rent obtainable by reasonable efforts to rerent the property, and the landlord must make such efforts to try and rent the property to a new tenant.[18]

Tenant’s Utility Shutoff – The landlord may give seven days’ written notice of termination if the tenant’s failure to pay for essential utilities constitutes a breach of the lease agreement or has caused the property to be unfit for human habitation.[19]

Unclaimed Property – The landlord must store any abandoned or unclaimed property left behind by a tenant for 7-14 days and provide written notice to the tenant at their last known address.[20] This notice must include an itemized list of the abandoned items and advise the tenant that they must respond within seven days to claim their property.[21]

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