My tenant is asking if they can have a guest in the house for 4 months

12 Replies

Hi BP nation,

I have a question about one of my rentals. I rent a 4 bedroom house to 3 collage student in the past. They also have a cosigner on file. Last week, they asked me that one of their family members visiting from Denmark for the summer for a school program, however, he is not happy with a family he was placed with. Since they have an extra bedroom they asked if he can stay with them and he will be there until the end of august.

Now I want to know what should I do let him stay. Do I need any paperwork.

To be honest, they could just ask him to come without telling me and hope we do not find out.

Please help me with this problem.I know we have a lot of experienced land lord on this awesome website.

Thank you

Originally posted by @Sohrab Khosravi :

To be honest, they could just ask him to come without telling me and hope we do not find out.

It seems to me that you have some good tenants who want to be fair with you. I would be inclined to reciprocate and allow them to use the extra room for their guest. It would be prudent to draw up an agreement that spells out the length of time the guest will be staying and that they must abide by the terms of the current lease. You may want to charge a reasonable fee for the additional lease. When the additional rent is paid each month it will be evidence that the agreement was clear and was accepted. This could be important if the additional tenant decides to stay for a much longer period of time or you wish to remove them for non compliance with other lease terms.

I would want a full personal info for the additional person.  Do you rent for a flat fee or per person?  What about utilities?  If you pay any of the utilities an extra person will increase the usage.  I would bill for that increase.  Over all I would be inclined to allow it assuming it doesn't cost you any extra, isn't overcrowding the property, and you have info on the new person.  Be sure you let the existing tenants know that they will be responsible for any damages done by the guest.  Maybe get a signed statement to that effect.

@Sohrab Khosravi  this is a interesting dilemma.

What does the current lease say about house guest/who is allowed to live @ the property?  Do they rent/room? or for the whole house?  

@Jeff Rabinowitz  has some great points.  Most important is they are great tenants - they communicate  up front.

II would just add that you sit down and talk with the new tenant.  Do your due diligence on the new tenant.  If nothing comes up, follow the points given by Jeff.

I say depends on the relationship you have with your tenants. If it's good and they are trustworthy, then you may just want to have a talk with them to inform them that they are responsible for their guest and any damages or extra costs that may occur. If it's not so good and you feel they can not be trusted, then you definitely should have the guest sign a short term lease agreement.

If you trust your tenants, then i would let them share their extra bedroom with the exchange student..It seems the tenants want to be straight forward with you, that's a good sign.

Communicate with them that they will be held responsible for anything that could possibly go wrong, since their names on the lease.

Thank you so much @Paul Ewing @Aaron Hall @Jeff Rabinowitz @Uriel Sanchez @David Stefanovic For your help and support.

The house is on a flat rent base and is not charged per room,the tenant is responsible for all of the bills.I have this wording on the lease," Tenant may not permit any guest to stay on the property longer than the amount of time permitted by any owner association rule or restrictive covenants or 15 days without landlord's written permission,whichever is less."

I like to give them the option to be honest, they have been good so far and they did take care of the house pretty good. Is anyone having a sample addendum that I can reword and use.

Thank you so much for your help.

If the tenants are good paying tenants I would just write an addendum to the lease outlining the exact length of the stay for the visitor.

If you have had past problems with the tenant in any capacity I would not allow this.

As always, this depends on what is in your lease. If not already, it would be wise to add something similar to this:

"Occupancy: is strictly limited to the people named on the lease. If you have guests who are going to stay longer than 3 days, please get prior approval in writing from the landlord."

With someone wanting to stay 4 months, that long surpasses qualifying as a "guest"

They would need to fill out an application, then if they qualify, add their name to the lease and get signature.

Also, you could (probably should) charge a lease initiation fee or something similar to pay for your time.

This sets the precedence that a lease is legally binding and not easily changed.

Pretty reasonable. I would allow it. Many tenants would let others move in without telling the landlord.

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