Tenant Not Signing Lease & Lead Paint Disclosure

10 Replies

Hi there, I rent rooms out in my house which I also live in.

I recently had a new tenant move in as of April 28th.

When tenants move in I usually have them sign a month-to-month lease right away or if not [conflicting schedules or me forgetting] then I post date the lease to day of move in or start of month and we sign.

As my newest tenant keeps to himself a lot or is often out and I have been pretty busy I posted the lease and lead disclosure to his door with a note asking him to please review and sign it and talk to me if he had any questions or concerns.

My problem is that it is now the 13th of May and the lease is still taped to his door and I have reminded him casually twice and in a more serious tone once that "I really need him to get the lease back to me."

This man is in his 40s so I don't think there is any excuse for it not being done or him not understanding that he has to sign it.

At what point do I start running into problems such as him automatically getting rights for having been living her a certain amount of time?

At what point should I just give him some kind of notice to vacate or do I even need to as he hasn't signed a lease? 

What do I need to be doing or thinking about in this situation?

I looked around a bit online but I couldn't find any information on this topic.

Thanks - ian

Your problem is you let him move in without a written agreement. He could just avoid you until he has been there for 30 days and then he is your tenant. You need to find a way to get in touch with this guy. 

Yeah, why are you letting people move in before signing the lease?

step 1 - background/credit check

step 2 - sign the lease

step 3 - payment

step 4 - move-in

do it out of order at your peril...

@Ian Ian Not trying to pile on, but make sure the lease is fully executed before letting anyone move in.  If the person balks at signing a lease tell them they cannot move in until they do.  Then watch how fast they sign.

The tenant is comfortable now and obviously doesn't see signing it as an urgent matter.

@Ian Ian

I got a really good deal on my third house I purchased and was rushed by the seller to close.  I didn't understand why until my agent told me that the seller was being sued by a previous tenant for not disclosing the Lead Based Paint Addendum.   I  closed on Friday and his court date was the following Monday.   I found out later that he lost the court case and lost all the remaining properties he owned.   I agree with the others you need to get it signed ASAP and don't let anyone else move in without signing first.  I make them initial next to the Lead Based Paint Addendum, just to make sure they did get a copy!

I have never given possession of a property prior to lease signing. If he doesn't comply immediately maybe send him a termination letter Just a thought Good Luck?

Just spoke with my tenant and explained that I need the lease signed because if I don't it puts me in a bad position and that if he doesn't sign it I will have to ask him to leave and I don't really want to do that. 

He stated that he understands and agreed to get it read and signed by this evening.

@Hal Thompson  - Thanks for that checklist, I will be certain to follow it from now on!

@Michael Noto  - You're right and I will absolutely be doing it correctly from now on. I don't think he is really balking at it so much as I live in a place with a lot of well meaning 'hippie' types and they just don't understand or believe that these sort of things are important. 

@Wayne Smith - I have always been good about the lead paint disclosure but good to know how important it could be!

@Sam T. - That is sort of what I was trying to figure out, what I do if he doesn't believe in leases or refuses to sign or something else. Thanks.

Perhaps I wasn't clear enough in my original post but I fully know that I should have had the lease signed prior to move in, what I am trying to figure out now is what I do if he continues to ignore the signing of it, do I need to serve a 24 or 72 hour notice? Just call the police right off?

Thanks again, ian

@Ian Ian I use Adobe Echosign for e-signing, This gives everyone an incontrovertible record of what was signed. They also initial disclosures that way too (ie lead based paint) and I email them the disclosures (more record proof they got it). This way, 8 months from now, you're not frantically trying to find the copy of your lead based paint disclosure when you need it.

@Hal Thompson - Thanks I will check into that.

@Ian Ian Also, presuming your rental is in Oregon, check these guys out:


If you become a member, they have model forms that you should use to do leases.

(You can see previews of the forms here: http://www.rentegration.com/form-list/rha-oregon)

These associations stay on top of the law and update their forms accordingly, so you don't have to. Since rental laws are state specific, it is best to use the association for the state where your rental is located.

@Hal Thompson - Thanks again!

Thanks all, sat down with the guy asked if we could just sign things, we did. All good!

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