Cyber Monday: Try the Rent Guarantee and get the 1st MONTH FREE! *Offer ends December 15. Book a call to claim offer or use code CYBER2023

Why a Lawyer Should Review Your Lease Agreement

Key Takeaways

  • A solid lease agreement is the foundation of every great landlord-tenant relationship. This legally binding contract clearly outlines the terms and conditions of the rental arrangement.
  • Because a lease agreement is legally enforceable, it's crucial for a lawyer to review the document before either party signs it.
  • When a lawyer reviews a lease agreement, you get the added benefits of their legal expertise to help understand complex terms and avoid costly mistakes.

Published on Apr 17, 2024 | Updated on Apr 17, 2024

A hand holding a magnifying glass over a lease agreement

Get through your rental applications faster

Never miss a rent payment

Stress-free guaranteed renting


It’s an exciting time when a tenant receives a lease agreement—for both the tenant and the landlord involved. Finding an excellent tenant who checks all the boxes and will care for your home can be a challenge. Tenants feel similarly, with the average renter looking at, and even losing out on, many properties before finding the right one.

While many landlords and renters are aware that real estate agents will work with them, it is often lesser known that a lawyer can and should review a rental agreement to ensure it is ready for signing. 

What is a lease agreement?

A lease agreement is a legally binding contract between a landlord and a tenant that outlines the terms and conditions under which a property is rented. This agreement typically includes details such as the duration of the lease, the amount of rent to be paid, the responsibilities of both the landlord and the tenant, rules regarding the use of the property, conditions for terminating the lease, and any other relevant terms agreed upon by both parties.

Lease agreements can vary in length from short-term leases, such as month-to-month agreements, to long-term leases spanning several years. They are designed to protect the rights and interests of both the landlord and the tenant and provide a clear framework for the rental arrangement. Remember that the province the rental property is in determines the types of arrangements that can be made.

Why do you need a lease agreement?

A lease agreement serves several important purposes for both landlords and tenants.

  • Legal protection: A lease agreement provides legal protection for both parties by clearly outlining the terms and conditions of the rental arrangement. It helps to prevent disputes and misunderstandings by establishing the rights and responsibilities of each party.
  • Clarity: The lease agreement clearly defines important details such as the duration of the lease, the amount of rent, and any rules or regulations that must be followed. This clarity helps both parties understand what is expected of them during the tenancy.
  • Security: For landlords, a lease agreement provides security by ensuring a predictable rental income. It also outlines procedures for handling issues such as late payments or property damage. For tenants, it provides security by establishing their right to occupy the property for a specific period of time and protecting them from unexpected changes in rent or lease terms.
  • Enforceability: A lease agreement is a legally binding contract, which means that both parties are obligated to uphold their end of the agreement. In the event of a dispute, the terms of the lease can be enforced through legal means.
  • Documentation: Having a written lease agreement provides a record of the rental arrangement, including key details such as the security deposit amount, the condition of the property at the time of move-in, and any agreed-upon repairs or renovations. This documentation can be useful for resolving disputes or for reference during the tenancy.

Why should a lawyer review a lease agreement before signing?

Having a lawyer review a lease agreement before signing provides an extra layer of protection for both parties by offering:

  • Legal expertise: Lawyers are trained professionals who understand the nuances of contract law. They can identify any legal issues or potential pitfalls in the lease agreement that a layperson might overlook. This ensures that the terms of the agreement are fair and legally sound.
  • Protection of rights: A lawyer can review the lease agreement to ensure that it protects your rights as either a landlord or a tenant. They can help negotiate any terms that may be unfavorable or ambiguous, ensuring that your interests are adequately represented in the contract.
  • Understanding complex terms: Lease agreements can contain complex legal language and terms that may be difficult for the average person to understand. A lawyer can interpret these terms and explain them in plain language, helping you fully grasp the implications of the agreement before signing.
  • Avoidance of costly mistakes: Signing a lease agreement without fully understanding its terms can lead to costly mistakes or legal disputes down the line. A lawyer’s review can help identify any potential issues early on, saving you time, money, and stress in the long run.
  • Customization and negotiation: Depending on your specific needs and circumstances, a lawyer can help customize the lease agreement to better suit your interests. They can also assist in negotiating terms with the other party to achieve a more favorable outcome.

Review lease agreements in advance of signing

It’s important to review any legal document before you sign them, and a lease agreement is no different. From the landlord’s perspective, there can be clauses that invalidate the contract. From the tenant’s perspective, there could be terms that are not allowed in your province. Ensuring the contract is legally sound and fair is ideal for a great relationship with both parties.

The average tenant remains with a landlord for just over two years. If a landlord and a tenant have a great relationship, they usually want to keep their lease agreement going—and every solid landlord-tenant relationship starts with an accurate and error-free contract.

Learn more about Laws & Regulation

Learn more about Laws & Regulation

Library Books IconYou Are Reading
3. Why a Lawyer Should Review Your Lease Agreement
Library Books IconOther Blog Posts In This Series
  1. Lease Renewals: Everything You Need to Know as a Landlord
  2. Fixed Tenancy vs. Periodic Tenancy
  3. Why a Lawyer Should Review Your Lease Agreement
  4. What Are The Necessary Steps To Evicting A Delinquent Tenant?

Table of contents


Daily poll

Table of contents