Renting an apartment or a shared residence requires the establishment of a specific contract. This colocation lease can be established according to different formulas, according to the needs and the will of the occupants.
The joint tenancy: what are the specifics?
The lease or joint tenancy agreement constitutes a deed written and signed by all the actors of a joint tenancy.
Through this document, the owner grants each of the occupants the right to use one or more rooms of his accommodation. For their part, each tenant agrees to comply with the requirements set out in the contract that binds him to the owner.
Ideally, the individual involvement of each roommate is therefore recommended to establish an adequate roommate lease.
What are the conditions of a joint tenancy?
The signing of a colocation contract meets various conditions. The colocation universe has a legal framework well defined by the ALUR law. If this mode of occupation offers the advantage of benefiting from a large accommodation at a good price, the persons concerned must not be married or civilized.
They can then enjoy a common room and a bedroom each. They must also use the residence as their principal residence.
How long does a roommate contract last?
The duration of the lease depends on the needs of each tenant and the type of deed. For students, it is notably possible to obtain a 9-month agreement in a furnished residence with the possibility of renewal each year.
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What are the different types of tenancy agreements?
The colocation lease can be presented under several forms :
A single contract for all joint tenants;
An individual contract for each occupant;
A contract signed by the main tenant and the sub-tenants.
Each of its forms has specific provisions and advantages to be taken into account when choosing the type of contract.
The single colocation lease for all co-owners
As its name suggests, the single colocation lease corresponds to a contract signed by all the roommates. Jointly bound by this act, the latter have the same rights and the same duties. On the other hand, if the name of a resident is not mentioned on the document, this one becomes a simple occupant and has no rights on the joint tenancy.
Despite the uniqueness of this contract, the rent is not shared between the different tenants. However, the owner can claim full payment from any of the joint tenants if the document contains a solidarity clause. The tenant concerned will then be responsible for contacting the other occupants to take their share.
The same goes for housing charges, which are paid in one go. These can be paid by way of provisions or flat rate, depending on the roommates.
The individual colocation contract
The owner of a joint tenancy can choose to have each tenant sign an individual lease. The contract is then in the name of each of them and does not include a solidarity clause, unless otherwise provided. This type of deed is the most used in student residences.
Under an individual contract, the leases are independent and each refer to a single room in the dwelling. It therefore takes as many as the number of rooms rented. Thus, each occupant has his private space and can enjoy it as he wishes.
The contract between each co-tenant and the landlord must, moreover, specify all the details of the common life :
The parts assigned to each;
The common areas (kitchen, shower, toilets, etc.);
Use of furniture and household appliances;
load management, etc.
Each of the signatories of the lease therefore undertakes to respect the clauses of the contract and to fulfill their obligations.
The colocation lease with a main tenant
In this case, the accommodation is rented to a person who can choose to sublet it in turn to other people. Of course, the main tenant must imperatively obtain the prior agreement of the lessor and is solely responsible in the eyes of the owner.
He is therefore responsible for paying the charges and the rent, even if it is up to him to define the clauses of the joint tenancy as he wishes.
The main advantage with such a lease is that the sub-tenants are not accountable to the landlord. However, their contracts end with the lease of the main tenant.
What about the solidarity clause?
There solidarity clause is an excellent way for the owner to protect himself in the event of non-payment. It commits each of the joint tenants to pay the part of the joint tenants who do not fulfill their financial obligations. The occupants therefore become jointly and severally liable for the rent and all the charges related to the accommodation.
In the absence of such a clause, each joint tenant (or his guarantor) is financially responsible for own expenses.
What happens if a roommate leaves?
If a tenant decides to leave a joint tenancy, he must give notice to the lessor respecting the deadlines and the formalities of leave defined in the contract.
Case of an individual lease
In the case of an individual lease, the problem does not really arise. As the roommates are independent, they can return the keys and request the return of their security deposit. The lessor can then choose to take on a new occupant without consulting the remaining tenants.
Case of a single lease
In the case of a single lease, the tenant must contact the other occupants to recover their share of the security deposit. If there is a solidarity clause, there remains engaged for the six months following his departureunless a new tenant signs before.
Shared lease: what to keep?
Ultimately, the colocation contract constitutes a compulsory act when a dwelling is rented to several tenants as a principal residence. It makes it possible to define the rights and obligations of each person and can take several forms. For its drafting, you can use a customizable template online.
However, do not hesitate to seek the assistance of a specialist in case of doubt or hesitation.
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