I recently received a call from a potential client and the issue exemplified a trend. Tenant stated that there was an oral agreement to waive rent in exchange for work performed. Oral agreements are very difficult to prove in court in front of the trier of facts. I feel EVERY Tenant should utilize the following advice:
Every agreement that one has with their Landlord should be in WRITING. It does NOT have to be a notarized or a professional document, simply a handwritten letter signed by the parties stating the terms of their agreement.
For example: “Tenant and Landlord agree that from this date forward Rent Payment will be due on the 10th day of the month instead of the 1st day of the month”.
I understand that it is easier to avoid memorializing agreements as it perhaps shows a lack of trust by the parties or it is simply a hassle. However, I always explain to clients that Landlord/Tenant relationships should be cordial, friendly, and trusting, but at the end of the day it is a business relationship as well. If a Landlord is trustworthy she/he will not hesitate to sign any agreement which was agreed to.
If you have any follow up questions to this topic or other topics do not hesitate to contact us.