All Your Apartment Lease Renewal Questions Answered

Renewing Your Lease

If you’re enjoying your current apartment and its convenient access to work and dining options, make sure you consider whether or not you want to renew your lease well before your current lease agreement expires. This will save you the hassle of searching for a new apartment if you’re happy with your current digs or give you options for negotiating better terms.

Where to begin? We’ve got all your lease renewal questions answered.

Will my lease renewal have the same terms as my existing lease?

For better or worse, the answer is no. Once your current lease expires, you’ll need to sign a new lease agreement, which might have changes that could range from higher rental rates to a new length of lease terms. Beginning the process of renewing your lease early gives you the opportunity to negotiate with your landlord for better terms. Many will let you sign a new lease agreement as early as three months prior to current lease expiration. Signing earlier could prevent you from being subject to an annual rent increase.

Is lease renewal automatic? 

Even if you’re a great tenant who always pays your rent on time, lease renewal isn’t guaranteed. You may also have to fill out a lease application again and undergo a credit check. Your landlord could deny your request for a lease renewal for a variety of reasons that have nothing to do with your reputation as a tenant. So make sure if you want to stay in your current apartment that you start working on your lease renewal sooner rather than later. That way if your landlord doesn’t want to renew your lease, you’ll have time to search for a new place to live.

What impact will my current tenancy have on my ability to renew my lease?

A lot, so be the kind of tenant a landlord wants. Pay your rent on time, don’t violate the rules, be respectful of your neighbors and take care of your apartment. If you want to stay in your current digs, you don’t want to give your landlord any obvious reasons to deny your lease renewal request.

Can I remove my roommate from my lease?

Is she a slob who doesn’t clean up after herself? Or is he always late paying his portion of the rent? Whatever the reason, you may be wanting to remove your roommate from the lease. Doing so can be complicated, however, so you should see it as a last resort. Some landlords will allow you to remove a roommate’s name from the lease, but if they do, that means you alone will be responsible for the full rental fee. If you can’t financially accommodate that, it’s best to find another roommate before kicking out the current one.

If you’ve decided you want to stay in your current rental apartment, be sure to start the lease renewal process early. Many apartment complexes will also let you renew your lease online, which makes it easy to extend your current living situation for another several months or years and will also help you maintain social distancing in these trying times. Lease renewal time is a good time to review your renters insurance policy, too, and make any needed updates.