An Indiana lease agreement is a legal document that defines the rights and obligations of the landlord (lessor) and the tenant (lessee).
The most important clauses in every lease agreement are:
The term of the lease
Rent amount and the rent payment due date
Mandatory clauses provided by federal and state laws
Before negotiating the lease agreement terms, the tenant will first submit the application to the landlord. The application will have details about the tenant and references from their previous landlords.
After reviewing the tenant's application, the landlord will then start the lease agreement drafting procedure with the tenant.
Indiana Lease Agreement Required Disclosures
If you are drafting the lease agreement for the property located in Indiana, there is one required disclosure you must include in your lease agreement provided by federal law, and three disclosures provided by Indiana state law:
Lead-based paint disclosure. As required by federal law, for every leased property built before 1978, the landlord must insert this disclosure in the lease agreement and inform the tenant if there is any lead-based paint present at the property.
Floodplain disclosure. If the rental unit’s lowest floor (including the basement) is at or below the 100-year frequency flood elevation, the landlord must inform the tenant about such a fact. (§ 32-31-1-21)
Manager and owner information disclosure. The person signing the lease agreement as the landlord shall disclose the following to the tenant:
Name and address of the property manager
Name and address of the owner's agent authorized to receive the notifications from the tenant
Water and sewage disposal service disclosure. If the landlord bills for the water and sewage disposal service separately from the rent, they must provide a disclosure that includes the following:
Description of services provided
A list of fees that are charged for this service
The following statement: “If you believe you are being charged in violation of this disclosure or if you believe you are being billed in excess of the utility services provided to you as described in this disclosure, you have a right under Indiana law to file a complaint with the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission. You may contact the Commission at (insert phone number for the tenant to contact the Commission).” (§ 8-1-2-1.2)
Indiana Lease Agreement Optional Disclosures
Apart from the mandatory disclosures, many contractual parties choose to include some additional disclosures to their lease agreement, in order to provide an extra stability to their contractual relationship.
Asbestos disclosure. The landlord must inform the tenant if there is asbestos in the construction of the rental unit. The landlord must also tell the tenant how to use the rental unit safely so as not to disturb the asbestos fibers.
Mold disclosure. If there is a history of mold appearing at the property, the landlord should notify the tenant and provide them with mold treatment instructions.
Consequences of Non-Disclosure
According to federal law, the landlord can face up to $19,507 in penalties if they fail to include the lead-based paint disclosure in the lease agreement.
The tenant can also file a civil lawsuit for damages caused by the landlord's failure to disclose safety and health hazards at the leased property.
Indiana Lease Agreement Security Deposits
Security Deposit Maximum
The Indiana state code does not set the top limit for the security deposit. Therefore, the landlord and the tenant shall negotiate a reasonable amount and insert it in the lease agreement.
In practice, most lease agreements stipulate that the deposit amount equals two months' rent.
Security Deposit Return
The landlord must return the security deposit to the tenant within 45 days of the lease termination. (§ 32-31-3-12)
If any deductions were made, the landlord must provide an itemized list of the deductions for the unpaid rent or utilities. In the event that an itemized list is not provided, the tenant can request a refund of the full deposit amount.
When is Rent Due in Indiana? (Grace Period)
The due date for the rent payment should be agreed upon by the landlord and the tenant and included in the lease agreement.
The State of Indiana does not provide any grace period for the rent payment. That means the landlord can charge any late fees the moment rent is due.
Anyway, that doesn’t stop the landlord and the tenant from determining the grace period in the lease agreement if they wish to do so.
After the rent is due, the landlord can also send a 10-day notice to the tenant to pay or quit. (§ 32-31-1-6)
Indiana Rent Late Fees
No late fee cap is determined by Indiana law. That means that the landlord can charge any amount they consider reasonable.
However, it is important that any late fee be provided in the lease agreement. Otherwise, the landlord cannot charge any late fees they didn’t inform the tenant about in the lease agreement.
Indiana NSF Checks
If the landlord receives the bad check from the tenant, they can issue a notice to the tenant requesting the payment of:
Compensation for NSF Checks
The face value of the check
Additional fee not exceeding $27.50 or 5% of the check value
The tenant will have 10 days to compensate the landlord before any court proceedings can be initiated. (§ 35-43-5-5)
Indiana Landlord’s Right to Enter
Indiana code only provides that the landlord should give a “reasonable written or oral notice” to the tenant before accessing the rental unit. (§ 32-31-5-6(g))
A 24-hour notice is, in most cases, considered to be a reasonable notice before entering the rental unit.
Indiana Lease Agreement FAQ
The Indiana lease agreement is a legally binding document.
As with any other written agreement, if both parties have signed it, it can be considered binding for both contractual parties.
There are two possibilities if one of the parties did not sign the lease agreement, namely:
If the tenant didn’t sign the lease agreement but offers to pay the rent and lives at the leased property, the lease agreement will be binding for them.
In the event that the landlord doesn’t sign the lease agreement, the lease agreement will still be binding for them if they accept the rent payment from the tenant.
The Indiana lease agreement should have the following outline:
Names and other details of the contractual parties
Description of the leased property
Lease duration and occupancy limit
Rent due, rent amount, and the method of payment
Mandatory disclosures required by federal and state law
Other disclosures provided by the landlord
Rights and duties of the contractual parties
Agreement termination rules
To get your own Indiana lease agreement, visit our website and simply download one of the many templates used for leased property in Indiana.
After drafting and signing the lease agreement, ensure you inspect the leased property properly and check if there should be any cleaning or repairs done.
After the inspection, you should sign the move-in form and exchange the first month’s rent payment and property keys with the other party.