A Michigan lease agreement is a legal document created to protect the rights and define the duties of the landlord (lessor) and the tenant (lessee).
The main obligation of the landlord is to enable the tenant to use the leased property. On the other hand, the tenant's main obligation is to pay the rent to the landlord before the due date provided in the lease agreement.
To ensure each party will fulfill its obligation, they choose to sign a lease agreement.
However, the tenant must fulfill a few steps before starting the lease agreement drafting procedure with the landlord. They will first submit the application to the landlord with all the financial details and background reports.
If the tenant seems suitable, the landlord will invite them to start drafting the lease agreement.
Michigan Lease Agreement Required Disclosures
There are five mandatory disclosures every lease agreement in Michigan must include. One is deemed required by federal law, while the four of them are the Michigan state law requirement.
Lead-based paint disclosure. This disclosure is required for any leased unit built before 1978. The landlord will inform the tenant of any lead-based paint hazards at the property. (Section 1018 of Title X)
Domestic violence victim disclosure. The landlord must include the following notice to be included in the lease agreement, posted at the property or handed over to the tenant:
“A tenant who has a reasonable apprehension of present danger to him or her or his or her child from domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking may have special statutory rights to seek a release of rental obligation under MCL 554.601b.”
Property owner and manager disclosure. A person signing the lease agreement as the landlord must include the names and addresses of the property manager and owner in the lease agreement. This disclosure will inform the tenant of the persons authorized to receive notices and requests. (§ 554.634)
Move-in checklist. Michigan statute requires the landlord to provide a move-in checklist to the tenant before the start of the lease. The tenant will then have 7 days to complete the list, mention any existing damages at the property, sign, and return the list to the landlord. (§ 554.608)
Truth in Renting Act. The following notice has to be included in every lease agreement in 12-point font and be at least ⅛ inch in height:
“NOTICE: Michigan law establishes rights and obligations for parties to rental agreements. This agreement is required to comply with the Truth in Renting Act. If you have a question about the interpretation or legality of a provision of this agreement, you may want to seek assistance from a lawyer or other qualified person” (§ 554.634)
Michigan Lease Agreement Optional Disclosures
Many safety and health hazards that should be disclosed in the lease agreement are not set forth as required in the state of Michigan. Regardless, many contractual parties include them in their lease agreements in order to prevent their legal liability.
Mold disclosure. The landlord shall inform the tenant of the mold status at the property and provide guidelines in case the mold appears. This will make any future damage claims much easier to resolve.
Medical marijuana usage disclosure. This disclosure will inform the tenant if smoking medical marijuana is permitted at the property. In some states, landlords are allowed to limit the usage of medical marijuana only to non-smoking methods. The landlord can also inform the tenant of any designated smoking areas.
Consequences of Non-Disclosure
Suppose tenant suffers any damages caused by the health and safety hazards not properly disclosed by the landlord. In that case, the tenant can file a civil lawsuit against the landlord and ask for compensation.
If the landlord doesn’t include the lead-based paint disclosure in the lease agreement, they can be fined up to $19,507. (24 CFR § 30.65)
Michigan Lease Agreement Security Deposits
Security Deposit Maximum
Michigan law limits the security deposit to no more than one and a half months’ rent. (§ 554.602) Additionally, the landlord must inform the tenant about the account number and the institution name where the security deposit is being kept.
Security Deposit Return
The landlord must return the security deposit to the tenant within 30 days of the lease termination. If any deduction needs to be made, an itemized list of deductions has to be sent to the tenant within the same deadline, as well as the remaining deposit. (§ 554.609)
When is Rent Due in Michigan? (Grace Period)
The due date for the rent payment is, in most cases, provided in the lease agreement by the landlord and the tenant.
The state of Michigan doesn’t provide a grace period for the rent payment. That means that any late fees can be charged after the due date. The landlord can also start the eviction procedure after sending the 7-day notice to the tenant.
Michigan Rent Late Fees
The landlord can charge any late fee they deem reasonable since the state of Michigan doesn’t set a maximum late fee that can be charged. However, the landlord must disclose any late fee in the lease agreement before the start of the lease.
Michigan NSF Checks
If the tenant used a bad check to pay for the rent, the landlord can ask for compensation that includes the check's value plus up to a $25 processing fee if the check is repaid within 7 days. If the check is repaid within 30 days, the fee cannot exceed $35. (§ 600.2952)
Michigan Landlord’s Right to Enter
The landlord can access the leased property to do the necessary repairs and maintenance after giving reasonable notice. Although a reasonable notice is not defined by state law, a 24-hour notice would be considered reasonable in most cases.
Michigan Lease Agreement FAQ
Yes, the lease agreement is considered a legally binding contract in Michigan.
Both oral and written lease agreements are considered binding in Michigan. However, the written lease agreement offers better protection to the parties since all the clauses are properly provided in the lease agreement text and both parties have a copy of it.
Typically, a Michigan lease agreement should include the following:
Information about the contractual parties
Details about the leased property
Lease duration and rules for the extension of the lease
Rent amount, due date, and methods of payment
Mandatory disclosures required by federal and Michigan state law
Optional disclosures provided by the parties
Rights and duties of the landlord and the tenant
Lease agreement termination rules
You can download one of the lease agreement templates available on our website.
Based on the type of your lease, you can choose between many types of lease agreements:
Residential and commercial lease agreement
Long-term lease agreement and month-to-month lease agreement.
Room rental agreement
Rent-to-own lease agreement
After drafting and signing the lease agreement, make sure you do the property inspection.
By doing the property inspection, you will ensure there are no existing damages or cleaning needed before the tenancy starts.
After the inspection, do the following:
Sign the move-in form.
Pay the first month’s rent and security deposit (if you are the tenant).
Hand over the keys and enable access to the property (if you are the landlord).