A New Mexico lease agreement is a legally binding document drafted to regulate the terms and conditions of a property lease in New Mexico.
A lease agreement is signed between the landlord or lessor and the tenant or lessee. It provides details about the contractual parties, the leased property, lease duration, rent amount, and other rights and duties of the landlord and the tenant.
The tenant would usually start the process by submitting the rental application. This application contains details about the tenant, their financial report, references from previous landlords, a background report, and other details if necessary.
The landlord would then review the application and determine if the tenant is suitable. If everything is in order, the landlord will invite the tenant to start the negotiation and lease agreement drafting.
New Mexico Lease Agreement Required Disclosures
If you are leasing a property in New Mexico, there are a few clauses required by federal and state laws and regulations that you must include in your lease agreement. Namely:
Lead-based paint disclosure. The landlord must notify the tenant of any lead-based paint hazards at the leased property. This disclosure is required by federal law for any leased property built before 1978. (Section 1018 of Title X)
Identity disclosure. The tenant must disclose the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of the owner and manager of the property or the person authorized to act on their behalf. These details must be disclosed in the lease agreement to receive notifications and demands. (§ 47-8-19)
Late fee disclosure. This disclosure must be included in the lease agreement if the landlord charges a late rent payment fee. It shall contain information about the late fee amount and the conditions under which the tenant needs to pay it. (§ 47-8-15)
New Mexico Lease Agreement Optional Disclosures
Although it is not a required element of the lease agreement, there are a few disclosures that can improve the security of both contractual parties, such as:
Bed bug disclosure. If there is a history of bed bug infestation at the leased property, the landlord shall include this disclosure in the lease agreement. The disclosure shall also contain guidelines on how to prevent bed bug infestation and how to act if it appears.
Medical marijuana use disclosure. The landlord can state whether medical marijuana smoking is permitted at the leased unit. They can also indicate the designated smoking areas.
Move-in checklist. This list will contain details about all the items at the property and their condition before the tenant moves in. The checklist will be compared to the condition of the property when the tenant moves out to determine if there was any damage caused during the tenancy.
Consequences of Non-Disclosure
The tenant can sue the landlord in civil court for any damages caused by the fact that the health and safety risks were not mentioned in the lease agreement.
If the New Mexico lease agreement doesn’t include the lead-based paint disclosure, the landlord can be held liable and pay up to $19,507 in penalties. (24 CFR § 30.65)
New Mexico Lease Agreement Security Deposits
Security Deposit Maximum
If the tenancy is shorter than one year, the security deposit is limited to one month’s rent. When the tenancy is longer, there is no limit to the security deposit. However, in that case, interest must be paid on the amount kept as a security deposit. (§ 47-8-18)
Security Deposit Return
After the tenancy is over, the landlord must return the security deposit to the tenant within 30 days. If any deductions need to be made for the due rent or damage repairs, the landlord must send a list of deductions with the remaining deposit within the same 30-day period. (§ 47-8-18)
The landlord must pay $250 to the tenant for any unlawful retention of the security deposit.
When is Rent Due in New Mexico? (Grace Period)
The date on which the rent is due is written in the lease agreement between the parties. If there is no such date stipulated, the rent is due at the beginning of each month. (§ 47-8-15(B))
The New Mexico statutes don’t provide any mandatory grace period after the rent is due. As soon as the due date is over, the landlord can send a 3-day notice to the tenant, informing them to pay the due rent or vacate the property.
New Mexico Rent Late Fees
The late fee cannot exceed 10% of the monthly rent amount. Additionally, the landlord must disclose in the lease agreement if any late fees are going to be charged in case of a default rent payment. (§ 47-8-15(D))
New Mexico NSF Checks
The worthless check fee in New Mexico is set at $20. (§ 188.8.131.52(A))
Additionally, the tenant must compensate the landlord with the check amount and any other reasonable fee.
New Mexico Landlord’s Right to Enter
The landlord can access the property after giving a 24-hour notice to the tenant stating the reason and estimated time of the visit. In case of an emergency, the landlord can access the property without prior notice.
The landlord can also access the property within 7 days from the moment the tenant requests the repair at the property. They can also gain unrestricted access to the property when accompanying a public official inspecting the property or a representative of a public utility (gas, electricity, etc.). (§ 47-8-24)
New Mexico Lease Agreement FAQ
Yes, the lease agreement is legally binding under New Mexico state law.
Before the tenancy starts, the landlord must provide a copy of the lease agreement to each resident of the leased property.
Once all the parties sign the lease agreement, it is considered fully valid and enforceable against all of them.
When drafting the New Mexico lease agreement, you should include the following elements:
Names and other details of the contractual parties
Details about the leased unit
Maximal occupancy, smoking, and pet policy
Duration of the lease
Rent amount and due date
Late and non-refundable fees (if applicable)
Mandatory disclosures required by federal and state law
Rights and duties of the landlord and the tenant
The best way to get a lease agreement for a property in New Mexico that is also up to date with all the federal and state rules and regulations is to download one of the lease agreement templates available on our website.
The most important step you should take after creating the lease agreement is to inspect the property and make sure there are no repairs or cleaning that need to be done.
If everything is in order, the tenant should pay the first month’s rent and security deposit. The landlord shall allow the tenant to access the property by handing over the keys to it or, in some other way, enabling them to access it.