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Landlord Tip: Here's a powerful lease clause that will help you hold a cotenant liable for the rent and other obligations

Lease Clause: Joint And Several Liability

An important lease clause that you should not miss including in your lease form is Joint and Several Liability. This clause is applicable if there are two or more tenants living in the same unit. Each tenant is jointly and individually responsible for their meeting their duties as renters. 

This lease clause will enable you to view your tenants as one entity. Therefore, you are free to collect monthly rent and give an advanced notice to any one of the tenants living in the same unit without having to deal with everyone in the group. 

There are certain situations where this lease clause will come in handy. One common situation is when a cotenant leaves the unit without your knowledge. You don't have to go through the trouble of looking for this "missing" tenant because the remaining tenants are still obliged to pay you the full rent regardless of who is present or not. Another scenario is when a tenant has brought a pet with him and this pet caused damage to your property. Even if that tenant did not contribute to the security deposit, you still have the right to use the security deposit of his roommates for the damage he has made. 

A lot of tenants are confused about this lease clause. Make sure that you provide a clear explanation so they will immediately realize that they can be held liable for any damage or error caused by any of his roommates. 

You can state in your lease, "Each Tenant(s) is jointly and severally liable for all Lease Agreement obligations."

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