Rental Agreement

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    Rental Agreement


    A rent agreement constitutes a legally binding contract established between the property owner (landlord) and the individual seeking to inhabit the premises (tenant). Despite often being overlooked, it stands as a crucial legal document deserving of careful consideration.

    The rental agreement stands as a pivotal legal contract encompassing all details, terms, conditions, and provisions pertinent to leasing a property. It covers aspects such as security deposits, monthly rental fees, property specifications (size, address, type), and the duration of the agreement. It’s imperative to meticulously review the agreement, its rules, and clauses before appending your signature.

    For many individuals navigating property rentals, the journey often encounters rough patches, leading to potential friction between tenants and landlords. Hence, it’s crucial to collaboratively craft the rental agreement to preempt any future conflicts.

    As per the Registration Act of 1908, registering a rental agreement becomes paramount if the lease duration exceeds 12 months. This document serves as a safeguard for both the landlord and the tenant, shielding the former from unwarranted claims and ensuring the latter’s protection against any illegitimate demands.


    Rental agreements provide a clear and comprehensive understanding of the terms and conditions of the rental arrangement. They can help prevent misunderstandings and conflicts between the landlord and tenant. Rental agreements can also help protect the landlord’s property and ensure that the tenant uses it responsibly.

    Convenience: Online registration offers unparalleled convenience as it allows landlords and tenants to complete the registration process from anywhere with an internet connection. This eliminates the need for physical visits to government offices, saving time and effort.

    Time-Saving: Online registration significantly reduces the time required for document submission, verification, and approval. Unlike traditional methods that involve long waiting times and multiple trips to government offices, online registration expedites the process, enabling swift completion of formalities.

    Reduced Administrative Hassles: By digitizing the registration process, online platforms minimize paperwork and manual record-keeping. This not only reduces the likelihood of errors but also simplifies the overall procedure, making it more user-friendly for both landlords and tenants.

    Transparency: Online platforms provide clear guidelines and instructions for registering a rent agreement, ensuring that all parties understand the necessary steps and requirements. This transparency fosters trust and confidence in the online registration process.

    Document Security: Online registration platforms prioritize the security of sensitive information and documents. Through the implementation of secure encryption and authentication measures, they protect against unauthorized access, tampering, or loss of documents, safeguarding the integrity of the rental agreement.

    Verification: Online registration involves thorough verification of the information provided by both parties. This verification process helps authenticate the identity of the landlord and tenant, as well as validate the property details and terms of the agreement, reducing the risk of fraudulent transactions.

    Remote Access: One of the significant advantages of online registration is the ability for all parties involved to access and review the agreement remotely. This is particularly beneficial if the landlord or tenant is located in a different city or country, allowing for seamless collaboration and communication throughout the registration process.

    Legal Validity: Online registered rent agreements hold the same legal validity as traditional agreements registered offline. They are recognized and enforceable by law, providing both landlords and tenants with legal protection and recourse in the event of disputes or breaches of contract.

    Electronic Copies: Online registration platforms often offer the option to download and print electronic copies of the registered agreement. This enables landlords and tenants to maintain digital records for their reference, ensuring easy access to important documents whenever needed.


    To create a rental agreement, you need to identify the landlord and tenant, specify the rental property, and define the rental terms and conditions. The rental terms and conditions should cover the rent amount, payment schedule, security deposit, utilities, maintenance responsibilities, and any other relevant provisions.

    Documents Required:

    The documents required to create a rental agreement typically include identification documents for both the landlord and tenant, proof of ownership of the rental property, and any relevant legal documents such as permits and licenses.

    Following is the list of important documents required in the registration of a rental agreement in India:

    Proof of Ownership: The landlord must provide original documents demonstrating ownership or title of the property. This could include a sale deed, lease deed, or any other legal document establishing the landlord as the rightful owner.

    Property Documents: Supporting documents such as Index II or tax receipts related to the property being leased are necessary for registration.

    Photographs: Two photographs of each party involved in the agreement (landlord and tenant) and one photograph of each witness are required.

    Address Proof: Both parties and witnesses must furnish copies of their address proofs. Acceptable documents include passport, Aadhaar card, ration card, bank passbook, or driving license.

    Route Map: A route map indicating the location of the leased property is typically required for registration purposes.

    Stamp Paper: The rental agreement must be printed on stamp paper of appropriate value. The stamp duty amount varies from state to state and can be verified on the Ministry of Finance website.

    Registration Fees: A registration fee is payable at the sub-registrar’s office, the amount of which varies depending on the state.


    Following is the process of preparing and registering a rent agreement in India:

    Drafting the Agreement: The first step involves creating a comprehensive rent agreement outlining all terms and conditions. This includes details such as the names of the landlord and tenant, property address, monthly rent amount, security deposit, duration of the lease, rights and responsibilities of both parties, clauses for renewal or termination, maintenance responsibilities, and any other specific provisions deemed necessary.

    Stamp Paper: Once the agreement is finalized, it needs to be printed on stamp paper. The value of the stamp paper varies depending on the state in which the property is located and the rental amount. It’s crucial to use the appropriate denomination of stamp paper as per local regulations.

    Signing the Agreement: After printing the agreement on stamp paper, both the tenant and landlord must sign it in the designated spaces. This signifies their acceptance and agreement to abide by the terms outlined in the document.

    Visit to Sub-Registrar’s Office: With the signed agreement in hand, both parties need to visit the sub-registrar’s office in the relevant jurisdiction. This step is essential for registering the rent agreement.

    Documentation: During the visit to the sub-registrar’s office, both the tenant and landlord must carry copies of their passport-size photographs and valid ID cards for individual verification. This is a standard procedure to confirm the identities of the parties involved.

    Payment of Stamp Duty: At the sub-registrar’s office, the stamp duty for the rent agreement must be paid. The stamp duty is calculated based on the rental amount and the duration of the lease. Once the stamp duty is paid, the registration process can proceed.

    Registration: After payment of the stamp duty, the rent agreement is registered with the sub-registrar. The registration process involves the official recording of the agreement, making it legally valid and enforceable.

    Receipt of Registered Agreement: Upon successful registration, the sub-registrar provides a registered copy of the rent agreement. This document serves as proof of the legal registration of the agreement and should be retained by both parties for future reference.

    Notarization for Shorter Tenures: For rent agreements with durations of less than a year (typically less than 11 months), notarization by a public notary along with stamp duty is sufficient for credibility. This is an alternative to the full registration process required for longer tenures.

    Follow the given steps to ensure the execution of a valid rental agreement:

    Registration for Long-term Agreements: According to the Registration Act of 1908, rental agreements lasting more than 12 months must be registered. However, for agreements shorter than 12 or 11 months, registration is optional. In such cases, writing and signing the agreement on stamped paper is legally sufficient.

    Rental Agreements for Shorter Durations: If the agreement spans less than one year, it should be printed on stamp paper obtained from the sub-registrar’s office in the property’s location. Both the landlord and tenant must sign at the bottom of each page of the stamped paper. Additionally, two witnesses must sign the agreement for legal validity.

    Rental Agreements for 12 Months or Longer: For agreements extending 12 months or more, they must be printed on stamp paper and registered with the sub-registrar’s office in the property’s region. Similarly, both parties should sign at the bottom of each page of the stamped paper in the presence of the registrar. Furthermore, two witnesses must sign the stamp paper, and it should be registered upon completion of the necessary payments.

    Cost of a Rental Agreement

    The cost of a rent agreement in India can vary based on factors such as the state, city, property type, and duration of the agreement. Generally, it comprises two main expenses:

    Stamp Duty: This is a government tax levied on legal documents, including rent agreements. Stamp duty rates differ across states but typically range between 0.5% and 2% of the annual rent.

    Registration Charges: These fees are imposed by the government for officially registering a rent agreement. The charges vary by state but usually fall within the range of Rs. 500 to Rs. 1000.

    Regarding the difference between a lease and a rent agreement, the primary distinction lies in the duration covered by the contract. Rent agreements typically span shorter periods, such as a month, 6 months, or 12 months, while lease contracts cover longer durations, sometimes up to 99 years. Both agreements include similar elements like specifying the security deposit, rental amount, utility and maintenance responsibilities, rules of usage, and allowances for pets.

    An 11-month rental agreement format typically outlines all agreed-upon terms and conditions. It includes details such as the parties involved, execution date, tenant and landlord particulars, agreed rent, property usage purpose, and notice periods for both parties to vacate the premises. This format ensures clarity and mutual understanding of the agreement’s terms.

    Rent Hike Process and Limitations

    Rent hikes are commonplace in the Indian rental market, but they are subject to certain limitations. Landlords possess the right to increase rent after the lease period ends, but must adhere to specific guidelines:

    Legal Limitations: According to the Rent Control Act, landlords cannot arbitrarily increase rent. The maximum allowable increase is 10% of the current rent. Additional charges may be levied for repairs or renovations to the property.

    Notice Period: Landlords are required to provide tenants with a 30-day written notice before implementing a rent increase. This notice must specify the new rent amount.

    Negotiation: Tenants have the option to negotiate with the landlord if they are unwilling to pay the increased rent. If an agreement cannot be reached, the tenant may choose to vacate the property.

    Market Trends: While landlords can adjust rent in response to market fluctuations, they are prohibited from doing so during the lease period.

    Following are the steps you have to follow for a rent hike:

    Familiarize Yourself with Rent Control Laws: Begin by consulting the Rent Control Act applicable to your region. Understanding the legal framework governing rent hikes is crucial to ensure compliance and avoid potential disputes with tenants.

    Determine the New Rent Amount and Notice Period: Once you’ve reviewed the relevant regulations, decide on the new rent amount. Take into account any limitations imposed by the Rent Control Act, such as the maximum allowable increase. Additionally, determine the notice period required to inform tenants about the rent hike. This period is typically stipulated by law and may vary depending on your location.

    Notify the Tenant in Writing: Prepare a formal written notice informing the tenant of the proposed rent increase. Clearly state the new rent amount, effective date of the increase, and the duration of the notice period. Provide detailed reasoning for the rent hike, such as inflationary pressures or property maintenance costs, to justify the adjustment.

    Serve the Notice to the Tenant: Deliver the written notice to the tenant within the specified notice period. Ensure that the notice is delivered in accordance with legal requirements, such as through registered mail or in person with a signed acknowledgment of receipt.

    Be Open to Negotiation: Upon receiving the notice, tenants may express concerns or objections regarding the proposed rent hike. Be prepared to engage in constructive dialogue and negotiate with the tenant to reach a mutually acceptable agreement. Consider factors such as the tenant’s financial situation, market conditions, and the condition of the rental property when discussing the rent increase.

    Document Agreements Reached: If both parties agree to the proposed rent hike or negotiate alternative terms, document the agreed-upon changes in writing. This may involve drafting a revised rental agreement or lease addendum outlining the updated rental terms, including the new rent amount and any other relevant provisions.

    Comply with Legal Requirements: Throughout the rent hike process, ensure compliance with all applicable legal requirements, including those outlined in the Rent Control Act and other relevant regulations. Adhering to legal standards helps protect both landlords’ and tenants’ rights and prevents potential disputes or legal issues in the future.

    Difference between Registered and Notarised Rent Agreement

    Aspect Registered Rent Agreement Notarised Rent Agreement
    Process Signed by both parties, then submitted to the Government’s Registrar’s Office for registration. Attested by a public notary to verify the identities of both parties.
    Authority Conducted by the office of the Sub Registrar for the specific area. Conducted by a public notary.
    Presence of Parties Both landlord and tenant must be present during the execution. Both landlord and tenant must be present during the execution.
    Document Access Becomes a public document accessible for legal procedures. Not a public document, access is limited to involved parties.
    Notary’s Role A public notary’s involvement is not required. A public notary attests to the identities of the parties.
    Notary’s Verification Not applicable. A notary verifies identities, not the entire contract.
    Notary’s Stamp/Seal Not applicable. The notary provides a stamp, seal, and signature on the last page.
    Legal Validity Has legal validity due to registration with the government. Has legal validity, but is limited to notarisation verification.

    • A rental agreement is typically used for short-term rentals, while a lease agreement is used for long-term rentals.

    • In most cases, a landlord cannot increase the rent during the rental period unless specified in the rental agreement.

    • If the tenant breaks the rental agreement, the landlord may take legal action and potentially evict the tenant. The rental agreement should outline the consequences of breaking the agreement.

    • The length of a rental agreement can vary depending on the rental period. Short-term rental agreements may be a few months, while long-term rental agreements may be a year or more.

    • The requirement for registration of rental agreements varies by location and duration. In India, for example, rental agreements with a term of more than 12 months typically need to be registered under the Registration Act.

    • Tenants typically require the landlord's permission to make alterations to the rental property. Any alterations made without consent may be considered a breach of the rental agreement.

    Rental Agreement