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We have an agreement for leasing a property in Indianapolis,

Customer Question
We have an agreement...

We have an agreement for leasing a property in Indianapolis, Indiana. We signed the agreement and gave them security deposit before we left as we live in Las Vegas. They now want to amend the agreement and have us sign a new one. Is there someone that can look over the agreement as I feel there is numerous requests that look like they violate Indiana renters laws.

Lawyer's Assistant: Because laws vary from place to place, can you tell me what state the property is in?

Indiana

Lawyer's Assistant: What are the terms of the lease? Any issues related to maintenance or upkeep?

6 month lease. One of the issues is regarding normal wear and tear. They added an amendment and a long list of items that we are responsible for or they can keep my security deposit. one of them is that we have to professionally steam clean the whole house after we move out which is not legal in Indiana because carpet is considered normal wear and tear.

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

Nope. Because of this though I would like the lawyer to review the whole document. It is only 14 pages in 12 pt font.

Submitted: 17 days ago.Category: Landlord-Tenant
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Answered in 8 minutes by:
2/6/2018
Lawyer: Law Educator, Esq., Attorney replied 17 days ago
Law Educator, Esq.
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 121,845
Experience: Attorney with over 24 years experience.
Verified

Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.

If you have a signed agreement, they cannot make you sign any new one until this first agreement expires. So, while they may want to have you sign a new agreement, legally they cannot force you to do so.

Your statement that it is not legal to make you liable to professionally have the carpets steam cleaned upon leaving is not correct. That has nothing to do with ordinary wear and tear, it has to do with cleaning the property upon leaving and a landlord can make you not only professionally clean the carpets they could also make you hire a professional cleaning service to clean the house.

The landlord cannot charge you for damage or replacement of items that are from normal wear and tear, like worn out rugs or old or peeling paint on the walls. That does not mean they cannot make you clean the place.

Also, the Indiana landlord tenant laws have provisions in them that are default provisions, meaning they apply unless the landlord and tenant agree to other terms in their lease, which is obviously what they are trying to do here.

However, because you have a 6 month lease, they cannot force you to sign a new one and have to honor what you signed until that 6 month lease is up.

Please do not forget to leave positive feedback by clicking on the 5 stars at the top of your page, as the experts are not employees of the site and get no credit for spending time with customers unless they leave positive feedback. Thank you.

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Customer reply replied 17 days ago
Here is the issue. We signed through docusign and received a copy with our signatures but no there signature.
Lawyer: Law Educator, Esq., Attorney replied 17 days ago

Thank you for your reply.

It does not matter, once you signed by docusign, you signed it according to federal law. So the contract is valid regardless of what the landlord wants you to now do. Again, you do not have to sign the new lease and inform the landlord you already have a 6 month contract and that is the contract you plan to enforce.

Quite frankly, the lease is a fairly standard lease and even though the clause about you maintaining the home and fixtures and making repairs is a clause typically found in a commercial lease, they can put it in a residential lease which would change the default landlord tenant laws. It is not prohibited though and if you sign such a lease it is binding.

If you plan on being in Fishers only for 6 months and do not plan on staying there any longer than that or plan on moving to another house, I would not consider signing such a lease amendment and I would insist on enforcing the lease you signed already.

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