A storage space lease agreement is a legally binding document between landlords and renters. It is necessary when the parties want to store objects in a commercial storage facility. The lease agreement for a storage unit specifies what objects it will hold, as well as the rates and costs. Edit this template on Lawrina in minutes and get a complete PDF document on your device or inbox.
A storage space lease agreement is a legally binding and enforceable contract between a storage facility owner and a tenant for the use of a storage unit. As a written agreement, its main objective is to document the information that constitutes the engagement between the two parties regarding storage units for lease. For example, the storage space lease agreement ensures that the landlord cannot unilaterally increase the rent payable and that the tenants cannot vacate storage units without following the procedure outlined in the lease agreement. A comprehensive storage space lease agreement template contains clauses that address rent payment terms, types of items the tenant may store in the unit, prohibited items, the tenant’s access to the facility, liability, and any insurance requirements.
What Is a Storage Unit Lease Agreement?
A storage space lease agreement is an agreement between a lessee and a lessor that outlines the rules relevant to the parties’ arrangement. A storage space offers a safe and secure place — a storage unit, a barn, a garage, or any open or enclosed area fit for the purpose — for the lessee to store goods that he or she cannot otherwise keep at home.
The storage space lease agreement articulates the terms of the engagement, including the rules and responsibilities of each party. Working with a carefully drafted storage space lease agreement template can help to ensure that both parties have sufficient legal protection over the lease term. A detailed storage space lease agreement also provides transparency between the parties, clarifies essential aspects of the engagement, and aligns to relevant state and federal law.
Parties of the Storage Space Lease Agreement
A storage space lease agreement is a binding document between two parties whose rights and responsibilities pertaining to the lease of a storage unit are articulated in the agreement. The parties are as follows:
Lessor — Also called the warehouse or facility owner, the lessor to a storage space lease agreement is the party who owns the storage facility that is available for rent; and
Lessee — The lessee of a storage space lease agreement is the party who agrees to rent the storage space for a regular fee.
In most cases, the lessor prepares the storage space lease agreement after the lessee agrees to the terms. The renter may have little say regarding the provisions and the responsibilities assigned in the storage space lease agreement. However, prudent storage facility owners usually take the time to explain the terms to the lessee and secure their consensus and commitment to observe the requirements of the storage space lease agreement.
The language in contracts is often complex. The following are some of the most complicated clauses, words, or phrases found in a storage space lease agreement template:
Rent abatement clause — This clause provides that, during significant repairs or in the aftermath of major natural disasters that undermine the stability of a unit, the lessor agrees to charge a reduced rent or cancel the rent due.
Force majeure — This clause is included to address any event (natural disasters or government actions) that interferes with the capacity of the parties to fulfill their obligations under the storage space lease agreement.
Subrogation — If an insurance company pays for the damage to goods in a storage facility, the agreement’s subrogation clause allows the company to pursue compensation from the individual or entity at fault.
Permitted use — This clause outlines the specific use allowed in the storage facility, which will differ depending on the type of unit.
Right of first refusal — In a storage space lease agreement, this clause may be included to give the tenant the right to lease additional storage space as it becomes available before the facility owner offers it to others.
Apart from these legal phrases, a storage space lease agreement is usually straightforward. However, should you find something in the document that you need help understanding, consider discussing those provisions with a local attorney.
What Is Included in a Storage Space Rental Agreement?
Specific provisions must be included in a storage space lease agreement template to make it legally sound. These include the following:
Description of the parties — Clearly describe the parties in the agreement by providing their legal names and addresses. The storage space lease agreement should also contain a description of the nature of the storage space being made available to the lessee, including the storage unit number and location as applicable.
Terms — Articulate the duration of the rental period, providing specific start and end dates to avoid misunderstandings and conflict. Also note that both parties agree that the storage space is being leased “as is” to limit liability for any pre-existing issues.
Rent — Indicate the exact rent amount and payment frequency (usually monthly), including any applicable fees for late or returned payments.
Security deposit — If applicable, specify the amount that the lessee shall pay as security for the performance of the terms under the agreement and to cover any damages caused directly by the lessee, a family member, agent, or associate.
Use of premises — Describe the permitted uses of the storage unit, indicating items that the lessee may not store and noting that the unit cannot be used as a dwelling or a place of business.
Maintenance and repairs — State that the lessee is responsible for repairing any damages that may occur to the unit beyond normal wear and tear.
Insurance covering lessee’s possessions — Ensure that the lessee understands that he or she carries the sole liability for all property placed in the unit and is, therefore, responsible for securing the necessary insurance to cover the stored goods.
Landlord’s right to enter — Include in the storage space lease agreement the prerogative of the landlord and any government authorities, such as the police or fire officials, to enter the premises. The contract must grant permission to enter with advance written notice for non-emergency situations and without notice to enforce the landlord’s rights and protect the welfare of others or stored property.
Superseding agreement clause — State that the storage space lease agreement supersedes any prior written or oral agreements between the parties.
Severability clause — Indicate in a severability clause that if any section of the agreement is found invalid or unenforceable, it will be severed from the rest, which will remain valid and enforceable.
Termination — Outline the conditions under which either party can terminate the agreement, indicating that the agreement shall remain in full effect unless canceled by either party according to this provision. Also note that each party may revoke the agreement upon written notice to the other party.
Governing law — Specify in the storage space lease agreement that matters concerning the interpretation and implementation of the lease shall be addressed according to applicable state law.
How To Write a Storage Rental Agreement
A free printable simple storage agreement template can be used to establish a mutual understanding between the lessor and the lessee. Ensure that the lessee agrees to the rental contract terms by following the steps below.
Establish a Payment Plan
A well-written storage space lease agreement template will have space to indicate the payment plan. Discuss the rent amount, frequency of payment, and any applicable fees with the lessee. Be sure to specify the exact days when the rent will become due and establish penalties for late payments if necessary. Most importantly, ensure that the lessee understands all obligations regarding payment, and be sure those obligations are clearly stated in the storage space lease agreement.
State the Rules
Before signing a storage space lease agreement, explain the rules that guide the use of the premises during the term of the lease. The following should be clearly stated in the contract:
Security measures — Communicate any potential security measures that the lessee must observe, such as access codes, hours of operation, or other relevant information.
Alterations and repair for damages — Discuss the extent to which the lessee can alter the premises, if any, to make the space more accommodating. Further, confirm what damages the lessee will be responsible for paying and that the lessee agrees to pay for such damages prior to retrieving his or her property.
Subleasing — Inform the lessee of any circumstances under which subleasing is allowed or if subleasing is strictly prohibited.
Cancellation — Set clear expectations of what the lessee should do upon cancellation of the storage rental agreement. In the contract, make it clear that the lessor never assumes responsibility for the items in storage and gives the lessee a specified amount of time to remove his or her property from the storage unit after termination of the contract.
Clarify the Terms
Agree on the terms of the storage space lease agreement, especially on details such as the start and end date of the arrangement. Further, specify whether the contract is for a fixed term or month to month. Discuss the process for renewing the storage space lease agreement and any notice periods for termination.
Review the Limitations
A storage space lease agreement must include a section to articulate the limitation of use. These rules establish the facility’s safety and security for other renters, protect the lessor’s rights, and facilitate compliance with state law. Examples of possible restrictions to impose include:
Usage restrictions — Ensure that the lessee acknowledges that the unit should only be used for the storage of personal property, excluding perishable goods, flammable items, hazardous chemicals, live animals, and illegal substances.
Late charges — Include charges for late payments or defaults in the agreement forms.
Care of the premises — Include in the storage space lease agreement a clause that prohibits the lessee from undertaking activities that would damage the building. Also emphasize that the property inside the unit is the sole responsibility of the lessee.
Alterations — State the extent to which the tenant is allowed to make structural or permanent alterations to the premises.
Total value of stored items — Set a limit in the lease agreement for the full value of stored items as desired for a risk mitigation strategy. Minimally, specify in the storage space lease agreement that the lessor hereby is released from any liability arising from storing goods.
When To Use a Storage Space Lease Agreement
A storage space lease agreement outlines how the lessee should use the premises and lists any prohibited activities. The agreement is an essential document for each party when one party is renting a storage facility. By signing the storage space lease agreement, both parties are hereby agreeing to be bound by the terms of the contract.
Common Use Cases
If you are a storage facility owner, you can use a storage space lease agreement sample to create a legal contract for the rental of a storage unit for long-term or short-term uses.
Other businesses can use a storage space lease agreement if they offer storage services incidental to their core activities. Such companies may include:
Galleries — Art galleries generally use lease agreements for artists who want to store their artwork in the gallery storage space.
Seasonal equipment storage — If you offer seasonal services like winter sports activities, you may consider using a lease agreement to offer seasonal equipment storage for snowmobiles, ski and snowboard equipment, or recreational vehicles like RVs, campers, and trailers.
Business partnerships — Business partners with a partnership agreement may decide on the use of the storage space for their inventory and, therefore, use a rental agreement.
When Not To Use the Storage Space Lease Agreement
Certain circumstances do not call for a signed storage space lease agreement. They include the following:
Informal arrangements with family or friends — When making informal arrangements with a friend or family member to store some of their goods, you do not need a storage space lease agreement.
Short-term storage use — Hourly or overnight short-term storage needs may not require an official lease agreement. In such situations, a simple invoice or receipt acknowledging the items in storage and the terms of storage should suffice.
Long-term rentals — For long-term rentals that will span several years, a commercial lease agreement with longer terms is more appropriate than a monthly rent contract.
DIY storage units — If you run a simple DIY storage unit, such as lockers, simple terms and conditions will be sufficient versus using an official self storage rental agreement PDF document.
Free storage — A lease agreement is unnecessary for businesses that offer free storage as part of a more extensive service within a place of business.
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Frequently Asked Questions
How is self-storage different from full-service storage?
The type of storage will be defined clearly in the storage space lease agreement. A self-storage service differs from full-service storage on three main fronts — affordability, flexibility, and DIY. Because of the scope of the service offered, self-storage is often more affordable. The lessee gets a dedicated storage space to access anytime on a DIY (do it yourself) basis to pack, move, or organize belongings as needed. With full-service storage, the lessee may get transportation, packing, and organizing services as part of the arrangement. Full-service storage is more expensive, and the lessee must coordinate with the service provider to access or retrieve his or her belongings.
Can a storage facility sell my stuff?
There are circumstances in which a facility owner can sell a lessee’s stuff, such as when the lessee violates the terms of the storage space lease agreement. This is usually done after the lessee fails to pay the monthly payments as agreed or causes damage to the unit. The lessor can sell the property within the constraints of state law, generally at auction with notice to the lessee.
Can someone live in a storage unit?
Living in a storage unit for lease is strictly prohibited. The storage space lease agreement will state that units are only to be used for storage purposes. According to state law, lessees may not live in units or use them for any other purpose than to store permitted property. Violation of the terms of an agreement can result in eviction, fines, and even imprisonment.