If you’re planning to rent a property in Massachusetts, you might come across a rental agreement with the words “tenant at will rental agreement.” But what exactly is it, and how does it differ from other rental agreements like a fixed-term lease?

A tenant at will rental agreement is an agreement between the landlord and tenant that allows the tenant to occupy an apartment or house on a month-to-month basis. It is different from a fixed-term lease in that it doesn’t have a set end date and can be terminated by either party with proper notice.

Under the Massachusetts General Laws, a tenant at will rental agreement is considered a legal agreement and is enforceable by law. However, because there is no fixed end date, landlords and tenants should be aware of the special provisions and responsibilities that come with this arrangement.

One important aspect of tenant at will rental agreements is that the landlord must give the tenant proper notice before terminating the agreement. In Massachusetts, the required notice period is typically 30 days, although it can be longer in certain circumstances. On the other hand, a tenant can end the agreement with less notice, typically 7 days.

Another key consideration is the rent increase process. In Massachusetts, landlords must give tenants a written notice of any rent increase at least 30 days before the new amount is due. If the tenant does not agree to the increase, they can end the agreement by providing the required notice.

It’s important to note that although tenant at will rental agreements offer flexibility, they can also be less stable than fixed-term leases. Because either party can terminate the agreement with proper notice, there is always the possibility of sudden changes in housing. That being said, it can be a good option for those who need a short-term rental or who may need to relocate in the near future.

If you’re considering signing a tenant at will rental agreement in Massachusetts, make sure to read and understand the terms of the agreement fully. Be aware of your rights and responsibilities as a tenant or landlord, and make sure to communicate openly and clearly throughout the rental period.