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  1. #1
    Tom Litton is offline Senior Member
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    Default Do you point key provisions of your rental agreement?

    Canada has an interesting perspective on this issue. In Tilden Rent-A-Car Co. v. Clendenning (1978), 83 DLR (3d) 400, a leading Canadian contract law decision from the Court of Appeal for Ontario, the Court held that a party can only be bound to a signed standard form contract when it is reasonable to believe that they consented to the terms.

    In the Opinion of the Court, Justice Charles Dubin observed that:

    "In modern commercial practice, many standard form printed documents are signed without being read or understood. In many cases the parties seeking to rely upon the terms of the contract know or ought to know that the signature of a party to the contract does not represent the true intention of the signer, and that the party signing is unaware of the stringent and onerous provisions which the standard form contains. Under such circumstances, I am of the opinion that the party seeking to rely on such terms should not be able to do so in the absence of first having taken reasonable measures to draw such terms to the attention of the other party, and, in the absence of such reasonable measures, it is not necessary for the party denying knowledge of such terms to prove either fraud, misrepresentation or non est factum."

    While this principal of contract interpretation is not applicable in U.S. law, it does point out a salient point:

    Should self storage managers/owners point out key rental agreement provisions and make reference to them at the time of rental?

    If so, which provisions do you point out and emphasize?

  2. #2
    Ian M. Johnson's Avatar
    Ian M. Johnson is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Do you point key provisions of your rental agreement?

    We do, mostly to prevent the inevitable "I didn't know that". It's not anything we're doing cover our keesters. We like to think of it as overt customer service.
    Consistency- It's only a virtue if you're not a screwup

  3. #3
    Roger the alien's Avatar
    Roger the alien is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Do you point key provisions of your rental agreement?

    We give them a moment to read over the guidelines on their contract that includes such things as: no storing of hazardous chemical, no living in the unit, responsibility for those you bring onto the property, the things that are most likely to be broken. I personally explain how our company handles liens since a lot of people aren't really aware. When it comes time to sign the contract I ALWAYS ask if they have any questions. Perhaps I should secretly start recording them when they answer that

  4. #4
    delsolrp13 is offline Member
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    Default Re: Do you point key provisions of your rental agreement?

    we do not prorate moveouts, no refunds 10 day written move out notice required then we have them initial by provisions.

  5. #5
    cathysueru is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Do you point key provisions of your rental agreement?

    We have a printed folder that we give to each customer with their copies of the rental agreement. I review the rules and guidelines section of the folder, which are also covered in the rental agreement. Info includes rent due date, no refunds, statement dates, late fees, what to do when they are ready to move out, operator does not provide insurance for stored items, customer provides their own lock, do not store explosives, etc., NSF fees, and trash disposal. Covers the important basics but not as overwhelming as reading thru the (VERY LONG) contract.

  6. #6
    CindyM's Avatar
    CindyM is offline Member
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    Default Re: Do you point key provisions of your rental agreement?

    We go over both the Schedule A and Use Agreement with the tenant and make them initial and sign each document as well as tell them to read it over thoroughly when they get home. I tell them right off the bat that I am giving them the "Cole's Notes" version but it is up to them to read it over, I also ask when I'm finished if there is anything they don't understand and I can go over it again.

    I am in Canada and we have some laws to follow but again, they aren't real stringent.
    I have had people say when charged with a late fee that they didn't know it but their signature is right beside the late fee schedule...so, I take their contract out and go over it with them again so that they know for the next time. There is a different between 15 days and the 15th of the month when rent is due on the aniversary date.

    It does get a little frustrating but we do follow every law to the letter and generally our tenants are pretty good.

  7. #7
    Tom Litton is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Do you point key provisions of your rental agreement?

    You handle that quite well CindyM. I was visiting with my friends at Sentinel Self Storage the other day in Edmonton and they too, were very diligent in pointing out the key provisions of their rental agreement. Canadian law is rock solid on contractural language as long as you point it out at the time of conception. Hey, keep it up!

    P.S. I love your logo!

 

 

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