Property Management Blog

Rental Documents Landlords Need

System - Thursday, February 1, 2024
Property Management Blog

Owning a rental property comes with great benefits along with some challenges. In addition to keeping their property in good condition and their tenants happy, landlords have to deal with tons of paperwork, from financial reports to lease agreements.

Keeping all your important rental documents on file can help you comply with your local landlord-tenant laws and even make filing taxes more simple. Moreover, it can help you keep yourself and your investment protected in case of a legal dispute.

To help you stay more organized, the experts at SGI Property Management Dallas have written this guide! Keep reading which are the 13 documents landlords must always keep on file.

Necessary Rental Documents Landlords Should Have on File

1. Rental Application Form

Rental applications allow you to collect important information from prospective tenants, including personal details, rental history, employment information, and references. It’s important to keep rental applications on file because they will come in handy when screening tenants

Even after the selection, you should store applications for some time to stay compliant with the Fair Housing Act in case an applicant inquires about your selection process.

2. Lease Agreement

A lease agreement outlines the terms and conditions of the rental arrangement between you and your tenants. A good lease should include information such as rent amount, lease duration, security deposit details, and rules regarding property use. 


By keeping this legally binding document on file, you can ensure that your tenants comply with the terms of the lease throughout their occupancy.

3. Property Inspection Report

Regular inspections go a long way in maintaining the value and condition of your rental property. To make the most out of every inspection, you should make a detailed inspection report every time. 

It should include details about existing damages, repairs needed, and the overall state of the property. This report will help you assess any changes in the property's condition over time and resolve disputes regarding security deposit deductions.

4. Security Deposit Receipt

As a landlord, it’s your right to collect a security deposit before tenants move in. However, this also comes with several responsibilities, such as informing tenants how you’ll be storing their deposits. 

To avoid issues in the future, it’s best to send tenants a receipt with details such as the amount paid, the date of payment, and the purpose of the deposit. By keeping this document on file, you can prevent potential disputes regarding deposit refunds.

5. Notice to Enter Premises

Due to the implicit covenant of quiet enjoyment, you aren’t allowed to enter your rental property without informing tenants beforehand. So, whenever you need to visit your property, you must send your renters a formal notice. 


Moreover, you must keep a copy of the notice to prove that you’re respecting your tenants' privacy rights at all times.

6. Rent Receipts

Rent receipts allow you to keep track of rent payments and other fees, making the rent collection process easier. Moreover, maintaining accurate rent receipts allows you to track your finances and provide tenants with proof of payment if needed.

7. Late Payment Notice

Along with the rent receipts, it’s also important to have a process for when tenants are late with rent. Late payment notices are a great way to ensure tenants pay the late rent or the amount due. 

Just make sure to specify the amount due, the deadline for payment, and any applicable penalties. And don’t forget to keep the notice on file, as it can help as proof when evicting a tenant for nonpayment of rent. 

8. Tenant Welcome Packet

A tenant welcome packet contains essential information for new tenants, including contact details, emergency procedures, maintenance protocols, and community rules. 

Providing this packet helps tenants adapt to their new living environment and ensures they have access to important resources and support during their tenancy. Keeping a copy on file can come in handy when receiving new tenants.


9. Maintenance Request Form

As a landlord, it’s your responsibility to keep your property in safe and sanitary conditions. This includes addressing maintenance and repair requests promptly. Having a standardized request system will help you ensure a timely response in such situations. 

10. Property Insurance Policy

Even with regular property inspections, your rental will never be fully protected from property damage, theft, natural disasters, or liability claims. That’s why you should consider investing in a property insurance policy. 

By storing a copy of your insurance policy, you can rest easy knowing your investment will always be protected!

11. Mandatory Disclosures

As a landlord, you are required to make mandatory disclosures to tenants before signing the lease. In Texas, these mandatory disclosures include:

  • Disclosing whether there are concentrations of lead paint on the property.

  • Providing tenants with the name and contact information of all parties involved in managing the rental unit. 

  • Disclosing a tenant's right to repair and deduct if repairs are not addressed promptly.

  • Disclosing any parking rules or restrictions for the property.

  • Disclosing any late fees that might be charged.

  • Providing tenants with a 24-hour emergency phone number.

12. Utility Information Sheet

A utility information sheet provides tenants with essential details about utility services for the rental property. It also includes contact information for utility providers, instructions for setting up or transferring utilities, and any relevant billing arrangements. 


Having this document can help you solve many potential complaints or misunderstandings.

13. Eviction Notices

If there is a need to evict tenants, you must follow your local eviction process and keep copies of important documents such as the original eviction notice. Doing this will help you ensure that the case will be solved effectively, and problematic tenants will be removed from your property.

Bottom Line

As a landlord, you’ll find yourself dealing with tons of paperwork, from rental applications to maintenance requests and rent receipts. Keeping important documents will help you keep your investment protected from liabilities. 

Need help managing your Dallas rental property? Contact SGI Property Management Dallas today! Our team is ready to take over all those administrative tasks so you can rest assured that your property is in safe hands!