Renter's Terminology

Rental Agreement or Lease

A legally binding contract between a landlord and a tenant, whether written or verbal, containing the terms and conditions of the use and occupancy of a dwelling unit and its premises.  A rental agreement usually describes a month-to-month tenancy or a longer term tenancy such as nine months or a year.


These may include first and last month’s rent, security deposit, and cleaning fees.  Be sure these fees are clearly spelled out in your lease.


The end of the tenancy that occurs automatically at the end of the lease or as a result of mutual agreement or by court order.


The owner of the property that is leased or rented to another.


To put a tenant out by legal process.


To lease or rent all or part of a leased or rented property.


It is illegal to discriminate based on race, color, sex, family status, religion, and nation of origin, mental or physical disability.

Credit Check

Landlords may check your credit history to see if you have a history of paying your bills on time.  Landlords may also check your criminal history through public records.

Right of Entry

A landlord must give a 24 hour written or verbal notice prior to entry unless other agreements have been made.  Your landlord may enter the rental without notice or consent in the following cases:

  • An emergency, which includes a repair problem which must be repaired immediately to avoid serious damage.  Note:  The landlord must provide written or verbal notice within 24 hours after an emergency entry.
  • When the tenant has requested repairs in writing, but only at reasonable times within seven days of the request for repairs.
  • When the tenant has been absent for more than seven days and entry is reasonably necessary.
  • Pursuant to a legal order.
  • When the tenant has abandoned or surrendered the premises.
  • To come to the property to serve a notice, but in this case the landlord may not enter the dwelling.

Month to Month Tenancy

 A tenancy that automatically renews and continues for successive monthly periods on the same terms and conditions originally agreed upon until terminated by either party.  Termination occurs upon 30 days written notice by the tenant or by the landlord or by mutual agreement.  Changes in terms or conditions including the amount of rent may also occur upon 30 days written notice by the landlord.


  • Thurs. Dec. 15, 12noon
    All residential buildings close for Winter Break
  • Sat. Jan. 7, 12noon
    All residential buildings open for Spring Semester
  • Sat. March 4, 12noon
    Residence Halls close for Spring Break (Rocker I/II remain open)
  • Sun. March 12, 8am
    Residence Halls re-open after Spring Break
  • Sat. May 6, 12noon
    All residential buildings close