This is a summary of some of the basic lease terms. All terms and conditions discussed here, are in-line with standard rental agreements, although the "right to enter" provisions reflect a home share with a housemate rather than a rental. All terms and conditions of the Home Share Agreement adhere to the principles of the Washington State Residential Landlord-Tenant Act (WSRL-TA).
None of the following information is offered as legal advice, but rather is the homeowner's "opinion", based on his training in the real estate field. The homeowner is not a lawyer, thus any statements contained herein that attempt to quote law should be further evaluated by a licensed legal professional before taking any legal action, regarding any legal matter. The following paragraphs do not contain the actual wording of the provisions in the Home Share Agreement.
The 12-month "net-lease" is a legally binding contract. The housemate is legally bound to "perform" the terms and conditions for the entire length of the agreement. Without a novation, sub-lease, or assignment - which are not offered with this home share - there is no legal way to walk away from the agreement before it's natural termination, and the housemate will be bound to make timely monthly payments through the last month of the agreement.
All leases begin at 12:01 AM on the first day the lease is in effect, and end at 11:59 PM on the last day the lease is in effect. If there is no signed housemate prior to August 1 of the next lease period, leases that take effect after August 1, will be shorter than 12-months, as all leases and agreements end on July 31 at 11:59 PM without exception.
No lease will be written for a period longer than 12-months, but all tenancies (with few exceptions) may be renewed by signing a new 12-month agreement.
Housemate cannot be legally obligated to perform under any other lease agreement that is concurrent with, or overlaps, the period that the Home Share Agreement is in effect.
Each person is "jointly and severally" responsible for the performance of all terms and conditions of the agreement. If the "housemate" consists of two people living as a couple, and one of those persons moves out and refuses to continue to pay their portion of the reimbursement, the remaining housemate is legally bound to pay all amounts due until the natural termination of the agreement. If both housemates move out prior to the natural termination of the agreement and there is no novation, sub-lease, or assignment, and both housemates refuse to continue to make timely payments of the reimbursement, the homeowner can legally pursue both or either one of the housemates for the performance of the entire agreement to it's natural termination, until such time as the homeowner can otherwise mitigate the financial damages caused. Although the legal wording varies, this is a standard provision in all rental contracts.
The housemate will be required to certify that The Suite is in acceptable and livable condition, meets housemate's standards and requirements, and that there is no visible mold or mildew. The homeowner will make no warranties as to improvements to The Suite, and the housemate accepts it "as is". This is a standard provision in all rental contracts.
The monthly reimbursement is due before 12:00 noon on the 1st day of each month. Without prior waiver, the reimbursement is late at 12:01 PM on the 1st, and the housemate will be charged a $10 late fee. If the reimbursement is not paid by 12:00 noon on the 5th day of the month, the housemate will be charged an additional late fee of 10% of the monthly reimbursement amount. Late fees are intended to discourage late payments, and partially cover penalties that the homeowner incurs when he is unable to make timely payments on his accounts specifically due to the housemate's tardiness in paying.
Application of Payments
Payments received will be applied to monies owed as follows: First to bank charges; second to monies owned for repairs, damage or theft; third to monies owed for houseguest's charges; fourth to penalties and fines; fifth to monies owed for late charges; sixth to monies owed for past due reimbursements; and seventh to monies owed for the current reimbursement. Failure to pay other monies due one month may cause part or all of the reimbursement payment for the next month to be applied to those charges instead of to the current reimbursement, thus making the reimbursement payment late, and causing assessment of additional late charges. This is common rental industry practice.
There are restrictions on the maximum number of people that can be in The Suite at one time.
There are restrictions on how many consecutive and accrued days a visitor, houseguest, or partner may stay in The Suite before the housemate is charged for services - the maximum limit is fairly generous, thus should not be an issue for most people. Visitors are forbidden from using the shower or laundry facilities, and houseguests and partners are restricted in their use, but again, maximum limits are fairly generous.
Right to Access
This is where a "home share" differs from a "rental". The only room in The Suite that is not legally shared with the homeowner is The Suite's bedroom, which technically allows homeowner access to the kitchen, living/dining/study area, and bathroom without prior notice as a "housemate". Practically speaking however, the homeowner will not be sharing any portion of The Suite, but may from time-to-time need access to other areas of the first level.
Kitchen/Study-dining-living space/Bathroom. The homeowner has a "knock first" policy, and will never enter without making contact with the housemate, unless the housemate is not present. In most cases, the homeowner will give the housemate prior notice of his need and intent to enter, and if entry was made while the housemate was out, the homeowner will give notice-after-the-fact that homeowner did enter and for what reason.
Bedroom. Whether the housemate is present or away, the homeowner will never enter the bedroom without giving the housemate "proper notice" as required by the WSRL-TA (24 to 48 hours depending on the reason for the entry), unless (1) the housemate grants entry otherwise, (2) there is an emergency that threatens life or structure, or (3) a criminal warrant is being enforced by law enforcement. This provision in the lease is the same as in rental contracts.
Alterations to any surface, fixture, fitting, drawer, cabinet, shelf, molding, appliance, window, sill, door, or furnishing is not allowed under any circumstance. Penalties and damages will be assessed should this condition be ignored.
Pets are only allowed if specifically provided by the agreement. There is an additional deposit for having a pet, and an additional deposit and penalty for secreting a pet from the homeowner. The homeowner has found that even the housemate with the best of intentions doesn't keep up with dog waste removal, so a new monthly fee of $40 is added to the reimbursement if you have a dog. Refer to "Pet Policy" on the "Before You Apply" menu.
Firearms & Explosives
Firearms, weapons, flamable gases & liquids, and explosives are forbidden.
Mold has never been an issue at SpringWater, and no mold will be present at the housemate's move-in. Should any mold develop while the housemate is under contract, it is up to the housemate - not the homeowner - to take action and mitigate any damages, as provided by the WSRL-TA. Mold will not be a legal defense for early termination of the lease agreement because there will be no pre-existing mold present.
The homeowner is not legally obligated to offer, or entertain a request for, a "novation", a "sub-lease", or "assignment" of the lease, and should not be expected to.
Moving Out Before Natural Termination of Agreement
The housemate is legally responsible to fulfill the "term of tenancy", and to make all reimbursement payments until the natural termination of the agreement. It is illegal to "break a lease", unless the homeowner agrees to a novation, sub-lease, or assignment - which he doesn't.
Penalties & Fines
There are penalties, fines, and damages for violating the terms & conditions of the agreement, some of them are for:  sheltering a pet without an agreement,  painting walls or other surfaces without written permission,  drilling or piercing walls or soffits, and  allowing "visitors" to use laundry facilities, or take showers.