GC: n

S: (last access: 10 November 2017); (last access: 10 November 2017).

N: 1. late 14c., “legal contract conveying property, usually for a fixed period of time and with a fixed compensation,” from Anglo-French les (late 13c.), Old French lais, lez “a lease, a letting, a leaving,” verbal noun from Old French laissier “to let, allow, permit; bequeath, leave”. Figuratively from 1580s, especially of life. Modern French equivalent legs is altered by erroneous derivation from Latin legatum “bequest, legacy.”
2. Three meanings:

  • a contract by which one conveys real estate, equipment, or facilities for a specified term and for a specified rent. Example: took out a five-year lease on the house; also: the act of such conveyance or the term for which it is made.
  • a piece of land or property that is leased.
  • a continuance or opportunity for continuance. Example: a new lease on life.

3. A lease may be defined as a grant of the right to possession of the leased premises for a specified period of time commencing either immediately or at some ascertainable date in the future and ending at some point thereafter. A transaction is characterized as a lease rather than a grant when the owner or the grantor of the interest retains a “reversionary interest”. In other words, possession of the leased premises reverts to the lessor on the termination of the lease. In order for the transaction to be characterized as a lease rather than a licence, the lessee’s possession of the leased premises must be exclusive. If ultimate possession and control remain with the lessor, a licence rather than a lease will exist. … (“Real Estate and Landlord and Tenant”, 1983-1984, p. 334).
4. A contractual agreement by which one party conveys an estate in property to another party, for a limited period, subject to various conditions, in exchange for something of value, but still retains ownership.
A lease contract can involve any property that is not illegal to own. Common lease contracts include agreements for leasing real estate and apartments, manufacturing and farming equipment, and consumer goods such as automobiles, televisions, stereos, and appliances.
Leases are governed by statutes and by Common Law, or precedential cases. Most leases are subject to state laws, but leases involving the U.S. government are subject to federal laws. Generally, federal laws on leases are similar to state laws.
5. A lease is created when a property owner (the offeror) makes an offer to another party (the offeree), and the offeree accepts the offer. The offer must authorize the offeree to possess and use property owned by the offeror for a certain period of time without gaining ownership. A lease must also contain consideration, which means that the offeree must give something of value to the offeror. Consideration usually consists of money, but other things of value may be given to the offeror. Finally, the offeror must deliver the property to the offeree or make the property available to the offeree. When a lease is formed, the property owner is called the lessor, and the user of the property is called the lessee.
Generally, a lease may be written or oral, but a lease for certain types of property must be in writing and signed by both parties. For example, if a lessee seeks to lease real property (land or buildings) for more than one year, the lease must be in writing. Some leases must be written, signed, and recorded in a registry of deeds. Such leases usually concern real property that will be leased for a period of more than three years.
A lease term begins when the lessee receives a copy of the lease. However, the lease need not be given directly to the lessee; it is enough that the lessee knows that the lease is in the hands of a third person acting on behalf of the lessee. A lease may also take effect when the lessee assumes control over the property.

S: 1. OED – (last access: 10 November 2017). 2. MW – (last access: 10 November 2017). 3. TERMIUM PLUS – (last access: 10 November 2017). 4 & 5. (last access: 10 November 2017).


CR: landlord, lessee, lessor, tenant.