New simple lease design

Could you transform leases into a more proactive, problem-solving tool through better information design?

How can leases be more of a useful tool to manage the landlord-tenant relationship? At the start of this relationship, a lease could:

  • lay out responsibilities and obligations clearly
  • let people know what to do if things go wrong
  • connect people to services in case they’re anticipating a problem (like around rent payments, especially)
  • give a sense of trust and mutual respect

This lease from the information design agency Hey Plain Jane shows what a lease could be.

Model visual design lease

What makes a well-designed lease?

  1. Grouping into strategic sections, so that a person can scan for the most important messages & dig into the details where they’re most concerned.
  2. Light illustrations that complement the text, and help the reader visualize & understand what’s being discussed
  3. Plain language that reflects how people normally talk about these issues
  4. Streamlining into a cover sheet like this one that summarizes the key points — and text afterwards, in subsequent pages can detail more
  5. Use of lists and bullet points to break apart large passages into actionable steps

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