Before you sublease an apartment, either as a tenant or agree to subleasing as a landlord, learn more about the practice, whether or not your state has laws governing it and ways to help protect everyone involved.

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Sublease Agreements

A residential sublease states the agreement between a tenant and a subtenant, the person who will take over the original lease for a set length of time for set periodic payments. The original tenant becomes the landlord, and the subtenant becomes the tenant.

Common reasons for an original tenant to sublease include:

  • Moving for a short period of time for temporary work
  • Traveling for a few months without having to pay rent
  • Adding a roommate to the rental lease agreement

States with Sublease Laws and Proceedures

Seventeen states have tenant-friendly laws regarding residential subleasing. They range from Alaska, where the subtenant must apply directly to the landlord, who must reply in writing within 14 days and provide a valid reason if rejecting the subtenant, to Virginia, where the landlord only has 10 days to accept or reject a request from the original tenant or have the request automatically approved.

Other states with residential subleasing laws are:

  • Arkansas
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • Hawaii
  • Idaho
  • Missouri
  • Nebraska
  • Nevada
  • New York
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Dakota
  • Texas
  • Utah

You can find more information about your state?s subleasing laws on its government website. Tenants who live in a state that do not have laws regarding subleasing should check the original residential lease agreement and talk to their landlord about subleasing options.

Using a Sublease Agreement

As an original tenant, if you wish to sublease a rental property or room under the same terms as the original lease agreement, a simple sublease may be appropriate. You also may want to do the following as part of the subleasing process:

  • Run a credit check on the potential subtenant.
  • Collect a security deposit from the subtenant; state law and the original rental lease agreement may dictate the maximum amount allowed and to whom it must be paid.
  • Take photos of the rental property prior to subtenant move-in.
  • Provide subtenant with a renter's inspection worksheet.

Whether you are the property owner in a subleasing situation or the tenant-turned-landlord, fully understanding the terms and conditions of the lease and sublease agreements, as well as the state law governing the practice, results in the best possible chance for a successful subleasing.

Get started Start Your Sublease Agreement Answer some questions. We’ll take care of the rest.

Get started Start Your Sublease Agreement Answer some questions. We’ll take care of the rest.