SubLease Rental Agreement Template

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A sublease agreement is between an individual that has a lease with a landlord, the “sublessor”, and a person seeking to rent the same space from the sublessor, the “sublessee”. In most cases a sublease arrangement occurs when a sublessor has time left on their rental agreement with a landlord, and they would like to vacate earlier than the end date. Therefore, with the landlord’s consent, they may rent the space to someone else and play a middle-person while still paying rent to the landlord every month.

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What is a Sublease?

A Sublease is a secondary contract to the original lease which allows a tenant to rent out the property to another tenant (sublessee) to take their place. In a sublease, the original tenant on the master lease bears the full responsibility for any damage, non-payment of rent, or any other liability on behalf of the sublessee.

A Sublease is also referred to as the following:

  • Sub Lease
  • Sublease Agreement
  • Sublease Contract

The following are scenarios where a Sublease might occur when several months are left on the original tenant’s contract:

  • Tenant is assigned or finds a new job in a different city.
  • Tenant is unable to afford rent any longer.
  • Student goes home for the summer and wants someone to rent their space while away.

How to Sublease a House or an Apartment

Get approval from Landlord – It all starts and ends with the landlord’s decision. Typically in a lease agreement, it will state whether or not the tenant is able to sublease the property. Even if the tenant is allowed to sublet, they would still need approval from the landlord. In order to sell your landlord into the idea, you should explain why and when you are leaving and who you plan on taking over the lease which brings us to our next step, finding the right sublessee.

Find a new tenant – You should do the same when looking for a tenant just as a Landlord tries to find a trustworthy tenant by looking at their rental history, income and credit score. Craigslist is a popular place when trying to sublet a property and with that, you need to be extra careful. It will be harder for you to find out a tenant’s rental history as you do not have the same tools like a landlord does but you can still request proof of income, a credit report and personal references. By bringing your landlord a qualified tenant, you will have a greater chance of subletting your lease.

Negociate the new sublease – Your landlord may still want to fully screen your new tenant just as he or she did with you. If the tenant is approved, you will then need to negociate the new lease terms and price with a Sublease Agreement. It is generally known when subleasing that you will not get full price but if you can lock in the new tenant for around 70% or 80% of the original monthly payment price, you have negotiated well. Requiring a security or damage deposit is important as it will keep the new tenant in check. If possible, leave the negotiating responsibilities to the landlord as they have much more experience in that field.

Transitioning – When it comes time to hand over the keys to the new tenant (sublessee), whether furnished or not, you need to remove all your valuables and store them in a safe place. Remember, the new tenant is still your responsibility which means you can’t forget about the existence of your lease, as if anything goes wrong it will come back to you.