Why You Should Sign a Lease Agreement with Your Subletter

By Alyssa Laffitte on December 3, 2017

Will you be vacating your place for a short period of time? If so, you should consider subletting your place to get some help with the rent while you are away. In a nutshell, subletting is renting your place to someone else for a short time. The subletter pays a good percentage of the rent of the place so that you don’t have to pay all the rent while you are gone. Of course, this is all done with the permission of your landlord, since they ultimately own the place.

Image via Isorepublic.com

Subletting is an important legal and financial transaction. With all important legal and financial transactions, you should be protected with a contract. Subletting is no exception for this, so I would recommend that everyone who sublets should sign a lease agreement with their subletter. Unfortunately, because subletting is an arrangement meant to last only for a short period of time, many people do not even sign their own lease agreements with their subletters. But this is a mistake!

Here are some reasons you should sign your own lease agreement with your subletter.

(Please remember that I am not an attorney, nor am I studying law. I’m just a student giving fellow students some basic advice. If you have further questions, you should ask an attorney.)

When you signed your original contract with your landlord, you agreed to take care of the place and to pay a certain amount of money for rent. Unfortunately, this deal doesn’t magically disappear when you vacate your place, even if it’s only temporary. Even if you are not there, your landlord expects you to pay the rent and make sure the place is taken care of. This is when the subletter comes in. You are trusting that they will help cover some of the rental costs and will take care of the place. If they don’t pull through with their part of the deal, then you will be in trouble with your landlord. To make sure they stick to the deal, it’s a good idea to write up your own contract with the subletter, rather than just rely on the contract you have with your landlord.

As I said, it is important to protect yourself when starting any big legal and financial transactions. The best way to legally protect yourself is through a contract. A contract will have your back if your subletter does anything they shouldn’t (for example, if they do not pay their rent on time or if they trash your place). Hopefully you will not have to deal with a subletter like this, but in the event that you do, your contract will help make sure you get the money you and the subletter agreed on.

Another reason you should sign your own lease agreement with your subletter is that a lease agreement provides clarity for both you and the subletter. A lease agreement prevents any surprises; it will make sure that both parties know what they are getting into when they agree to start this business relationship. Your subletter cannot say that they did not know how much they needed to pay or by when, because all this information will be outlined in your lease agreement.

Of course, the best way to draft these lease agreements is with the help of an attorney. They will know what exactly to include in the agreement to maximize the clarity and protection for both you and the subletter. Set up a meeting with you, an attorney, and the subletter present so that you can draft a letter that will benefit all parties involved in the subletting agreement.

Be sure to consult any roommates when writing this lease agreement, too. In fact, your roommate should be very involved in the entire subletting process, because the subletter will be their roommate for a period of time. Include your roommate in choosing your subletter and during the drafting of the subletter lease agreement. They will greatly appreciate it!

If you ever decide to sublet your place, I would definitely recommend signing your own lease agreement with the subletter. Signing your own lease agreement will make sure both you and the subletter are protected and know the terms of the subletting agreement.

22, ISFJ. Biology student. College lifestyle blogger. Avid reader and writer. Dog lover. Nerd. Boyband enthusiast. Superhero in training. Here to help you become the best you can be!

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