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What You Need To Know About Subletting

So you have rented an apartment until August but you will be leaving the area in May? Or maybe you've just signed a lease and need to get out of it? Whatever your situation may be, the answer might be to sublet.

What is subletting?

Subletting is having someone take over the responsibilities of your lease for you. The terms of the sublet (also known as a sublease) may be that the new tenant will pay a portion of your rent and you will pay the rest. Or perhaps you've found someone to take over your place in the lease. Whatever the circumstance, a person has agreed to sign the lease and has taken responsibility for some or all your portion of the rent.

Under what circumstances may I sublet?

If your lease expressly permits subletting or assignment, you are legally free to substitute another tenant for yourself. The same is true if there is nothing expressed in your lease against subletting. If, however, your landlord has explicitly forbidden subleasing, you are NOT permitted to do so unless you have made special arrangements with your landlord. Some additional terms may be included such as written consent of the landlord or processing fees, all of which should be outlined in your lease. Whatever the case, GET EVERYTHING IN WRITING!!

What are the Different Types of Agreements I can make?

Generally, there are two types of sublets or agreements- Assignment and Sublease.

Assignment. Under an assignment, the new tenant pays rent to, and deals directly with, the landlord. Be aware that if the new tenant leaves or refuses to pay rent, the landlord can sue both the original tenant (you) and new tenant for damages.

Sublease. In a sublease, the original tenant becomes a landlord to the subtenant. The subtenant pays rent to the original tenant who then forwards it to the landlord. Again, the original tenant is still responsible to the landlord if thesubtenant breaches the lease.

What Should I Include in the Sublet Agreement?

Make sure all the terms of the lease are understood by all parties in writing. This way, if there are any misunderstandings in the future, you can refer to this written agreement.

Topics important to address in the sublet agreement include:

Subletting can be relatively simple. If you have further questions, call the Office of Off-Campus Living, 230 HUB-Robeson Center, (814) 865-2346.

NOTE: Be aware that agreements should be adapted to fit your situation. The examples provide for you in our office are not legally binding, and you might want to seek legal advice before taking action. Any further concerns should be addressed in your lease or by your landlord.

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