A question about temporary subletting

5 Replies


I have a Landlord questions regarding a roommate situation (young couple) and a request for temporary subletting.

They are an early 20's female couple/partners who moved in from out of state because one of them have found a job with a very large and known company. The other one was planning to get a job after moving in. The one with the job (which was verified by me) had enough income to cover income/rent ratio, and the other one had good previous employment history (verified by me as well) but no current earnings.

Between then and now the second tenant told me she found a job, so as of now they are both employed (to the best of my knowledge)

About a couple of months later, the 1st tenant told me that her work place give their new employees an opportunity to rotate between sites for 3 months at a time, and that she would like to try that, and asks if it will be possible to have someone else stay instead of her for these 3 months during the summer. She suggested that she and her partner attempt to find the replacement, and once they do they will refer her to me so that I can do my own vetting as I do with any prospective tenant.

I have told her that this is something that we can do, but that I will discuss specifics with her at a later date (I was getting ready to head out for a big trip)

I did start to have some second thoughts about my answer. My ultimate consideration was this: It is best for me to try to accommodate, while making sure I am covered as reasonably possible, rather than simply say "no" and end up with a resentful tenant.

I guess my question is, what stipulations should I insist on going forward with this? I know that there are the considerations if this arrangement is to go forward, but I know that once roommate changes start to happen, things can change and situations that I cannot foresee can arise.

I welcome any tips or thoughts on the matter,

Thank you

You are right that things do change. Once the new sub let moves in the original two may move out leaving you with one tenant...the new sub let. Screen any sub let applicant as though they will end up as your only permanent tenant. Full permanent employment, income 3X full rent, credit score. Make sure you write up the lease holding each individually responsible for the entre rent if things fall apart.

Screen them the same as you would any other tenant.  Make sure they sign paperwork saying they can stay for a max of 3 months, the original tenants are responsible for the condition of the unit and you are NOT responsible for any of the tenant's possessions.

We have allowed subletters under similar circumstances. 

The subletter must pass your background check, and preferably have the income needed to support the rent as well just in case they become a long term tenant.  Be thorough on this background check- chances are they are fine, but it could also be a way for a  tenant getting into a rental when they normally wouldn't qualify, and then staying beyond the end of the lease.

The roommates must sign an agreement with the subletter- this shows you that the tenant that is staying is ok with the situation.  I'd have them address how the rent is to be handled- usually we just invoice the subletter but the original tenants are responsible if that person doesn't pay.  Also, how long they are staying, how they are handling keys, and make sure they know that the two on the lease are still financially responsible.  

Sounds like a big hassle and liability. If they can’t stay I’d release them off the lease and just find new suitable tenants instead of this nonsense of getting in a replacement and crossing your fingers