Facts about the Sublease Agreement template

What is a Sublease Agreement?

When rental property tenants want to rent out a room or an entire unit, they create a sublease agreement with the subtenant. The agreement works much like a standard residential lease, so the document lists how long the subtenant remains in the space, the rent price, and whether the subtenant may alter or make improvements to the property. Besides residential sublease contracts, business tenants may sublet a commercial space.

Reasons that a person may want to sublet a space include temporary relocation for a job or taking care of an ailing loved one or something similar. The original tenant may also want to earn extra income by renting out an empty room. No matter the reason for wanting to sublet, the original tenant must refer to the original lease agreement or speak with the landlord to ensure the legality of subletting.

General items found on the contract include the names of all parties involved in the agreement, how long the sublease term lasts, rent payment, and the original lease's terms. The contract may also contain provisions such as whether the subtenant must have renters' insurance, how to handle utility payments, and whether the subtenant must pay a security or damage deposit. The document should also note whether the sublease is periodic or fixed.

What is a Sublease Agreement used for?

Much like standard leases, sublease agreements break down the subtenant and sublandlord's individual and shared responsibilities and expectations, which helps avoid confusion and misinterpretation. All parties must see eye to eye to avoid conflict and understand their options for addressing disagreements that arise. A well-written agreement provides tenant and landlord with equal legal protection and legal recourse if the living situation curdles, which does not apply to verbal agreements. Further, sublease contracts help ensure that the sublandlord does not violate her or his original lease with the original landlord, which may require the sublandlord to get the landlord's written consent before offering a commercial or residential space to a subtenant.

Why should you use a Sublease Agreement?

Even if an individual offers a room or an entire apartment or condo to a good friend, the two should draw up a written sublease arrangement to protect themselves and their friendship. Verbal contracts do not hold up in court, and parties leave themselves open to financial damages if a subtenant fails to pay rent, damages the space or neglects maintenance responsibilities. Sublease agreements also save time, answering questions that the subtenant or sublandlord may have about the arrangement and offering guidance on how to handle issues such as smoking in the space, parking, guests and whether the subtenant may have pets, and what kind of pets.

How to write a Sublease Agreement

Written sublease contracts offer protection and peace of mind, but only when they contain the most essential elements. Well-written contracts contain the following items:

  • Description of the premises:

    Subtenants must know what areas of the unit they lease, especially if they rent a room rather than an entire condo, townhouse or apartment. The agreement must describe the leased premises and include the physical address.

  • Name of subtenant and tenant:

    Parties should write their full legal names on the agreement.

  • Sublease term:

    The contract should note how long the sublease term lasts. Both subtenant and sublandlord should understand that the sublease term does not need to last as long as the original lease. It is fine to sublet the unit or room monthly or for a set term.

  • Details of the original lease:

    Subtenants deserve to know the original lease's terms and provisions. That way, the sublandlord and subtenant have a better idea of whether the new tenant may have pets and where and whether tenants may smoke on the premises.

  • Rent amount:

    Sublandlords must specify how much the subtenant pays in rent and the rent due date. Further, the agreement should specify how long the new tenant has to pay rent until she or he owes late fees and additional charges. Sublandlords must understand that they remain liable to the original landlord for any rent the subtenant does not pay.

How to Fill Out a Sublease Agreement with PDFSimpli in Five Steps

To cover all legal bases, subleasing parties should use a template while drafting a sublease contract. Following are five steps for creating a proper agreement:

  • 1. Prepare:

    The original tenant must make sure the original lease or landlord allows subletting. The sublandlord must gather all necessary documents and details from the subtenant, such as proof of income, driver's license and a security deposit. The sublease agreement may need supplemental forms, such as a pet application.

  • 2. Choose a Software:

    A standard word processor or PDF editor may lack the tools and capabilities necessary to draft a proper agreement. PDFSimpli software lets users choose from several sublease agreement templates to find one that suits their tastes and situation best. The software includes tools for modifying, saving, creating, downloading and signing a completed PDF file.

  • 3. Fill Out or Edit the Sublease Agreement:

    PDFSimpli takes care of most of the hard work, but users have the option of editing fields to their liking. To enter information, users select the open box and type in the details. To edit existing text, users go to the toolbar and choose the "text" tool before clicking on the field they wish to edit, using the "erase" tool to get rid of undesired sections.

  • 4. Review:

    After entering and editing details, it is time to give the contract a thorough review. Specific areas that deserve careful attention include the spellings of names, dates, addresses and financial details.

  • 5. Save, Download, Print or Send for Signature:

    The final step is to save the finished agreement and download it for safekeeping. With PDFSimpli, users can type, upload or draw their signature on the document. All other parties should sign the document, and users can print a copy for themselves, the subtenant and the landlord. It is a good idea to file all supplementary forms, applications and documents with the agreement for proper record keeping.

Sublease Agreement Frequently Asked Questions

Subtenants sign a sublease contract rather than a standard lease. Subtenants also lease from the original tenant, not the original landlord. Roommates sign a standard lease and roommate agreement, which may include different responsibilities than those in a sublease.

"Sublease" and "sublet" are not interchangeable terms, but both refer to the same concept. A "sublease" is the document a person signs to record an agreement between an original tenant and the subtenant; sometimes the landlord, too. "Sublet" refers to the act of leasing a room or unit to a subtenant, or the room or unit itself.

Nearly any residential property qualifies for subletting, but the tenant must first check with the landlord to determine whether she or he may sublet the space. Examples of properties that tenants often sublet include basement suites, garages, storage properties, apartments, houses, duplexes, mobile homes, condos and townhouses. Tenants may sublet a single room in a house, condo or apartment.

No matter the property, sublandlords must specify how subtenants may use the space. Subtenants may want to operate a business out of the room or unit, but they may only do so if the original tenant's lease permits running a business on the premises. The person subletting the space may seek the landlord's permission to allow the subtenant to use the unit or room for an additional purpose.