So, you just got a new job that is going to require that you move to a new city. The only issue is that you just signed a new lease recently and you don’t want to be stuck paying rent on two different apartments. Just for that, we’ve put together 6 quick tips that you can use to sublease your apartment.
Remember that you need to read your apartment lease and make sure that subletting is allowed. Some properties and landlords must approve or won’t consider a sublease at all. Filling out the paperwork is equally as important, as you will be binding the new tenant to a lease.
Hire a Real Estate Agent
Chances are you will need to hire a professional to find the renter for you. If you are like most people, you probably don’t know where to start to find a renter to occupy your space. Sure you can try a new marketplace, but chances are you won’t be able to find an occupant. You will have to reimburse the agent at least ½ month’s rent. But when you consider it, that is a great deal when you consider you might have quite a few months left on your lease.
Your agent should also handle all of the paperwork for you, as well as qualify the applicant. More on that later!
Offer an Incentive
Apartments are always offering a discount or other incentive to motivate renters to sign a lease. And this is exactly the route you want to consider. Before you start discounting rent though, you might want to offer electricity or water in the rental price.
Unless you’re going to switch those out of your name, you might advertise your apartment as ALL BILLS paid. There are many ways to play your hand. If you do offer a rental incentive, try and offer ½ month’s rent for free. However, we advise that you give this free 1/2 month to the renter after they have paid their 1st month. You want the tenant to pay something upfront. This will help you avoid choosing a person who is looking for a free place to stay.
Which brings us to:
Run a Credit Check
Just like a major management company or landlord, you better run a full credit and background check on the tenant you choose. Remember that if they don’t pay, you will be on the hook for their rent. Don’t lease to anyone who has a broken lease, eviction, or judgment on their credit report.
While you’re at it, be sure and verify their income. Most apartment management companies require 3.5 times the monthly rent. Accepting anything less, and it may start to become difficult for the sublessee to pay their rent on time.
Fill out the Appropriate Paperwork Correctly
You will need to locate and fill out the appropriate subletting paperwork. If you hire a real estate agent, they will do this for you. If not, you will have to make sure that you get all of this information and fill it out appropriately. Be sure and look online for apartment locators who might be able to assist you.
This should include names, lease terms, the apartment name address, unit number, etc. If you need a sample you can find one here. Remember that you should require various deposits. Potentially a security and pet deposit if applicable, as well as first month’s rent.
Consider Paying the Early Termination Fee
Almost all lease contracts have a clause that will allow you to move out without any permanent credit damage. But you will have to pay one or two month’s of rent in advance. This is probably the easiest and least path of resistance for the majority of people. Pay it and move on.
Clean it Up
You want to lease it out as fast as possible. Make sure when a potential customer tours your home that it looks ready for moving in. The last thing you want is a dirty home during showings! If you don’t enjoy cleaning on your own, then hire a cleaning service to do this for you.
You can see this process is not the simplest. It will take a bit of work on your end if you intend to complete this process on your own.
Best of luck!