Student Legal Services

Below are some tips on subletting:

  • READ YOUR LEASE. Usually you will need your landlord’s written consent to sublease. Contact your landlord for information on the subleasing process.
  • CONSULT YOUR ROOMMATES. Most likely all of the original tenants are “jointly and severally liable” for the entire rent. If a subtenant does not pay rent, the remaining tenants are still legally responsible for the full rent.
  • SIGN A SUBLEASE AGREEMENT WITH YOUR SUBTENANT. Make sure that you include the total amount of rent to be paid, how rent will be paid, beginning and ending dates of the sublease (check your original lease to make sure the sublease ends on or before your original lease!) Sublease agreements can be found on the Beyond the Diag website
  • RECORD A PERMANENT ADDRESS.  In short, know who this subtenant is and do not hesitate to ask for references!
  • COLLECT A SECURITY DEPOSIT.  Remember, the security deposit cannot be more than one and half times the monthly rent.
  • BEFORE THE SUBTENANT MOVES IN.  Before the subtenant receives the keys, collect the security deposit and first rental payment.
  • WALK THROUGH.  On the day that the subtenant moves in, conduct a walk through of the apartment.  During this walk through, record (take pictures and/or video) the condition of the unit. Have your subtenant complete an inventory checklist before they move in. Inventory checklists can be found on the Beyond the Diag website
  • AFTER SUBTENANT MOVES OUT.  You should walk through the apartment again when the subtenant moves out so that you can record any damage they caused during their tenancy.

Remember, you are still the primary leaseholder – if your subtenant damages the apartment, fails to pay rent, or otherwise violates the lease, your landlord will hold you responsible!  Also, always wait to make sure that checks clear before issuing refunds.

For other helpful tips, please refer to the Housing Information Office's handout.

                                                                 !!!Fraud Warning!!!

The Ann Arbor Police Department has confirmed a number of scams that target students and landlords via email requests to lease property.  Please be wary of perspective renters and subtenants who contact you by email expressing an interest to rent a space sight-unseen.  For more information about internet scams or to report suspicious activity, please visit the Federal Trade Commission's website.