Subletting Tips

May 7, 2012

apartment keys!

With the semester nearing an end and summer just around the corner, you may find yourself confronting a move.  Whether moving to a new city for a summer internship, a new job, or because mom and dad decided to make your old room into a home gym, you could end up looking for a sublet. At the surface, subletting can be an overwhelming and horribly unorganized process. That being said, it can actually bring positives with it: renting a sublet is a great way to test the waters of a new neighborhood or new roommates due to the shorter than usual lease terms.

For those looking to sublet their current apartment, have no fear: the summer frequently brings an influx of individuals looking for shorter-term leasing, and if you rent near a college campus, then many colleges run summer programs where both the university’s students and students who usually attend other universities come and study for the summer.  Below are some ideas for ways to navigate the process from both sides of it, so that you can get your summer off to a great start in a fabulous sublet!

Be flexible

Flexibility counts when looking for a sublet or renting your apartment as a sublet.  Being open minded to a new neighborhood, different roommates than you had originally planned (or having no roommates at all), or different amenities than you thought you wanted can help you find a great sublet.  A new neighborhood can bring tons of exciting opportunities for exploring new restaurants and activities, new roommates could mean new best friends (or living alone could provide you with the distraction-free environment you have always lusted after,) and you may not even notice the lack of a dishwasher in the kitchen once you have come to love the oversized, old windows in your apartment.

That being said, from the other side of the process, flexibility counts as well.  Flexibility according to lease date can be an especially important tool in helping you find a subletter.  If someone comes across your apartment and wants to rent it, but alas they want the sublet to start on the 15th of the month and you were hoping for a 1st of the month start date, do not immediately throw the offer away.  Strongly consider the offer still, as there are no guarantees with subletting, and this could potentially be the best offer you receive, (and turn into the most economically appealing choice.)

Cover all ground

Sublet opportunities, and opportunities to find an individual to sublet your apartment, are scattered everywhere.  While this is one of the contributing factors to the overwhelming feeling which frequently accompanies subletting, it is also one of the easiest areas to tackle. It’s easy to fall into the alluring trap of making one Craigslist listing and bemoaning the lack of response on your apartment as your listing becomes buried within an hour on the website.  One way to avoid this is to not be afraid to reach out to your nearest and dearest hundreds of Facebook friends with a status announcing your search, or similarly advertising your soon-to-be available apartment.  Social networking is an invaluable tool when dealing with subletting.  Your middle school lab partner could totally be looking for a sublet, and a friend of a friend could be looking for someone to rent his apartment.  Additionally, announcing such a search can be a great way to connect with potential roommates.  Many students find themselves drawn to the same cities for summer opportunities, so chances are others in your network could be going through the same process as you.  Similarly, look to reach out to whatever resources are available to you.  If you attend college, many universities have off-campus housing offices where students can go for listings and for help finding local rentals.  Contacting them with information about your apartment or your search for a sublet could lead to a plethora of interest in your unit as well as many suitable matches for those looking to rent.

Lastly, don’t get stressed

It’s easy to become stressed out and overwhelmed by the process of either finding a sublet or trying to sublet your apartment.  If looking to sublet, be sure to always discuss subletting with your landlord first, as every landlord has his/her own rules and policies regarding subletting.  This can save you a lot of time and potential aggravation.  Additionally, if you are looking for a sublet, don’t get discouraged: all it takes is one advertisement for you to find the sublet of your dreams.

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