Drafting a Subletting Clause in Your Lease

Most landlords require their tenants to get written permission before subletting their property. And for that they need an precise and legally binding ‘Subletting Clause’ in their lease contracts.

A subletting clause is an important part of the rental agreement, as it helps the landlord protect their investment and maintain control over their property. It includes the requirements that have to be fulfilled by tenants who plan to sublet the residence.

This article will help you understand what a subletting clause is, and how to draft and include one in your lease contract.

What Is a Subletting Clause?

A subletting clause is a part of a lease agreement that lays out the terms and conditions of subletting and specifies the requirements that must be met by tenants who intend to sublet property. These clauses usually include details such as the tenant’s responsibilities when it comes to the property, restrictions on how long the subletting can last, and the landlord’s right to refuse a sublet.

Why Do You Need a Subletting Clause?

It is important to include a subletting clause in your rental agreement because it allows you to protect your rights and interests as a landlord. It also gives you the opportunity to set out guidelines and requirements that tenants must follow if they intend to sublet your property.

Things To Include in Your Subletting Clause

When drafting a subletting clause in your lease, there are various elements that you need to include:

  • Duration: The clause should specify how long the subletting arrangement can last.
  • Approval: The clause should include information about how a tenant can request permission to sublet and details of who needs to approve the subletting arrangement.
  • Security Deposit: If a tenant plans to sublet, it is usually necessary for them to pay a security deposit, and this should be outlined in the subletting clause.
  • Rent Amount: The clause should also specify the amount of rent that the subtenant will need to pay.
  • Subtenant Authorization: The clause should include information about who is allowed to sublet the property and what type of authorization they will need to provide.
  • Consequences: It is also important to include information regarding what the consequences or penalties would be if the tenant breaches the clause.

What Are the Benefits of Having a Subletting Clause in a Lease?

There are several benefits to including a subletting clause in your lease agreement:

  • It gives you the chance to retain control over your property.
  • It helps you protect your investment by ensuring a tenant is responsible for any damages caused by their subtenants.
  • It allows you to determine who is allowed to sublet the property and specify the duration of the arrangement.
  • It can help you protect yourself from a tenant who tries to assign or sublet the property without your approval.

Rights of Landlords vs Tenants

The subletting clause should also outline the rights of the landlord and tenant when it comes to subletting the property. The landlord’s right to approve or reject a tenant’s request to sublet should be clearly outlined in the clause.

On the other hand, the tenant has the right to terminate the subletting arrangement in certain circumstances. It should also be made clear that the tenant is not allowed to assign or sublet the property without the landlord’s written consent.


Including a subletting clause in your lease agreement helps you protect your rights and interests as a landlord by creating a legally binding agreement between you and the tenant. It allows you to set out specific rules and conditions that the tenant must follow when subletting your property.

It is important to be thorough and include all the necessary elements when drafting the subletting clause in order to ensure that it meets the legal requirements and protects your rental property.

What is the purpose of a subletting clause in a lease?

A subletting clause in a lease is intended to protect the landlord from having an unapproved tenant take possession of their rental unit. The clause will typically outline the tenant’s responsibilities surrounding subletting, including obtaining the landlord’s written consent before any subletting takes place. The clause typically also outlines the responsibilities of the tenant should any issues arise with the subtenants, such as early termination or breaching of the lease agreement. Ultimately, a subletting clause in a lease serves to protect both the tenant and landlord from any liabilities that may be incurred should the tenant choose to sublet their rental unit.

What is the difference between subletting and a lease assignment?

Subletting is when a tenant rents out their leased apartment to a third party for a short period of time. The tenant still retains the original lease agreement and is still responsible for paying the rent, abiding by the terms of the lease, and dealing with the landlord.

Lease assignment is when the original tenant transfers their lease to a third party which includes transferring all the rights of the original lease to the new tenant. This usually requires the tenant to get the landlord’s permission. The landlord may require the new tenant to pass a background and credit check before they can approve the assignment. The new tenant will then take on all the responsibilities of the lease, while the original tenant is released from making any further payments or being responsible for the lease.

What happens if a tenant wants to sublet or assign their lease?

In most cases, tenants must get permission from their landlord before subletting or assigning their lease. The tenant should provide the landlord with details of the proposed sublet or assignment, and the landlord may be able to provide approval or a denial based on their individual policies. If the landlord does not grant the tenant permission, the tenant must still abide by the terms of their lease.

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