3 Things to Look for in a Sublet

By Kaitlin Hurtado on July 8, 2017

Housing can be one of the most stressful (and expensive) aspects of college. Sometimes living with your best friend doesn’t work out or your work order for the leaking pipe was never put through to maintenance. Often, students find themselves between leases during the summer and without a place to stay.

Instead of uprooting your life at school and moving back home for the summer, look for a sublet you can stay in during the summer while you are in between leases. When looking for a sublet, you should consider the following things to make your sublet experience as easy as possible.

Pricing 

Depending on how you are looking for a sublet, the pricing can vary drastically. If you are subleasing from a close friend or an acquaintance, they may drop their intended price because they both trust you and know you. If you are subleasing from someone you found through a Facebook page or Craigslist, chances are negotiations for pricing may be harder for you.

When you start your search for a sublet, figure out how much you are willing to pay by looking at your budget and what you want in a sublet. If you want to be close to campus or a bus stop, you may be willing to pay for convenience. If you just care about having a roof over your head with running water, you may be looking to spend as little money as possible for your summer living space.

Some people will barely drop their asking price from the full amount of rent, saying that they would like to limit the amount of money they are losing out on from not living in the apartment or house themselves. If they continue to ask for a high price, look elsewhere — if you are looking to sublease in a college town there will be plenty of students subleasing their places for summer.

As the summer goes on, people often continue to drop the price they are asking for as their desperation grows. If possible, wait out deciding on a sublease until you are almost completely satisfied with the sublet terms, pricing included.

Accessible amenities 

Ask a potential subletter what is included. Is there a washer and dryer in the housing unit, or is it somewhere else in the housing community that you are still able to access? Can you expect to have free parking all the time or do you need to purchase a parking permit to bring your car to your new location?

Another great thing to ask for is if an AC unit is accessible, especially if you are subleasing during the summer and cannot stand hot weather.

House conditions and roommates 

If possible, try to visit the living space you are considering as a sublet. It is one thing to hear about the living space or see pictures, but it may be completely different when you see it yourself. Check to see if you’re going to have to be dealing with any pest issues — something that renters may hide from you in their desperation to find a subtenant for the summer. If the apartment looks extremely cluttered and dirty when you go to inspect it, chances are that it is like that all the time and the roommates that you may or may not live with could be the reason behind the mess.

When inspecting the apartment, try to see if you could also meet the roommates you will be living with. Sometimes only one person out of an entire apartment will sublease and you will only be taking over temporarily. The other tenants may have been living together for an entire year, or more, and it’s a good idea to figure out their personalities or if there are any pre-existing policies set between the roommates and if you are expected to follow them as a subtenant.

There may be policies on guests, partying, cleaning, etc. Figure out what is expected of you as a temporary roommate and also wh

at you can expect yourself. You don’t want to go through with subleasing the space only to discover that the roommates throw house parties once a week and expect you to help clean after every single one.

It is also a good idea to ask if the apartment will come furnished. Depending on if it’s your first apartment, you may have plenty of belongings and furniture to occupy space or none at all. If the person you are subleasing from only plans on subleasing for the summer or just a month, there is a chance that they may leave their personal belongings and furniture in the space. It’s good if you don’t want to bring any of your stuff, but not ideal if you have no other place to temporarily store your belongings.

 

Image via pixabay.com

By Kaitlin Hurtado

Uloop Writer
Hello! I'm Kaitlin, a second year Literary Journalism major at UC Irvine. I'm a writer on Uloop's national team and a campus editor for UCI.

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