Is Lease Assignment better than a Sublease?
Many people including some Realtors are using terms assignment of lease and sublease very interchangeably. Some folks assume it’s the same thing, but in reality they are different. How so? Let me explain. If you are the existing tenant and you want to be out of your current lease, then you need to find a tenant to take over your lease. In legal terms, it’s referred to as Assignment of Lease, which involves 3 parties – the property owner, the original tenant and the new tenant . This agreement transfer’s the tenant’s rights and obligations to a new tenant. The reason most people prefer Assignment of lease is because your landlord will release you, as the old tenant from duties and obligations and will transfer it all to the new tenant. In other words, assignment of your lease to a new tenant gets you off the hook. You won’t collect rent from a new tenant, you won’t have to worry about any apartment repairs or work orders and you won’t deal with any headache. Landlord is the one who will be fully responsible. Now, Sublease is a completely different. When you sublet your apartment, you generally are willing to let someone else stay in your place for the time being, during the course of your existing lease. This becomes tricky. First, you need to always ask your landlord’s permission to sublease. They usually do not allow them. Even if they do allow you to sublease, then you are just letting some random person stay in your apartment and that person will have to pay you (current tenant) the rent payment and then you would have to pay the landlord. Now, what happens if at the end of this sublease, your apartment is trashed and ends up badly taken care of? Well, the responsibility would fall on you and you would have to deal with a landlord and some repairs may potentially be deducted from your security deposit. Should You Choose Assignment of Lease or Sublease? Even if your landlord allows both on your leasing agreement, you should always go with assignment of lease, as your number one choice. Why? Because if you sublease, you will be at the mercy of a new tenant, hoping and praying that the new tenant does not damage your apartment, while you’re away, which will end up being a serious financial burden.