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EmpressPixie's avatar

Is my landlady being unreasonable about these sub-tenants?

Asked by EmpressPixie (14721points) July 9th, 2009

I’m moving to go to grad school. I still have two months left on my lease. My landlady told me I have to sublet the place. I found two people who want to rent it. My landlady won’t let me rent it to them because they do not want to move in as a couple, but as roommates. Is this unreasonable?

They want to split the house so that the equal sized bedroom and living room (both very large) act as bedrooms. I currently have this set up anyway as I use my old bed for a couch.

I found a website that says :

Can I sublet my apartment?
Yes, and your landlord cannot charge you any subletting fees. Furthermore, if your landlord does not let you sublet to a suitable person, you don�ft have to pay rent for the period that begins when the subtenant was willing to move in.

Would this count (ie, is this unreasonable on her part) or am I out of my mind to ask to begin with?

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15 Answers

PandoraBoxx's avatar

If they go on as a couple, then the entire rent is due at one time. If they go on as roommates, then he’s collecting half of the rent from each person. How many people are on your lease now?

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

The “couple” thing sounds arbitrary. That’s likely a personal disposition of a landlord rather than an actual item mentioned in the lease. I’d go over your lease with a fine tooth comb just to be sure there’s nothing specifying that “couple” stipulation.

Allibaby808's avatar

When subleting you probably are going to have to pay a penalty. I subleted once and the fee was $150 to have my name taken off and replaced with someone else. As far as who moves in… as long as they can pay the rent and their credit checks out I don’t see why it matters if they are a couple or roommates. The main objective should be her getting paid and on time. I agree with you she is being unreasonable.

EmpressPixie's avatar

I’m the only one on the lease right now but she says that a couple can rent it, just not two roommates. Not a married couple and therefore legally one entity… just a couple.

Qingu's avatar

Your landlady sounds like a bitchbucket

EmpressPixie's avatar

Also—she said IN WRITING that a couple could rent it, but these two women could not.

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

Is that in the lease? Weak!

EmpressPixie's avatar

It’s not in the lease. There is nothing extra in the lease about subletting.

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

If it’s not in the lease, you may have a valid legal point.
Also it sounds discriminatory.

BBSDTfamily's avatar

If it’s her place, she probably gets a say in who lives there. Check your lease though.

augustlan's avatar

The only thing I could see that might make her point valid is if this is a one bedroom apartment, it may not technically be legal to rent it for use as a two bedroom. I’d call your local tenant’s rights organization.

Judi's avatar

Most leases say that all residents are “jointly and severably liable.” Which means that if one person does not pay their share of the rent, the other is still liable regardless of their relationship status. Is that the condition that they are trying to avoid? If so, I would side with the landlord. (Of course, I AM a landlord.)
If she is discriminating BECAUSE of their relationship status, then you have a fair housing complaint.

EmpressPixie's avatar

She says she is discriminating because it is a 1BR and they want to set it up like a 2BR. It’s huge though—it is definitely legally big enough for two people. And she has said that I can rent it to a couple. Because they are not planning to share the bedroom, I cannot rent to them.

Judi's avatar

It is none of her buisness where they sleep, unless they want to somehow modify the apartment.

Judi's avatar

If you brought them a qualified applicant and they actually put in writing that they denied them because of their relationship status, I am not an attorney, but I believe you would have a strong case for breaking your lease, especially if that is the only reason they turned your applicants down. Where people sleep in their rented space is up to them. Actually fair housing will investigate cases of discrimination if the qualifying standard is less than 2 per bedroom plus one more. (I guess fair housing is assuming someone will sleep in the living room and that’s acceptable.)

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