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Topic: Landlord and tenant documents

sublease
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Sublease

Sublease

You may not be in a position to find anyone to take over the remaining term of your lease. However, there’s every possibility that you may be able to find a tenant who’s prepared to take a lease for a shorter period - a sublet. Use our form to enable you
to sublet your premises.

Advice

A sublease is quite simply a lease created out of your head lease, i.e. it’s for a shorter period than your own lease. How long is entirely up to you. Unlike an assignment, where the whole of your lease is transferred to the new tenant, when you sublet you’re still answerable to your existing landlord under your existing lease.

Tip

Just like trying to assign, the starting point is to always check the wording of your lease to see if it allows you to sublet. It will normally say that you can, but it’s likely that your landlord will only let you go ahead provided that you’re only subletting the whole of your premises as opposed to part. There may even be a further restriction imposed that any subletting must be granted outside the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 (“the Act”). If this is the case, use our form to “contract out” of the Act.

Checking them out

If your landlord’s consent is required before you can go ahead and sublet, they’ll want to take up the usual references, e.g. bank, trade, previous landlord, etc.

Ignoring the lease

If your landlord’s consent is needed under the lease, don’t think that you can just ignore this and proceed with your sublease. If the landlord finds out what you’ve done, then it will give them the right to forfeit (terminate) your lease.

Some drafting tips

A sublease is an opportunity for you to impose whatever terms you think are appropriate, e.g. repairs, amount of rent etc. However, it’s also worthwhile checking your existing lease to ensure that it matches up and isn’t inconsistent, e.g. the rent review periods are the same, permitted use of the premises is the same, any specified periods for repairs and decoration etc. The last thing you want to do is to find that you’ve allowed your subtenant to do something in their sublease that contravenes your own head lease. Don’t forget too, that because you’re still on the hook under your existing agreement, your subtenant will expect a covenant from you to adhere and comply with the terms of your lease.

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