Subletting-Renting or lending a rented home to another

Subletting-Renting or lending a rented home to another:

No rental agreement or state laws:[1] One who rented a home, may rent it to another so long as the second renter does not bring to live in the home more people than the first renter. Likewise, one who borrowed a home, may lend it and even rent it to another, for the remaining duration of time under his borrowed/renting terms.[2] [Furthermore, some Poskim[3] rule, that in cases that the upkeep of the property is the responsibility of the tenant, and the landlord is not responsible for repairing anything in the home, and on the contrary, the tenant must repair it prior to returning the property, then he may sublet it to as many people as he wants, so long as it won’t cause damage to the foundation of the building. The above allowance to sublet applies even if the landlord protests against the tenant doing so. However, in all cases, one may not sublet the apartment to people who one knows to be of destructive nature, and the landowner may protest one front subletting it to such people.[4]]

Rental contract and state codes: The entire allowance above only applies if one’s rental contract does not contain any agreement which prohibits one from subletting. If, however, the rental contract contains a clause which limits one’s ability to sublet, then this clause must be respected. Furthermore, there are areas, such as Texas[5], which contain laws regarding this matter, and prohibit subletting without permission from the landowner, even if a contract has not been signed. One must respect the state law in such cases, and it is Halachically binding.]



[1] Admur Hilchos Sheila Usechirus Halacha 2; Michaber 316/1 regarding rented item; Rama 342/1 regarding borrowed home; Rashba 1053 and 1145 regarding borrowed home; Rambam Sechirus 5/5 regarding rented home

Other opinions: Some Poskim rule one may not sublet a home in any circumstance, as there are tenants who destroy the home. [opinion brought in Rambam ibid as explained in Raavad ibid]

[2] The reason: As land remains constantly in the status and possession of its owner and it is not possible to flee with it elsewhere, and hence the issue of whether the owners trust the second person is not relevant at all. [Admur ibid; Taz 316/1; Perisha 316/1] The reason one may not rent the property to more people than one’s own family is because the possible damage that the property can incur from having more people use it. [Kesef Kedoshim 316/1]

[3] Kesef Kedoshim 316/1

[4] Aruch Hashulchan 316/2

[5] See the Texas Property Code 91.005

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