A Colorado sublease agreement allows an existing tenant to rent (or “sublet”) all or part of their rental property to another tenant (or “subtenant”), as long as the original lease doesn’t prohibit it. Subletting can be a good way to earn some extra income by bringing in a roommate or to ensure that your property remains occupied while you’re out of town for an extended period of time.
Yet subletting comes with some unique legal risks, and it’s important to familiarize yourself with Colorado’s laws, rules, and regulations governing sublease agreements.
To save time and ensure everything is filled out correctly, we recommend using our free Colorado sublease agreement builder or reading our steps on how to write a Colorado sublease agreement below.
How to Write a Colorado Sublease Agreement
All tenants in Colorado who wish to sublet their property must seek their landlord’s permission first, even if the rental agreement allows subletting.
The below information must be provided to the landlord before the sublease agreement can be executed. This information lets the landlord know the parameters of the sublease, and who you’re planning to have as a subtenant.
The landlord may require the subtenant to undergo the same screening requirements you did as a tenant, including a criminal background or credit check.
- First, list the property type and address of the rental property — The most common are houses, apartments, or condos.
- List the names of all current tenants, as well as all proposed subtenants — Also identify these names by title (e.g. “subtenant” or “original tenant”). The rest of the sublease agreement can just use these terms instead of listing the names again.
- If the tenant would prefer to receive rent payments and notices at a different address, list this address — In some cases, a subtenant and tenant will live under the same roof, making this step unnecessary. But if the tenant is living elsewhere, it’s important for the subtenant to know how to get in touch.
- List the name of the landlord and attach a copy of the original lease — The subtenant must affirm that they’ve reviewed the original lease and will comply with its provisions.
- List the term of the sublease agreement — If the sublease has a fixed term, include these dates. If it’s a week-to-week or month-to-month lease, specify this and list the end date of the original lease so the subtenant understands they cannot stay beyond this date.
- List the rent amount and due dates — Your sublease agreement should set out both the total rental rate, and the portion of the rent the subtenant must pay. If the tenant and subtenant are splitting utility costs, specify this as well.
- Include any additional restrictions that aren’t contained in the original lease — If you’d like to keep the subtenant out of your bedroom or want to preserve your reserved parking spot, make this clear in the sublease agreement to avoid future misunderstanding.
Colorado Sublease Laws
You should check your original lease agreement to see if you’re allowed to sublet your apartment. It’s recommended that a tenant receive written permission from their landlord before subletting in Colorado. Once you’ve filled out a Colorado sublease agreement, you will be responsible for your subtenant and liable for any violations of the original lease.
A sublessor must honor the terms of the sublease agreement (as well as the original lease) and follow all Colorado laws regarding the eviction process, security deposits, and all other landlord-tenant matters.
Colorado Landlord-Tenant Laws: Title 38, Article 12 of the Colorado Revised Statutes
In Colorado, a sublessor must:
- Give a subtenant three days (3) written notice to pay rent or leave
- Return the security deposit within one month (1) of the end of the sublease unless otherwise agreed upon, and no more than sixty days (60)
- Provide the following days written notice of your intent to not renew the sublease and/or original lease depending on how long the tenant has lived at the rental:
- Ninety-one days (91) for a tenancy for one year or longer
- Twenty-eight days (28) for a tenancy of six months or longer but less than a year
- Twenty-one days (21) for a tenancy of one month or longer but less than six months
- Three days (3) for a tenancy of one week or longer but less than one month, or a tenancy at will
- One day (1) for a tenancy for less than one week
Colorado Sublease FAQs
Is subletting legal in Colorado?
Yes, subletting is legal in Colorado unless the original lease agreement specifically forbids it or the landlord reasonably refuses a request to sublet. A landlord may reasonably refuse your request for the following reasons:
- Subtenant has poor credit history
- Subtenant fails a background check
- Subtenant doesn’t meet minimum income requirements
Can a tenant sublet without permission?
No, all tenants must receive written permission from their landlord before they can sublet a rental property. And if the original lease agreement prohibits subletting, the landlord can deny a sublease request for any reason, no matter how unreasonable it may seem — since the original lease agreement doesn’t allow it.
When can a landlord refuse a request to sublet?
If a tenant requests permission to sublet their rental property, the landlord may not “unreasonably” deny this request. Some “reasonable” reasons for denying a request include the proposed subtenant’s criminal history, their record of prior evictions or foreclosures, or their inability to pass a credit check or provide proof of current income. In other words, if a landlord wouldn’t have rejected the original tenant for a specific reason, they can’t reject a subtenant for that reason either.
How can tenants terminate a sublease agreement?
Under Colorado law, to evict a subtenant or terminate a sublease agreement, the tenant (sublessor) must follow the same eviction process that their landlord would need to follow to evict them.