A Rhode Island sublease agreement is a legally-binding contract between a current renter of an apartment or home (“sublessor”) and a secondary renter (“sublessee” or “subtenant”). The sublet property can be rented out either in full or in part, such as an individual room.
In Rhode Island, subleasing may be specifically allowed or not in the lease. If it is allowed or isn’t mentioned, then a tenant may sublease their dwelling. If the lease explicitly forbids subletting, then the tenant may not sublease. In some cases, a sublease may be allowed but only with the written approval of the landlord.
To save time and ensure everything is filled out correctly, we recommend using our free Rhode Island sublease agreement builder or reading our steps on how to write a Rhode Island sublease agreement below.
How to Write a Rhode Island Sublease Agreement
- Select your property type — Identify the type of property being subleased, whether it’s a single room, a house, an apartment, or a condo.
- Name the current tenant(s) — List your name and anyone else named in the original lease. Include your mailing address, city, and state.
- List the address where rent and notices should be sent — This will usually be the same address as the rental property, otherwise, write the relevant address.
- Name the subtenant(s) — Write down the name(s) of everyone who’ll be subletting the property. Include their mailing address, city, and state.
- Name any minor children — List the names of any children under the age of 18 who’ll be living at the property.
- Name the landlord — The landlord named on the original lease should also be included in your Rhode Island sublease agreement.
- Attach a copy of the original lease — For your protection, always make a copy of the original lease when filling out a new sublease agreement. Attach it to the sublease, and make sure the subtenant reviews it.
- List the address of the property being subleased — Write down the address of the apartment, house, or condo. Include any unit or floor number.
- Include additional information about the property — When subletting an apartment or house, clearly state any additional aspects of the property that are available to the subtenant. For example, the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, parking spaces, storage units, and furnishings should all be listed.
- Date the term of the sublease — Determine the beginning and end dates of the sublease, and write them down.
- Calculate the rent — Both the full amount of rent and the portion the subtenant will pay should be noted. Indicate who should receive the rent, the date rent is due, and any special instructions regarding the payment (such as cash, check, or money order). List any utilities or additional fees owed each month and how they will be split.
- Deposits and prorated payments — Include an itemized list of payments required at the time of signing the lease, including advance rent, last month’s rent, pet deposit, security deposit, etc. Indicate whether or not the money will be held in an interest- or non-interest-bearing account. Also include the number of days the sublessor has to return any deposits to the subtenant.
- List restrictions — Any restrictions on the property must be stated, such as if smoking is prohibited or if pets are allowed.
Rhode Island 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 Rhode Island. Once you’ve filled out a Rhode Island 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 Rhode Island laws regarding the eviction process, security deposits, and all other landlord-tenant matters.
Rhode Island Landlord-Tenant Laws: Chapter 34-18 of the Rhode Island General Laws (Residential Landlord and Tenant Act)
In Rhode Island, a sublessor must:
- Give a subtenant five days (5) written notice to pay rent or leave
- Return the security deposit within twenty days (20) of the end of the sublease
- Provide thirty days (30) written notice of your intent to not renew the sublease and/or original lease
Rhode Island Sublease FAQs
Is subletting illegal in Rhode Island?
No, is not illegal in Rhode Island. Subleasing isn’t explicitly addressed in the Rhode Island Residential Landlord and Tenant Act.
Can a tenant sublet without permission in Rhode Island?
While there are no laws explicitly addressing subleasing, it is always a good practice to get written permission from your landlord before subletting. Most landlords will require a sublessee to complete a rental application form.
How to get out of a Rhode Island sublease agreement?
To get out of a Rhode Island sublease agreement as the sublessor:
- For a week-to-week lease, 10-day written notice before the termination is required.
- For a month-to-month lease, 30-day notice prior to the date specified is required.
- For a yearly lease with no end date, a 3-month notice is necessary.
Remember: If the sublease has no specific end date, the same state guidelines for terminating standard leases apply.
To get out of a Rhode Island sublease agreement as the subtenant:
- Ask your sublessor if they’re willing to end the sublease early.
- Attempt to find a replacement subtenant if your sublessor agrees.