subletting an apartment out shortterm?
May 11, 2007 8:52 AM   Subscribe

Is it feasible to rent an apartment out for a short time? Like 1-3 weeks? I will be traveling during this summer, am in a high rent area (DC) and was pondering if that was a possibility.

I see lots of ads on craigslist for shorterm sublets, and I was thinking of it as an option, especially during summer, when people are in need of more short-term leases or a place to stay that's cheaper than a hotel.

I'm in DC (Mount Pleasant), and it's a studio apt. Thoughts? Has anyone done this before? My thought was that people have had luck with it in DC, NYC, and other high rent cities.

If you have done it, how have you ensured security of your things, gotten a deposit, etc?
posted by jare2003 to Home & Garden (9 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
It's more than a possibility. I was in a graduate program that offered the option of a three-week economics refresher in DC in August for students that would then begin studies at campuses elsewhere (it was extremely logistically complicated, but it worked) and a number of my classmates had a good deal of trouble finding such short-term sublets. (I, for one, ended up having to commute from Rockville, which was a pain and a half.)

The only problem would be that of your vacancy schedule matching up with their time in town--but that would be their problem, not yours.

Security and deposits aren't that different from a longer-term sublet; the biggest help would be using a friend who is staying in town as an intermediary if necessary.
posted by kittyprecious at 9:40 AM on May 11, 2007

Not to be snarky but... google? There are tons of options out there!
posted by Pollomacho at 9:44 AM on May 11, 2007

I've had luck with the temporary housing section on cl when I moved to nyc. a post yielded me an offer from a girl to rent her studio apa on the west side for $900 for nearly 4 weeks. the photos almost made it sound too good to be true and I was a bit freaked out over having to send a certified check without having met her (I was in LA) but it turned out unbelievably well. the place was gorgeous. I did the same once more when I didn't manage to find a place in time.
posted by krautland at 9:47 AM on May 11, 2007

Response by poster: pollomacho: Oops, let me clarify.

I *HAVE* a place in DC, i'm looking to rent it out when i'm traveling and pick up a little extra cash.
posted by jare2003 at 9:57 AM on May 11, 2007

Yes, a lot of people offer short term listings on CL. Seems to be a good option for some vacationers (versus an expensive DC hotel). That is, you rent your place to someone/a couple people who are visiting DC for the week or something, and do that three times.
posted by ml98tu at 10:37 AM on May 11, 2007

Absolutely. I always prefer renting an apartment to staying in a hotel, and many people do rent their places out just while they are away on holiday.

Two bits of advice.

Get a deposit early enough to have the check clear well before the rental dates. Is common for the landlord to ask for a percentage of the cost of the stay as well. It's your decision if you want payments in certified checks or money orders to not risk bounced checks, as well as the ballance being paid in full before or at the time of rental. This will prevent you from having someone say they will take the place, then back out too late for you to find someone else.

Leave a number (and a note of handy info, like where stuff they'll need is) for the renter, in case anything goes wrong. Have a neighbor, or local friend be the person you can call to go over and help fix whatever situation might occur. They could also keep and ear & eye out to see if your place is being treated right.
posted by mattfn at 10:38 AM on May 11, 2007

Response by poster: mattfn,

Er, am I supposed to run this past the landlord? I don't have livein management - there's one office but it's in 1 of 4 buildings in my complex, and she just works for a larger management company.
posted by jare2003 at 11:14 AM on May 11, 2007

Look at your lease before you go any further. Sublets are often disallowed.
posted by Carol Anne at 12:14 PM on May 11, 2007 [1 favorite]

I actually have a friend in Logan Circle who did exactly that with her condo for the next three weeks. Just be careful of screening the person, and yes, leave a key with a friend to go check up on the place every once in a while (which is what I am doing for my friend).
posted by echo0720 at 9:00 AM on May 13, 2007

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