Reasons to Lower the Required Rent on Your Sublet

By Victoria Robertson on October 13, 2017

Subletting your apartment is extremely stressful. In addition, most students aren’t even aware of the steps involved in subletting an apartment. However, most students, at one point or another, will have to sublet their apartment (whether due to study abroad or summer vacation).

So how do you sublet your apartment successfully? And what do you do if you aren’t finding anyone, but you can’t afford to pay the rent yourself?

Here are six reasons to lower your asking rent for a sublet.

1. You aren’t getting any responses

If you’ve posted an ad for a sublet and haven’t gotten a single response, you should look at the asking rent. Most likely, your asking price is too high, and students aren’t interested.

Of course, there are other reasons for which students may not be interested in your apartment, but you always want to have this one in the back of your mind. Take a look at your posting, make sure you are highlighting the best aspects and truly consider whether or not your cost is too high for what you’re offering.

The more you really delve into your offer and adjust accordingly, the more likely you are to get a bite.

2. Competition

How many apartments are looking for sublets? Are there many apartments available near you? Are they offering apartments for less money? How does your apartment compare?

If you aren’t getting enough responses, these are questions you’ll want to consider. Competition for sublets on a college campus is very high, which means that you will have to be negotiable in your asking price. If you have nicer apartments around you going for less money, you are definitely asking too much.

So consider your personal budget, but also consider the competition and what they’re offering at what price. At least then you understand what you’re working with.

3. Time of year

Are you looking for a summer sublet? Or just someone to stay over winter break? Or maybe even a full semester?

Time of year makes a huge difference when you’re asking for someone to sublet. Many students leave campus over the summer, but some need an apartment for those months. You may have more of a chance in finding someone during this time, so long as you are posting competitive prices (think about it, competition is also high at this time because most students leave for the summer and will be subletting).

Of course, during the school year, you may encounter students looking to leave a dorm room, or that are dealing with bad roommates and looking to make a move, or even transfer students looking for a place. This is a time when competition isn’t so high so you can raise your asking price a bit more.

Basically, you’ll want to really take a look at the time of year and adjust your prices accordingly, or you’ll have a hard time finding someone to sign on.

4. Location

While you may not really be considering this (as college campuses are fairly easy to get around), location is very important when subletting. Some students really want to be as close to campus as possible, and for that reason, they are looking for apartments closer to campus. So if your apartment is rather far from campus, you’ll want to lower your price a bit to compensate.

If you’re closer to campus, you may want to raise your price a little bit. Also consider, however, that you shouldn’t be asking for more than the rent is worth. That should truly be your maximum.

5. Consider your offer

It’s very important that you consider what you’re offering to subtenants when you’re posting your asking price. For example, if you have many on-site amenities and are located central to campus, you can ask more than say an apartment where you’ll be living with several other people and need to take a bus to campus.

Basically, you want to look at what your apartment complex offers and highlight this, and set your asking price accordingly. Don’t undersell yourself, but don’t pretend your apartment is worth more than it actually is either. Just be realistic.

6. What can you afford?

While this seems like an odd question, this does matter.

If you truly can’t afford to pay your rent and desperately need a sublet, don’t go too low in the asking price, but maybe get a little creative with your advertising. If you can afford to pay a small amount, start your asking price higher, but come down as necessary.

While you certainly don’t want to come out behind, you also don’t want to ask for so much that you’ll never find someone anyway.

When subletting an apartment, it’s important to consider your asking price, as this is really going to be a driving force behind finding the right candidate. You certainly don’t want to pay the person’s rent on your own, but you also want to consider the market you’re dealing with.

Basically, start out high, gauge the market, and adjust accordingly. If you’ve decided subletting is right for you, you need to ensure that you’re flexible and ready to adjust your prices as needed.

Good luck!

Victoria is a dedicated writer who graduated from the University of Illinois with a Bachelor of Arts in English. She currently writes freelance pieces for various sites and works in Marketing for Myndbee Inc., promoting their current mobile app, Picpal.

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