If My Roommate Leaves, Am I Responsible For The Rent?

So, your roommate has decided to move out before your lease is up — are you now responsible for paying the total rent? You may not like to hear it, but the answer is yes. Since you’re still occupying the space, and your lease has not yet run its course, you are liable to pay the entire rent until your lease expires.

Leases generally hold tenants jointly and independently responsible for the rent. What does that mean? Basically, a landlord can pursue either roommate for the full amount of rent due under the lease, so even if your roommate moves out, it doesn't have any bearing on your obligations under the lease.

If you’re stuck in this situation — or perhaps just fear it — here are a few tips that can help you if you find yourself in a tight spot.

  • Be honest and upfront with your landlord. Your landlord may work with you and let you out of your lease early so that they can continue to receive reliable rent checks from tenants that can afford the space.
  • Look online for another roommate. There are so many great sites out there that allow you to find responsible, reliable housemates.  Popular sites include www.Roommates.com and www.CraigsList.org.
  • Let friends and family know that you’re looking for a roommate – you never know who might know of someone who is looking for a place in your area!
  • Use social media. Send a message to your Facebook friends, or connect with people via Twitter. Get the word out that you’re looking for a roommate, and let others pass along your message.
  • Talk to your roommate. Ask their reasons for leaving, and if they’d be able to work something out with you until the lease ends.




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