Can I collect from a sublet renter who agreed to rent but bailed the day she was to move in?

UPDATED: Mar 3, 2012

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Can I collect from a sublet renter who agreed to rent but bailed the day she was to move in?

I had a renter agree to sublet a room I’ve vacated temporarily. I moved everything out and declined other interested parties, however, the day she was to move in she said she had changed her mind. It took a month to find a new candidate which cost me $600. Is there any way to painlessly and easily get that money? She’s completely unresponsive to requests to discuss it. She was supposed to pay first, last and pet deposit but unfortunately the landlord hadn’t collected it yet. The day she was to move in she brought a few things by. Then out of nowhere her boxes were gone and she emailed the landlord saying that she wasn’t moving in.

Asked on March 3, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Washington


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

If you had a portion of your rental subleased and the renter backed out after having an oral or written agreeemntfrom what you have written, you would have a legal and factual basis for suing her in small claims court for the $600 that you have written about.

I would write her a demand letter for the $600 requesting payment by a certain date. If not paid by then, small claims court is your option.

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