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Leasing Definitions - What is a "Sublease?"

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Definition: In commercial real estate, a sublease is a lease (rental agreement) between a tenant who already holds a lease to a commercial space or property and someone (the sublessee) who wants to use part or all of the tenant's space. In a sublease, the tenant assigns certain rights that they already hold to the leased property, to the sublessee.

Sublessees pay rent directly to the rightful tenant (sublessor) to either share the space with the sublessor or take over the entire space from the sublessor.

A sublessor cannot legally assign rights in a sublessee that the sublessor does not also have rights to in their own lease. Additionally, a sublessor cannot sublease unless they are permitted to do so in their own lease.

Related Terms:

Articles Related To Commercial Leasing

Also Known As: Assignment of Rights to Property; Rental Agreement
Common Misspellings: Sub-Lease

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