A Newbie’s Guide to Subletting

For those of us who come from anywhere outside of New England, you understand the added stress of figuring out where the hell were going to go during the four month break we call summer. Do we go home and sit around with our high school friends, work at our old jobs and get antsy as we mark the days on the calendar till we can come back to school? Or, do we stay in Boston work our jobs here, take summer classes or try to even get an internship?

For those of you who prefer to stay in Boston there comes the added stress (and fun) of looking for a place to stay. Some may be lucky enough to have a friend’s guest room they could crash in over the summer. But if you are like me and don’t have that luck, you are forced to sublet. For those who don’t know what a sublet is, it is basically taking over the leaser’s rent for the months you need to stay in it. The time and price depends on what you coordinate with the owner.

For a newbie, this process was stressful. I had no idea where to look and it didn’t seem like anyone else had any helpful tips to help me. I had to scour the Internet for sublets and would find one and then inevitably lose it because I closed the tab and couldn’t go down the same exact rabbit hole I went down to find it in the first place. So to make the lives of fellow newbie subletters easier, I am composing a list of links to different groups and sites to find sublets on!

Boston Housing, Rooms, Apartments, and Sublets

This is a private group on Facebook that has what seems like an endless amount of sublets ready to be picked from. Many on this group are young professionals and college students around Boston who are returning home for the summer or going to an internship in another city before they finish of their lease. I found that there are a lot of Emerson students on this page and I actually found my sublet through this group! I saw that a girl subletting was from Emerson, so I reached out via Facebook message and planned a trip to go see it. Personally, I was looking to sublet through an Emerson student just because I was afraid that other people would not be as reputable. It’d be an embarrassing first apartment story to say you were scammed out of hundreds of dollars by some random person you decided to trust. At least, if they go to Emerson there is a higher chance of you finding out who exactly scammed you. Or you’ll be lucky enough to not get scammed at all.

Boston Sublets and Subleases

This is another private group through Facebook, however this one is not as filled with Emerson students or college students. But you can still click on the person’s profile and Facebook stalk them to get a better sense of who you are actually talking to. It sounds somewhat creepy, but you can never be too careful when finding a potential home! The one thing with the Facebook groups that can be irritating is there is no way to save the sublets you were interested in. You have to scroll all the way through every time to find the one you were looking for or remember the name of the person and type that into the search. This can get even more difficult when you begin to reach out to people because you have to keep which sublet is which straight. Helpful tip for this create an Excel sheet with which sublet goes with which person!

Boston Apartments, Roommates, and Sublets

This is where the subletting can take you down an endless black hole of frustration. Notice how the two above have a VERY similar name. Having to navigate three groups with crazy similar names can feel as though you are going through the exact same site over and over again even though its new. I personally have a very short attention span and can’t handle this much similarity in one sitting. So, I suggest take breaks! Mark which sites you have visited already, which owners you have reached out to, etc. The Excel sheet will be your best friend, I promise!

The Emerson Mafia

If you go to Emerson than you have definitely heard of the notorious Emerson Mafia. This is the place any Emersonian can go to for basically anything, so of course you can find sublets all over! To make it somewhat easier to navigate, I would type in the individual search of the page the word sublet. This will allows you to search through a far more narrow amount of post and make your life a lot easier than skimming through a bunch of internship opportunities that are great, but not what you need quite yet. Again, going through Emerson gives you a sense of security because they went through what you went through or even still here! It’s nice to even have a little connection with someone before moving in with them or after them.

Sublet.com

Honestly, I don’t know what to make of this site. It offers a more organized layout to scroll through, but you can’t help but be somewhat sketched out. You have no idea who these people are or if the offer is real. When you try to reach out sometimes the site will ask you to subscribe as a member. I get that they are trying to make money, but it just turned me off from the site and made me never want to click back. The one good thing is that the site does provide a wide range of options that you do not always get through the Facebook groups.

Craigslist

So, we have all heard of craigslist. It’s a site with basically a plethora of things for sale, jobs, ext. But, we also know that this site can get creepy as hell. I mean come on, haven’t we all heard of the craigslist killer? Basically, it has the same pros and cons as Sublet.com just it’s a more well known site. Just please, if you are going to meet with someone for a sublet meet in the daylight, in a crowded area, and go with friends!

Overall, the sublet hunt is going to be stressful no matter what. But, I hope this list at least puts it all on one page for you and I swear the work you put into that Excel will save your life. When I was searching for sublets, it felt like I would never find the right fit. But, with patience, my excel sheet, and a boat load of chocolate I finally got made the plunge.

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