Getting Someone Off A Lease

Friends -

I’ve had a tenant of mine come to me wanting to get her (ex-?)husband off the lease. I’m not quite sure what to do. Do I just re-sign a new lease with only her name on it? Do we try and get the (ex-?)husband to come in and sign an agreement specifically releasing him from his obligations on the lease? Do we just change the locks and give her the new key?

Frankly I’d rather have more people obligated to pay rent than fewer. Please let me know your thoughts.



Probably easiest to just re-do the lease in her name - it would be an odd jurisdiction where you’d have trouble for releasing someone from an obligation, especially if that someone has up & gone, as MHP tenants are so prone to do.

Having more people on the lease can be good if those “more people” have income or assets to cover a default. The counterpoint is that evictions and repos can become much more complicated with more people on title. I will generally add people only if they have something that I can get to easily (land or wages), otherwise, I go for simpler approach of fewer is better.


I am not sure if this applies in every state but my son just went through this in an apartment he was in with his girlfriend. She moved out but because they had paid a deposit they had to have her come in and sign off on the lease to be able to give the deposit to my son when he moves. If she wouldnt have signed off on the lease and authorization to pay my son then he would have to wait for the deposit to be split and she would be held responsible for any damages that he left. I dont know if you charge deposits but if she left and you paid it to her and he came back saying, possibly with proof, that he paid it you may have to repay the deposit to him and have to try and get it back from her.