A simple guide to securing a sublet in Los Angeles

Finding a sublet in Los Angeles is easy as long as you know the tricks! Learn about the best websites to use and how to rate apartments here.

Editorial Team

By Editorial Team

Downtown Los Angeles in California

Whether you’re looking to make it in Hollywood or just want to enjoy the California sunshine, finding sublets in Los Angeles is the perfect way to get to know the city.

A shorter-term rental apartment lets you ease your way into the scene, and it’s also a great way to experience a new neighborhood without a big commitment.

Of course, not all temporary housing in Los Angeles is created equal!

It’s important to do your research and exercise a fair amount of common sense while you search for a new place.

This guide will address every step of the search for Los Angeles accommodation, from what to know before you start your housing search, to which websites are best for sublets in Los Angeles to how to use social media to maximize your chances of finding your dream apartment.

Let’s jump in!

view of LA city with Griffith Observatory

A few things to consider before searching for a sublet in Los Angeles

It’s a good idea to figure out your budget for housing before you start looking for a new apartment in Los Angeles.

Unfortunately, LA is one of the most expensive cities on the West Coast. You may want to consider living with a roommate or two if you cannot afford to rent a studio or a one-bedroom apartment on your own.

As you are calculating your monthly housing budget, be sure to include the approximate cost of utilities like electricity, gas, Internet, and water.

Although the individual bills may not be so high, the total adds up quickly!

It’s also a good idea to familiarize yourself with some of the most popular and safest neighborhoods in and around LA to make it easier to filter through search results.

Someone who is all about clubbing in West Hollywood probably won’t want to sublease in Reseda.

Similarly, if you are looking for temporary housing in Los Angeles with young children you will want to be sure the schools are good.

There are a number of websites that specialize in sublets, and they are a great place to begin your search.

Start searching for sublets in these best platforms below

Are you ready to jump in?

Here are four of the best websites to find sublets in Los Angeles:

1. Apartments.com

This exhaustive clearinghouse for all types of housing makes it easy to find sublets in Los Angeles.

Apartments.com has thousands of apartment listings for the greater Los Angeles area. You can simply use the search filters to limit yourself to short-term rentals and experiment with move-in dates to see all of the options available.

There are so many listings on Apartments.com that the results can be a little overwhelming, so it’s a good idea to use the filters under the More tab to select specific amenities or neighborhoods while you search for temporary housing in Los Angeles.

2. Craigslist

It may take old school approach and is a bit ugly, but Craigslist is still a great place to start your housing search.

As with Apartments.com, you can find every type of accommodation on Craigslist.

In order to only see sublets in Los Angeles, be sure to search within the sublets/temporary housing subcategory.

Craigslist has apartments throughout LA and the surrounding area. A good ad will have all of the need-to-know information like the cost of rent and the date the unit is available listed right in the title.

Unfortunately, not all Craigslist ads include photos.

On the other hand, with Craigslist you can simply call, text, or email your potential new landlord without having to register to use the site or hand over your personal details.

Make sure that you check the site often for new properties, since the market for temporary housing in Los Angeles moves fast!

Busy beach in Los Angeles

3. SpareRoom

SpareRoom is another great place to find sublets in Los Angeles. This apartment listings website is a little different from clearinghouses like Apartments.com and Craigslist.

Rather than just showing you ads of apartments, SpareRoom matches people who are looking for a short-term rental space or sublet with people who are looking to move out early.

There are also professionally managed furnished rooms on SpareRoom that may or may not be what you’re looking for in temporary housing in Los Angeles.

4. Sublet.com

The name says it all – this apartment rental website specializes in sublets. This database of temporary housing in Los Angeles has listings with photos and other important details.

You can also find a limited number of furnished apartments, vacation rentals, and people looking for new roommates.

Be sure to pay attention to the dates listed in the ads, since sometimes individuals looking to sublet their places will have some restrictions. For example, some owners want to be able to re-occupy their apartments for a week or two in the middle of a longer sublease arrangement.

Overall, Sublet.com is the easiest to manage for Los Angeles sublets because it doesn’t try to list every type of apartment, house, hotel, and short-term rental in its database.

Look for a furnished rental in LA

Flexible short term rentals are another great way to secure temporary housing in Los Angeles.

For example, Blueground has fully furnished, move-in ready studio, one, two, and three bedroom apartments all over the city.

All of Blueground’s furnished apartments in Los Angeles have appliances, including full kitchens.

You will also find a variety of amenities like gyms, pools, rooftop lounges, and more.

fully equipped kitchen in a Blueground furnished apartment

The Blueground team even furnishes their temporary housing in Los Angeles with custom high-tech extras like SmartTVs and Marshall speakers to elevate the guest experience.

One advantage furnished rentals have over sublets in Los Angeles is that you have total flexibility over your move-in and move-out dates.

If you are subletting from an individual, you are bound by their schedule.

You may want to move to Los Angeles in April and stay until January, but they are looking for someone from March to October, for example.

A furnished rental is also a great way to scope out the city without committing to a year-long lease or the purchase of a home.

Check classified ads to locate a good sublet

The classifieds section of a local newspaper is always worth a browse when you are apartment hunting.

For Los Angeles sublets, the Los Angeles Times is the best way to go.

You should also look for free local newspapers and magazines in the neighborhoods you’re targeting in your apartment search. These free publications have a surprising number of hyperlocal deals.

In addition to newspaper classifieds, check out bulletin boards at laundromats, coffee shops, bars, and restaurants to see if you spot any “Subletter Wanted” flyers.

Harness the power of social media

Your social feeds can also help you find Los Angeles accommodation.

Facebook, especially, can be a great place to find a sublet.

Check out Facebook Marketplace to see who might be looking for a subletter.

If you’re looking for sublets in Los Angeles, be sure to type “sublet” into the search box to filter our year-long rentals.

los angeles skyline at sunset

One advantage of this approach is using Facebook Messenger to talk with your new landlord. This will help you find out everything you need to know about the place without having to give out your personal information.

You could also post on your own Facebook and Instagram feeds to see if anyone in your network has a connection to an apartment in Los Angeles that might be your perfect short term rental solution.

What to look for in an LA sublet

First of all, be sure you have picked 3-5 neighborhoods to begin your search.

Make sure they all fit your budget and have a reasonable commute to your office, if you already have a job lined up in LA.

If you own a car, you will also want to find out about parking options in the neighborhoods you are targeting.

Are there parking garages? Street parking? Numbered lots for the buildings?

Every area is a little bit different in terms of parking.

Many sublets in Los Angeles come with rules about pets – so if you have a dog or a cat be sure to mention that right away.

You also want to be sure that the sublet lease is long enough to cover your time in LA, unless you want to move around.

When you view an apartment, use your phone to make notes about the unit and building.

Is there a pool? A gym? A rooftop lounge?

Looking at a variety of apartments in different neighborhoods with different amenities will give you a sense of relative value.

Finally, since you will likely be living with someone else’s furniture and decorations, be sure to discreetly take a few pictures while you are viewing an apartment.

When you are deciding between two similar apartments, they will come in very handy. It may just come down to who installed ugly wallpaper in their kitchen.

Now that you know all of the tricks to finding great sublets in Los Angeles, you’re practically assured of a smooth move.

Best of luck to you in your apartment search!

Editorial Team

Editorial Team

The Blueground editorial team covers the best things to see, do, and experience in our cities around the world.