In summary, entering into a lease or a rental agreement should be guided by the principles and provisions of a contract hence the justification of the various types of tenants such as a co-tenant, roommate, assignee, and a subtenant.
Co-tenants refer to two or more tenants renting the same property under the same lease or rental agreement. They share same legal rights and responsibilities and therefore are jointly and severally liable. This means that they are obligated to pay rent for the whole property, house or apartment even when others fail to pay. Co-tenants on the other hand have no ability to terminate another co-tenant’s tenancy and only the landlord can terminate or evict a co-tenant.
Roommate; - Two or more people typically unrelated living or occupying the same rental at the same time sharing rent. A roommate is usually but not always a co-tenant.
Subtenant; - Is a person living in a rental unit but has not signed a lease or rental agreement.
Assignee on the other hand is a tenant who has been given all the tenancy rights and responsibilities by another tenant through an assignment. As opposed to the subtenant, an assignee rents directly from the landlord. The assignment gives the second tenant exclusive rights and responsibilities hence relieving the first tenant of any rights and responsibilities whatsoever.