500. Renting One’s Business for Shabbos

73:6 If a non-Jew built a building for a Jew by working impermissibly on Shabbos, it would be best for the Jew to act stringently and not even enter the building. There are, however, many conflicting laws and opinions in the matter. (There are leniencies – see, for example, Mishnah Brurah 244:20. Please consult your rabbi regarding questions of practical application.)

A Jew may rent his field or his mill to a non-Jew even though the non-Jew will perform work there on Shabbos. One may not, however, rent his bathhouse to a non-Jew. If the bathhouse belongs to a non-Jew and the Jew merely rents it, an authority must be consulted as to what to do with it on Shabbos. A person who collects taxes, or has an inn, a brick factory, a glass factory, or something similar, must consult an authority about renting their business on Shabbos. (The basis of this halacha is that some businesses are common to rent out and others are not. People will assume the mill is rented if they see it open on Shabbos but such is not the case with the bathhouse. Ultimately, what is permitted and forbidden to rent on Shabbos depends largely on local practices – Mishnah Brurah 243:8.)