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A guarantor is usually a family member over the age of 18, who is in a strong financial situation.
When a person agrees to become a guarantor, they will be responsible for paying the rent, if the tenant isn’t able to pay. They will also have to pay for any damage to the property. If a guarantor doesn’t cover outstanding rent or damage costs, they could be taken to court.
This is why picking a guarantor is a big decision. Many landlords will request a guarantor, for their peace of mind that the rent will be paid for the length of the contract, if you are not able to.
The guarantor is the person who ‘guarantees’ they will pay the rent. Guarantors have to be over 18, have a good credit history and often have to have a certain amount of savings or income.
They are usually a close relative or a friend who has the capacity to pay the landlord if for any reason you can’t.
They must be a UK-resident who has known you for at least two years and can vouch for your application.
Guarantors will need to provide information to a landlord or letting agency to ensure they can take on the responsibility of being a guarantor:
Your guarantor will have to sign a contract with the letting agent or landlord. This will set out the terms of the guarantor and their responsibilities to the property.
Most contracts will state that a guarantor is liable to cover any unpaid rent for the length of the tenancy. They can also be liable for fines that are levied for non-payment of rent or damages.
Make sure both you and guarantor are fully aware of the terms of the contract, and they accept their responsibilities.
If you are unclear on any of the terms and conditions set out in the contract, please speak to the landlord or the letting agent before you sign.
There are lots of different situations where you might need to provide a guarantor.
It is always best to check the terms of the contract thoroughly, but most guarantor agreements end once the tenancy has ended. Your contract should state when the guarantor’s responsibilities will end.
If there is rent outstanding, the landlord can refuse to end the agreement.
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