HELP, I Can’t Get A Guarantor

Help, I need somebody

On various occasions I’ve had prospective tenants ask me what they should do if they’re unable to get a rental guarantor. Personally, as a Landlord, I would feel extremely uncomfortable about giving tenancy to anyone that couldn’t arrange a Guarantor. Why? Because I’d only be thinking the following…

Why doesn’t anyone trust this person enough to be their Guarantor?

Of course, that’s just me being cynical (by nature). There are potentially endless amounts of genuine reasons why someone is unable to arrange a Guarantor. However, regardless of the justifications, it’s still a problem for Landlords. Or at least, it should be a problem.

As a tenant, I imagine it’s extremely frustrating to be deprived from renting a property because of an external factor like the inability to arrange a Guarantor, because at the end of the day, the lack of Guarantor isn’t really a reflection of how good or bad someone will make as a tenant. But unfortunately, they are rather necessary for the landlord’s own security. Landlords need to put certain security measures in place to secure their investment.

Most letting agents should require tenants to have a guarantor, but ultimately it is down to the Landlords discretion. If a landlord wants to take on tenants that don’t have a guarantor, they can do so at their own risk.

How to substitute for a Guarantor

There are ways tenants can try to persuade landlords to consider accepting their tenancy without a Guarantor. I’ve found that the methods I’m about to discuss work quite well.

A Guarantor is all about providing the landlord with a sense of security. A landlord wants to know that if their tenant falls in arrears or damages the property, he/she has a security cushion to soften the blow. So as long as a tenant is able to provide a substitute form of security, then the landlord might be willing to make a compromise.

Method 1- Rent Guarantee and Legal Expenses Insurance

A prospective tenant could suggest paying for a rent guarantee and legal expenses insurance policy. What is that exactly? It’s an insurance policy for Landlords that covers rent if tenants fall in arrears. Additionally, if the tenant runs up any legal costs (e.g eviction costs), then the insurance company will insure the costs.

I’ve got policies like this in place, and have actually had to claim before when my tenant fell into arrears. It’s actually a pretty good substitute (if not better) than a guarantor. However, I recommend having both in place. Policies can vary in price, but it cost me approximately £120 for a year, which I think it pretty damn good.

If you, as a tenant, are willing to pay that extra insurance cost, it maybe just enough to clinch the property you want to rent, without a guarantor. Here’s more details on Rent Guarantee And Legal Expenses Insurance.

Just to clarify, landlords can take this out at their own will, and many do.

Method 2- Increase the security deposit amount

Another way of persuading the landlord is by increasing the security deposit amount.

Security deposits are most often used for the following:

  • to clean the property at the end of the lease term, if the tenant did not leave the property in a clean condition;
  • to pay utility bills, if the tenant did not pay the bills; or
  • to pay rent, if the tenant did not pay the rent.

In order for a tenant to persuade the landlord, he/she could offer two months worth of deposit, as opposed to the regular one month. This should provide the landlord with a better sense of security.

It’s also important for tenants to be aware of the landlord’s legal obligation to secure the deposit into a Tenancy Deposit Scheme. This means that the landlord won’t be able to unfairly keep the deposit at the end of the tenancy- which is an important security measure for tenants if they’re going to be paying more than the average deposit.

Method 3- Rent Guarantee and Legal Expenses Insurance & Rent Guarantee and Legal Expenses Insurance

If a tenant is in love with a particular property, and is willing to lick gum off the landlords shoe to secure the tenancy, then they could always combine the two methods; double the security deposit and pay for the insurance. While this particular method may significantly increase the initial costs of becoming a tenant, they should remember that they have the opportunity to regain the security deposit at the end of the tenancy (as long as they behave well), so the only real cost will be the insurance.

Method 4- Use a “Rent Guarantor Service”

This is quite bizarre.

There are now companies out there that allow tenants to pay for a Guarantor. I suspect you may have to meet some requirements, they probably won’t provide guarantors in extremely high-risk cases.

I have no idea how it all works or what the costs entail, but this website/service recently came across my radar. I’m sure there will be a premium for the service, but if you’re desperate and willing to pay for a Guarantor (presumably one that comes with good credentials) it might be worth checking out.

Final thoughts…

Personally, I would accept either of those alternatives for a Guarantor as long as the tenant scores highly in other areas, such as good references from previous landlords and employers. But as mentioned, at the end of the day, it is ultimately down to the landlords own discretion. The landlord may even decide he/she doesn’t require a Guarantor. Of course, I would question the sanity of that landlord.

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147 Comments- join the conversation...

Showing 97 - 147 comments (out of 147)
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eric 21st August, 2012 @ 19:34

hi, why is a section 21A only 8 weeks long ? for people who are on benefits 8 weeks = 4 fortnights (providing your on fortnightly pay) so that equates to just 4 payments, how in gods name can any letting agent expect unemployed people and people on other benefits to produce rent money bond money and the biggest con of them all the admin fees. since when did signing a contract and visiting a property after a phone call cost so much money and why? wouldnt that money be best used against the bond and rent for low income families? my landlord has just played a blinder and has decided to sell up, leaving me and my family of 2 just 8 weeks to either come up with almost £1500 AND a guarantor or go homeless. there needs to be some better way of helping people who have been given an eviction notice, without them having to lower there own standards and become squatters just to keep there families safe with a roof over there heads.

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Midlander 25th September, 2012 @ 08:35

"I've rented property in spain, the netherlands, USA and canada., In all these places the idea of a guarantor is unheard of and in some illegal."

@ Cath Brown
I'm beginning to wonder if this demand for guarantors, and discrimination against low earners, isn't a contravention of Human Rights. I wonder how I can find out?!

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Midlander 25th September, 2012 @ 08:37

"... without them having to lower there own standards and become squatters just to keep there families safe with a roof over there heads."

And now they can't even do that! Squatting now illegal!

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NJD 12th January, 2013 @ 12:55

Hi
I am about to move into a new property, fingers crossed.
I have paid the agency fees and the deposit and filled all forms in, I have been living with my partner for the last 3 months with her landlords permission but have not been on the forms or anything, therefore apparently my new landlord will need a guarantor. I have used my parents, they have a healthy income, and are a home owner.
The only thing I am worried about is as like most families with three kids they have had their own money problems so I am not sure just like my parents, whether they will get a good credit check? So anyone able to offer advice if they get refused as a guarantor?
Thankyou

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Midlander 12th January, 2013 @ 13:31

@NJD
If your parents have a 'healthy income' & are home owners, I shouldn't think there will be a problem but, if there is, wave goodbye to your payments to the agency including the £150 (or whatever) they charged you for referencing them!! Your deposit should be returned. No guarantor? No new property!

A light at the end of the tunnel is that very recently the govt have started looking into the ripoff business that is renting/letting agencies, presumably after many complaints from tenants. Good luck.

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NJD 12th January, 2013 @ 15:00

@Midlander
Thank you very much.

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kayleigh fidler 24th February, 2013 @ 17:56

hello my name is kayleigh i have found a place that i would like to rent but my family can not be a guarantor and then i saw this i was just wondering if you could tell me more about it and what it is as how much it would cost thank you

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Nicola 5th March, 2013 @ 18:19

Can anyone recommend a reputable place to find the rent guarantee and legal expenses insurance policies which is mentioned at the beginning of this article?

I am located in Derbyshire, but I am guessing that these days that is nt so much a problem if I can find somewhere on the internet.

I would really appreciate someone who has a bit of knowledge about what is the best company to use.

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Jilly 6th April, 2013 @ 22:19

Hi,i have just paid a holding fee of £200 to take a house off the market which i would like to move into!..i had been in contact with the estate agents 3 times before i finally went to view the property,there was never any mention of gurantor,credit check etc. either on the ad for the rental nor on the numerous phone calls we exchanged but as soon as i paid the £200 i was asked for a guarantor and when i went to pick up the forms today i noticed that there will also be a credit check done!!..had i known this i would not have even bothered viewing the house as i never get accepted for credit probably due to not being on the voters roll..i just feel duped and conned!!..i work on a zero hour contract and recieve some help from housing benefit!

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Midlander 7th April, 2013 @ 01:13

@Jilly
It is very unusual for a lettings agency not to ask you right at the start how you will pay the rent. And ideally, you yourself should have asked them what their policy was towards HB tenants. All of them do credit checks & charge you for it, whether you are working or unemployed. However, if none of this was ever mentioned (are you sure it's not stated on their website?) then you must insist they return the £200 to you. Good luck.

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Jilly 7th April, 2013 @ 18:09

Hi Midlander

I never asked because i have never had this sort of problem with renting before!..i usually just pick a house go view it and decide yes or no!,all this gaurantor and credit check stuff is new to me!,it does seem that most estate agents/landlords are going down this route now though!..and no it wasn't mentioned on the ad for the house at all!..just DSS accepted..no mention of credit check or guarantor!..ok its only £200 but its money that could have went toward a deposit for somewhere else if i don't get this one..which i doubt i will! :( Thanks for the good luck! :)

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emma 11th April, 2013 @ 21:57

Hi
I've been accepted for a property but my guarantor has had to pull out as the day we need to sign the papers he isn't available im thinking of offering the months rent they are asking plus another month on top would you find this acceptable im gonna be so gutted if I cannot get the property.

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Jilly 11th April, 2013 @ 22:26

I tried that Emma!..didn't work!! :( and yeah i was gutted!! ..

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Midlander 14th April, 2013 @ 06:37

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-22095712

The govt is trying to get to grips with all this at last.

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Jilly 14th April, 2013 @ 12:52

Shall have a read Midlander! ;)

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Jennie 16th September, 2013 @ 20:03

I'm an international student looking to move from Swansea to Cardiff and I was asked for a gurantor which I provided and the landlord refused staying he has to be a uk homeowner... Iv never heard of this before so I asked for another alternative and he asked for three months rent upfront which again I provided courtesy of my parents and I was still refused... I can't find a house who is not asking for uk homeowner as a gurantor(I don't know any). I'm not working either so they all get sceptical when I say I'm an international student...iv never defaulted on my rent or bills as my parents make sure everything gets paid... I don't know what to do to get a flat please help or advises anyone would be greatly appreciated.

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Chris 16th September, 2013 @ 20:11

Hi Jennie,

Welcome to the UK & the bullshit we tenants have to put up with.

My advice at your University there will be a housing officer of some description, they will have a list of University approved landlords.

I hope this helps,

Chris

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Chris 16th September, 2013 @ 20:17

Jennie,

If this landlord is on the University list complain to the housing people about this.

Your course acceptance and parents or family member anywhere should be enough guarantor for anyone when your at University.

Chris

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Vivian 17th September, 2013 @ 21:14

Hi, Jennie! Considering that to be an international student and get a visa you have to have proved you have living expenses for an entire year, they should be THRILLED to have you. :p Talk to the uni's international office; they should have people whose job it is to help you with things like this.

I'm about to be in a similar boat--I've been an international student for the last 5 years and am about to take up a job at another uni. My family aren't in the UK so don't count as guarantors, and even if they did probably wouldn't--where I come from, we don't expect other people to sign on to our credit things. (I have a few friends who own property, but wouldn't ask them in any case, because frankly it's bullshit to ask someone else to promise you'll pay your bills when you're an adult.) I can give them a reference that I've paid my rent consistently for my entire adult life, and a copy of my employment contract if they so desire, but this is one thing on which I don't think I'll be assimilating into the local culture. Because it's stupid.

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Dawn 6th October, 2013 @ 08:57

Thank you for writing an informative and helpful article for someone like myself who does have genuine reasons for not having a guarantor.
It may help my son and I not to be homeless in 3 weeks time.

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Nick 12th November, 2013 @ 12:27

I too think that insisting someone has a guarantor is a ridiculous thing. I am currently renting and looking to move because of the neighbour from hell and because i was bankrupt 4 years ago this will be reflected in the credit checks they carry out. However, I am completely debt free, have a good regular income, have been in employment with the same company for 28 years and have never been in arrears with my rent and always had good relationships with my landlords. I also keep the rental properties very clean and tidy and never cause any nuisance to other neighbours. In fact i would go so far to say that i am the perfect tenant in every way. What i find so insulting is that just because i was bankrupt several years ago this is going to prejudice me for the rest of my life and it simply is so unfair. There are people out there with really good credit ratings but are in debt up to their necks while I on the other hand, have no debts or arrears whatsoever. Figure that one out.

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Andrew Ed 28th November, 2013 @ 08:13

I'm currently staying at a friends but have to get out.

I had to leave my flat 8 weeks ago in Brighton as my partner walked out and I couldn't afford to stay there. Got all my stuff in storage and parted in good ways with the landlord.

Unfortunately I don't have a UK home owner guarantor and the agents down here charge upto 300 in "admin" fees which are non refundable. I'm finding it really stressful, I work full time and have quite a good job. Everywhere here seems to want to screw you over with fees and charge over the top rents and ask for stupid amounts of money up front just to get a roof.
Then all the times you book in for a viewing and take some time out of work, turn up and no one turns up. Ring the agents and they will say oh sorry this let this morning. Letting agents seem to be nothing but crooks

I spoke to the council and they said I am legally defined as homeless as I have no permanent residence. One of the things the guy recommended was to look at gumtree to see if anyone is offering a Sublet?
I was quite shocked as I thought this wasn't even legal and this is someone at the council recommending I do this. Shocking!

This country, my home is Fucked big time

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shannon 25th June, 2014 @ 01:07

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Ema 2nd July, 2014 @ 22:01

There are numerous reasons why people do not have a guarantor. Mine is because I have a Mother in a council house. My brother and sister are in council houses. My friends are in private or council houses. At a time of sky rocketing house prices to assume the individual has a bad reputation is narrow minded and quite offensive.

Someone on housing benefits (and has written proof of entitlement etc) is much more reliable than so many of the working population. However, someone hears the term benefit and immediately assumes scrounger.

As for references, what of your previous houses were so badly run (bullying and harassment all on police record) that you can't go to them for references? You ask how do people end up in this position???

Because majority of the time, landlords go by what's on paper instead of true fact. Put me up against 10 working people I bet I have a better personal record. Never missed a rent paid full deposits and done whatever he landlord has asked. You should take people on housing. They're often so scared of being homeless (because no one will actually look at the finer details) that they'll jump through hoops.

In terms of pricing and rents as well, if a single room was remotely worth £500pm, housing benefit would have been raised to match that, like they do wih the cost of living.

Greedy landlords , taking taking taking. Instead of saying no upon hearing no guarantor or reference ask what they can offer. So many empty holes would be filled up so quickly of you weren't so stubborn. You go the the council, they say go private. Privates too expensive go to the streets and rob steal and purge. It's a vicious cycle, end of the day narrow mindedness prevails.

Why are you blaming us when your the problem in the housing crisis???

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holly 14th July, 2014 @ 15:48

Im 20 i don't have much family and all on low income plus relationship with family isn't good, i have been in foster care now in supported lodgings paying some rent through social services but been told i have to move out by the end of the month hosing dose not seem to help as don't see me as a care leaver as i was 17 when put into care rather then 16 or under. Im struggling to find somewhere accept on private rent i don't get enough money so now moving with partner who has no family whatsoever who has to move out as well who is 23 with sone dissabilities which means we now have enough money to get somewhere but then found out we need a guarantor but with no one with enough money or close to us and with disabilities and currently unemployed looking for work we cant get anywhere a friend has told me of helping hands to be ur guarantor but says on website only accepts people in uni as a student!! Every thing i do gets thrown back in my face, i have never been late on paying don't have much money hate owing money what can i do there must be someone that can help me in sure im not the only 1 in this situation

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Jennifer 14th July, 2014 @ 16:58

Hi HOLLY, I know how terrible you must feel... I would advise the best for you to do would be to find a private landlord . They almost always accept without asking for guarantor. Try looking on gumtree and easyroommate. If you can't find anything suitable, put up an advert of what you are looking for and can afford and you will be contacted by a lot of private landlords. I hope this helps.

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evie 21st July, 2014 @ 10:44

none of this applies for someone in my situation where I don't have friends or family to be a guarantor I am a child out of care and homeless at 18 but still no tenant is liable to let me move in without a guarantor and my fees are being paid by the council and social services so I have no way of paying extra without an income...... help???

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syed 5th September, 2014 @ 17:59

looking for Rent Guarantee And Legal Expenses Insurance.can anyone suggest how to get the one for £120 a year or lower.

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Dennis 23rd October, 2014 @ 09:22

Hi, no matter u want rent a student accommodation or find a private landlord, u can find a UK guarantor. Im a overseas student and just got the help housing hand, search them and they can help u with that.

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Bart 3rd November, 2014 @ 23:28

All things reffering to life in UK just create a constant problem.Law here is ridicolous.Honest hard working people or even people who made some mistakes in past are not able to get a room not mentioning about a house!We are all human with equal rights yet all in favour of owners.Food is overpriced and sprayed wih chemicals,same with air,transport is on time but way too expensive for average Joe and overcrowded,any kind of entartaiment or free time sucks money iut of our already emty pockets.<forget about help from hospital,police or HMRV or anybody related to public services...we hold our heads just little above the water level and it seems many of us will drown in this muddy ocean.constant wool over our eyes...I feel sorry for everyone who has to go thru this bullshit.Be strong folks!theres always breaking point to turn things over!

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iva had enough 12th January, 2015 @ 19:19

So much i want to say, but.. ot today.. mice, NOISE.. lots of, greedy LL, drugs, robbery, thefts, LL lets em self into flats whenever to snoop or steal, hb fraud, lots of. No heating at all, no hot water at all.. bang bang, place like a building site, looks like steptoe n sons yard minus the horse n cart.. fucking existance, at least hell is warm.. when i move, i got plenty of pics n video to put a stop to this.. makes me want to end it all cos after leaving the last time to spend 4 months sleeping in tents and doorways i had to return to same building haha.. what a sick joke.. no wonder peeps finally flip the fuck out and end up on the news with a body count next to a pic of when they were alive..

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confused as hell 5th February, 2015 @ 10:37

I find the whole process utterly bizarre.

My situation is this:
I have no employment, or past employers that i would know how to contact. I have never rented in my life. So i have nobody who could possibly give me any relevant references. My parents are on sickness benefits, i have nobody who would be able to act as a guarantor. I have approx. £150,000 savings in the bank. I'm currently researching starting my own internet business.

From everything i have read, i would find it impossible to rent somewhere for £500 a month, even though i could afford to pay the rent for the next 20 years without ever earning a penny of income in that time. But someone who has a job earning 25k a year, who could get the sack next week, would be able to rent anything off anybody without a problem. Somebody explain to me how the hell that makes any kind of sense whatsoever!

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Helen 5th February, 2015 @ 10:57

@confused as hell
Simply offer to pay 6 months' rent in advance & you'll get a place easily.

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confused as hell 5th February, 2015 @ 11:21

I have tried several estate agents and got nowhere with them. They looked at me like i was mental. I didn't mention how much savings i have, frankly it's none of their business, i just answered the question of how i would pay the rent if i don't have a job by saying i have savings. One did say they had a flat in a really shit area (my words, not hers!) and she knew the landlord personally and said she would probably go for it if i met her. I politely declined. If i'm going to pay £450 to live in a dump worth 50k, i may as well just buy it and save myself the rent! The reason i don't want to, is because i don't want to live in a shit area.

I have thought maybe if i bought somewhere cheap, i could get a letting agent to rent it for me and that would persuade them to rent somewhere else to me and offset the payments?? Seems rather convoluted, but i'm running out of ideas! Anybody know if that is something they may be likely to do?

I don't get the whole renting process. I've never come across anything this weird before in my life. I'm used to paying for things and you get them. Hotels never expect you to jump through all these insane hoops, you just book the thing and pay. You have the money, you get the room. I don't understand why renting isn't that easy. If truth be known, i'd probably pay £750 a month for a £500 flat just to not have to go through all this f*@K!ng hassle. To be brutal, i have more important ways to spend my time than all this bullshit just to save a few grand over a year. I also have lots of health issues, including stress, i just dont this f*@k!ng crap. It's like being in kindagarten ffs.

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Benji 5th February, 2015 @ 20:43

Hotels never expect you to jump through all these insane hoops, you just book the thing and pay. You have the money, you get the room. I don't understand why renting isn't that easy.

Because if you don't pay £25 for a hotel room for the night, it is a criminal offence- theft.

If you don't pay £25000 for renting a property for a year, it isn't.

Which is why landlords need to be very, very careful who they rent to.

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CJS 31st March, 2015 @ 11:18

The government doesn't care about the people. They just want to line their own pockets and make people who struggle for money and on low wages suffer. Rent is way too high and needs to be brought down or capped. Agencies need to be completely changed. Why so much money for admin? Half the cost and only if the tenant gets somewhere. They should be there to help the tenant more than the landlord. It's all to do with greed.
Guarantors should be removed from the required list. Not everyone has someone who earns that or owns their own property. It is elitist and disgusting to treat people this way.
There needs to be change. The government can't govern if there are no people who agree to be governed by them.

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Kayy 27th May, 2015 @ 09:07

It's moronic to assume someone can't get a guarantor because no one trusts them.

Right now I'm trying to rent a 4/3 with some friends. My boyfriend can't get the guarantor because his mom makes less than us and his dad is absent. TWO of the guys can't do it because their parents are entirely absent from their lives.

That leaves me and the last guy.

My parents won't even co-sign a car for me. Not because they don't trust me, but because they got royally fucked when they co-signed on my sister's school loan and when she didn't pay they had to. They know that it likely wouldn't happen, but they don't want to be put in that situation.

The last guy's parents are emotionally abusive and condescending people that won't do it for that reason I just stated. His parents are so bad that when he bought an awesome computer for himself with HIS money they guilted him into giving it to his sister [Whom they favor].

And that's that. Twenty-somethings don't have friends that are about to be guarantors because they're in the same monetary situation. Make enough to pay rent, not enough to make 3x rent. It's stupid and horrible and anti-poverty.

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Matthew 29th June, 2015 @ 17:36

How do i get a garantor (sorry i can not spell)??, also im in situation, i need to move asap!!! anyone can let me know how?

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Daniel 13th July, 2015 @ 13:18

"Why doesn’t anyone trust this person enough to be their Guarantor?"

Perhaps another question might be, 'does this person come from a privileged background and have rich parents that can bale them out if things go pete tong?'

After all, even if the landlord receives no rent, they can still take their tenant to court, prosecute them and make sure that they do pay them back.

As anyone can be a landlord these days, it does appear that most landlords take a very short term approach and are only interested in covering their mortgage etc while being sure to cash in ever burgeoning housing market where demand far exceeds supply. It does seem like a fairly inexpensive solution to ask the landlord to pay around £120/year if they are concerned about the tenant not paying their rent in time. This is likely to be offset by the increase in the value of their property over the same year.

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Alex motter or two 28th July, 2015 @ 21:48

Ok so I have been living in the cottage with husband and two kids for 9 years, currently going through divorce and the tenancy agreement is under my ex name only. I contacted the landlord direct to change contract, he wants to go though agency and I'm looking at £200 extra rent as price went up in 9 years, a deposit which wasn't needed for my husband! And I need a guarantor to earn £32k. I earn £1200 a month part time mother and £1200 in child benefit, child tax, tax credit & maintenance which aren't benefit as we can all have them I am not a DSS either. Asking a friend to be a guarantor is hard and impossible, my parents are retired and live in France where they own they house so that not good either. If I don't come up with a solution soon I will be with my two kids in the street. My ex isn't earning enough to be guarantor and hasn't offer to have the kids!

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Dana 19th September, 2015 @ 11:10

I am a single mother of a disabled child, with unfortunately not much family, I am applying for my 4th house today as I am living with family members (which is overcrowded) but my father is already guarantor to my sister.

"Why would these people not trust their own friend or family to be their guarantor" or "questioning the sanity of this landlord"

Maybe when the majority of your family passes and your whole life is dedicated to a disabled child, then you will understand the frustration and the offence this post to someone like me.

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Ali 22nd September, 2015 @ 21:41

Has anybody heard of or used handing house it's charging me £400 and they will act as my guarantor?

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Helen 22nd September, 2015 @ 21:46

I think you mean Housing Hand.
http://www.housinghand.co.uk/guarantor-service/

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MEG 8th October, 2015 @ 14:06

Hi me and my husband have been given 2 months notice because our landlord is ill and can't do it anymore. I was getting disability benefit but when it changed to PIP it stopped. They said that I was fit to work even thou my condition had exactly gotten worse. So with just one wage coming in, we got into a little financial difficulties and now have a bad credit score. We have tried to rent a couple of houses and have been up front and honest with everything. The estate agents have said we need a guarantor that earns £20,0000 a year because of our past history. We have no one we know who earns that much so have said that we would willingly paid for a rent guarantee and expensive insurance but both times we have been turned down. It looks like we will be living in our car .

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Natalie 18th October, 2015 @ 17:41

The whole system in the UK does need to be looked at.

I have been stuck and homeless for a year now. I don't talk to my parents. The only contact they have is with my son. We go as far as how are you? And that is our conversation. My previous landlord took 5 years to fix a window and 2 years to fix a bath. We stopped talking after he falsely accused me of pouring water across my floor.

Before I had this full time job, I worked 4 jobs to keep enough money to pay the rent. I am a single mum and still manage to volunteer with 2 youth groups. I have had obscene offers from 'potential' landlords.

I can offer 6 months rent in advance with help from the council yet this is not enough. I have offered to pay for the landlord insurance as well. And I am still homeless. I do not know what more I can do.

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irate parent 16th November, 2015 @ 14:54

Recently I was asked by my son to be a guarantor. He is a Masters graduate on a good salary as is his partner, jointly earning in excess of 50k. He has a good credit history and good references from previous landlords. In theory this should be a dream tenant for any landlord but the landlady and letting agent requested a home owning guarantor despite this not being covered by industry guidelines in his situation. Whilst I agreed to act as guarantor in principle, I was then presented with a most intrusive questionnaire including bank account & national insurance details and much more very personal information. When I expressed concern about a) the need for a guarantor in the first place and b) the need for such in depth information for a guarantor and c) the security of that data bearing in mind a major credit referencing company has just lost 100million customers details I was told very arrogantly "take it or leave it". I was also told by the director of the letting agency that there is a move to insist on guarantors for all tenancies. I was concerned about the security of my data and despite offering other alternatives such as lending my son the full rent money to be put into an independently administered account, the letting agency refused as they wanted their boxes filled in or nothing. His partner's parents were retired and they considered them unsuitable to act as a guarantor. None of this was explained to my son before he paid the best part of £300 fees & as a result of my questioning the system they let the property elsewhere & have refused to reimburse the fees he paid.

If this is the way the letting market is going, god help anyone who is not in a position to have a guarantor. No other country has this awful rental market, even Scotland has made fee charging to tenants etc. illegal so why do we not do it in England... maybe it is because most of the landlords are supporters & financiers of the current government???

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MR ANGRY AGENT 4th February, 2016 @ 23:19

I have been a home owner, a landlord and now I'm a tenant and an estate agent.
Being an agent for me is stressful because we do understand and sympathise with your plight however this doesn't mean we can bend rules or go against a landlords specific instructions the same as a landlord can not instruct us to do something illegal or immoral. Tenant's only see it from their perspective thinking all landlords are greedy self centred heartless shits, well some are and some are not just the same as tenants.
People have to understand a landlord is not part of the council or government and owes private renters nothing other than accommodation at the market rate according to your area the property is legally compliant.
Landlords have to borrow to buy the house you rent contrary to belief they actually make little or no monthly profit on top of your rent and often subsidise the mortgage from their own funds, the excess will be used to pay buildings insurance, long term & regular maintence, gas safety checks, emergency repairs, agent fees, redecoration and the taxman plus many other expenses. A landlords profit is made on capitol growth over a 17 to 20 year period.

I hear the complaining over guarantors and bigger deposits, well I ask you what happens when a working tenant loses their job or splits from their financially contributing partner, or the DSS tenant gets sanctioned for not attending an appointment or simply the DWP cock up as they some times do plus a 100 other scenarios. The landlord suffers it directly effects his living standard, he has to worry if he can pay his/her own mortgage as well as your homes to avoid repossession, would you find it acceptable if the landlord put your rent up without notice because he had a financial crisis and expected you to foot the bill?. It really pisses me off to hear people whinging about it, but worst of all knocking the landlords and agents for trying to make a living. And yes agents charge admin because the landlord can not foot the bill for every failed applicant and we agents that are good have to do a lot of work to ensure you and the landlord are protected legally and the admin is mega. Why do you think they are asking you to meet these requirements? It's because they have been bitten in the arse and now they are twice as shy. In a nutshell if a tenant fails to pay and damages the property the landlord is screwed, tenants always act naïve and hard done bye yet they always know their rights, the council tell tenants to stop paying so the landlord has to evict through the courts before they will be offered help now isn't that unfair for both parties concerned? Yes it is but I have not heard one case where a tenant has been evicted and then offered the landlord all the money back he is due after they have been offered a house have you?

With regards to the man offended by the probing questions for being a guarantor well yes it will be you are signing a financial and legal document this means you assume all the responsibility of being the tenant & should the lead tenants renegade on their agreement whilst you receive none of the benefits you will be the one pursued and county courted if you fail to pay! This is why people are not willing to act as guarantor so why should a landlord gamble his property on someone he hasn't ever met if a friend, work mate, boss or family member wont be guarantor.

It's the system that is to blame and councils refusing to take responsibility, they allow landlords to absorb all the shit knowing they will eventually be obligated to house the evicted tenant. Remember when towns were filled with dangerous derelict buildings blighting areas with rubbish tips in the gardens if it wasn't for developers and landlords they would still be like it and there would be no private rental sector. The government present and past have sold off council housing so there is none left and making many individuals very wealthy in the process of which a few I know bought the very home they used to smash up because the council repaired it and the rent was peanuts yet as much as they pleaded poverty they were the ones with £100 trainers, SKY TV, they smoked and drank, had new cars & went on holidays, whilst me and my family lived in a big farmhouse yet had to cut our own wood because we couldn't afford central heating and drove round in shit heaps because just paying the mortgage and living swallowed our money so you see it's relative, horses for courses.
If you want to change it lobby your MP for more social housing, councils to be forced to rent properties from private landlords at the going rate with guaranteed rents, and more legal & financial protection for landlords against the bad apple tenants.

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Kayy 14th February, 2016 @ 10:09

Dear Mr Angry Agent:

I previously commented. My only real complaint was that this article insinuated there must be something wrong with/untrustworthy about a prospective tenant that no one trusted them enough to be a guarantor. Which honestly is the rudest thing ever, and quit presumptive. In this day and age parents simply aren't willing to. My parents were co-signers on my sister's college loan and as such they were royally screwed over when she failed to pay. Because of that my parents now refuse to co-sign [My cheap ass car has a high monthly payment for this reason, since I have NO credit history] and wouldn't be a guarantor on renting for me. It had nothing to do with MY untrustworthiness and simply of something that happened in the past. And the rest of my family is either in a completely different state or not even financially stable enough to take that gamble, despite that I have NEVER been late on ANY payment I have EVER had.

Luckily my credit is now going up with this car payment.

So please, don't be so rude about why someone can't get a guarantor. I can understand WHY someone with bad/no credit would need it. But if you want us to be nice and understand about the why, maybe you need to start doing the same.

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black rat 28th February, 2016 @ 20:55

Struggling to rent a house as they ask for a guarantor I cannot provide. I offered 6 months rent - dd not help. We live in a social house, my husband is on DLA and high WTC and working as his disability does not restrict him from any job. We also get CTC on our kids. The reason we want to rent a house and give up our HA house is we want to move to another area.
So: income approx 3k net, but not much employment income, approx 900, as he works part time now, willing to work full time.
Tried everywhere, no success. Just want to move from Scotland to England.
Tried homeswapper but not interest in our location as rural.
Looks like we got stuck.

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scott 9th March, 2016 @ 10:33

I don't care what anybody states its an outright rip off from landlords and agencies. I worked with both. Property maintenance etc. Yeah you will always get your bad tenants but you cant tar everyone with the same brush. You now have 1 month in advance deposit that no longer follows the rule of thumb ie if 1 months rent equals 700 then the deposit is 700. Then the agency fees on top then credit check fees! Now they want you to provide a guarantor or sign up to an insurance policy that covers you adding 100-200 a year. Now I have been private letting for 12 years every property was left in better standard than I got it all landlords were over the moon (apparently when they came to see property at end of tenancy) and still I always need to fight to get deposits back etc. Usually takes anything up to 8 months to get it back while every time I move I need to stomp up 1500-2000 to get into a house/flat. I can tell you both as a tenant and property maintenance man for both landlords and agencies there standards are crap. They never re decorate or change flooring or keep anything up to date when they should. Everything is always half ass scrimp and scrape. ( It will just have to do attitude.) Prices for letting are still increasing fees are still increasing while we as tenants are being asked to provide more and more proof. I will not use a guarantor to gain access to a property due to the fact I'm an adult I live and breathe to take care of myself and wife and kids. I moved out from my parents at 16 and didn't look back why should I need to now. Need to go and ask family and friends if they can take responsibility for my actions?? That wouldn't pass in a court of law for any criminal offence why is it justifiable now. Plus it puts the hole reference and deposit procedure on its knees.

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