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Lease guarantor companies reviewed | co-signer products
What is a guarantor on a lease service?
Has your rent application been rejected? Are you trying to land an apartment in a competitive market such as New York City? Did you just move to the US from another country? Or, perhaps you are looking to move to a better neighborhood? Consider comparing a third party lease guaLease guarantor products help people qualify for a rental lease in situations where they may be asked to obtain a co-signer.
If you are having a difficult time qualifying for a lease, a lease guarantor or co-signer service may be able to help you. These services help those having a hard time qualifying for a lease due to issues such as marginal credit or short work history. These services act as co-signers and “guarantee” that the landlord will be paid rent, deposits, and damage fees if you miss payments or default.
What is a guarantor on a lease?
A guarantor on a lease is simply someone who guarantees your lease obligations. This could be a family member, a friend, or a service. A guarantor lease service is like a friendly rich uncle who helps you lease a rental that you cannot qualify for on your own. Guarantor services may act as your co-signer, help with your deposit or pay your rent if you cannot. Of course, they do not offer these services for free. There are fees and obligations involved, but if you want to live in a high-demand, high cost of living area, it may be the only way you can secure a lease agreement.
A landlord may ask you to obtain a co-signer or guarantor or you may simply need one due to your financial circumstances. Common reasons for needing a lease guarantor include,
- Not meeting the income requirement
- New job or short employment history
- No credit or marginal credit
- Moving from another country
- No rental history
- Self-employment or inconsistent income
- Past includes an eviction or bankruptcy
- Full-time student status
- Landlord requires it
What to look for in a third party lease guarantor or co-signer service
When we compared these services we looked at pricing, how services are offered, what services are offered, location, and more. If you are looking for a co-signer company, look for services offered in your area or specific to the building you are trying to rent.
Pros and Cons of a lease guarantee product
We looked at seven popular products. They are not ranked but listed alphabetically.
How much does a co-signer service cost?
Generally, most services charge roughly a month’s worth of rent for co-signer services. For example, if your rent is $2,000 you’ll likely have to pay about $1,400-$2,000 for these services.
Why do landlords require a co-signer?
A landlord or property manager may require a co-signer to approve your lease application if they consider you a risk. Risk may be due to your financial situation, rent history, or other unique circumstance. If you don’t pay rent or violate your lease agreement they can pursue the co-signer for payment.
If you are not sure how much rent you can afford, see our rent calculator.
How hard is it to get a lease guarantee contract approved?
While your credit and income will be verified, they may be able to offer approval to those with a lower income than what the rental company requires. For example, many property management companies may require the applicant to make as much as 40X or more of the annual rent. So if your rent would be $2000 per month, you’d need to make a minimum of $80,000 to qualify. Some rent guarantee services will co-sign for you if you make less. For example, Insurent requires 27.5X times the rent or $55,000 using our example. If you cannot qualify for the lease on your own, it is worth seeing if a lease guarantee company can help you.
Can a lease guarantee service help me save money?
These services may help you decrease the upfront costs you may have been required to pay on your own. For example, if you have marginal credit or a new job, the rental company may require you to pay first and last month’s rent, rather than just your first month’s rent.
“For many people, lease guarantees make renting possible. In lots of markets, renters simply can’t access safe, affordable housing without this type of support. They also add convenience for some renters, where the perfect home is closer to work or schools. Lease guarantees also save money because some property management companies charge an increased deposit for those with marginal credit, which a co-signer product will not require.” — Tyrone Poole, Founder, OneApp
How does a lease guarantor work?
Lease guarantors work by ensuring to your landlord that you’ll meet your lease obligations. Like a co-signer, they are taking a risk for you. In many cases, their requirements may be more lenient than the property management company’s requirements.
1. How to obtain co-signer services
In many large cities, the landlord will offer these services to you. Some services such as Jetty primarily work with the property manager to offer these services to their lease applicants. Some companies also offer guarantor services directly to the renter, but the renter may have to persuade the landlord to agree to accept the services. If this is the case, the guarantor will provide the information you’ll need to provide to your potential landlord.
2. What co-signer services cover
These companies act as co-signers. If you cannot pay rent or default on your lease the co-signer will be responsible for paying your rent. Many services will even payout the remainder of your lease obligation if needed. However, if this happens you will have to pay them back plus possible court fees as well.
3. How co-signer services cover
If they act as co-signers they will make your rent payments should you miss them and will cover the cost of damages when you move out. Some do not cover late rent payments at all. Of course, rent is never free. If the service makes any type of payment for you, you have to pay them back. And just like a landlord, they will take you to court to collect fees if needed.
How do I apply for lease guarantor services?
In some cases, your future landlord will provide the service with your application details. In other cases, you will need to provide typical information such as ID, proof of income, and employment information. You can apply online and expect a response usually within 24 hours.
Is using a third-party lease guarantor product worth it?
In most cases, it is worth it provided that you can make all of your payments including rent. The average upfront cost of one month’s worth of rent is often worth it to obtain a lease in a competitive market. If you feel that your financial future may be unstable, you may want to consider a more affordable market or simply stay where you are at.
Want to get credit for paying your rent on time? See, Adding rent payments to your credit report.
Rent lease guarantees FAQs
Are co-signers and guarantors the same?
They can be. Both are responsible for covering your expenses if you default on your lease agreement. However, guarantor services may also offer additional assistance such as security deposit help and renters insurance.
How do I find a guarantor or co-signer for my apartment lease?
Lease guarantee services may be offered by your property manager or you may need to obtain it on your own. To find one on your own, contact those that we reviewed or look for a service that offers lease protection in your area.
Do I have to have good credit to use a lease guarantee service?
In most cases, you do need decent credit and proof of income to obtain a lease guarantee agreement. However, often the income requirements are lower than what landlords require and they may accept proof of liquid assets as proof of ability to pay.
What happens if I break the lease?
You are still responsible for every agreement you make in the lease including rent payments, late fees, cost of damage to the unit, legal fees, and more. Legal fees may also be incurred by the lease guarantor, so don’t sign any agreement that you feel you will not be able to keep. It can become quite expensive.
Do lease guarantee agreements affect my credit?
As part of your rental application, the service will run a credit check and, if you do not make your payments or default, your credit will be negatively impacted.
How much rent is covered?
While you may be able to obtain rent protection for two years, the service is not going to pay two years of your rent. You are still obligated to pay your rent every month. If the service has to pay your rent, you have to pay them back. How quickly you are required to pay them back should be stated in your contract.
What if I cannot find a co-signer?
When asked for a co-signer, most will ask a financially capable family member first. But not everyone has that option or a willing family member or friend. If you do not know someone who can co-sign for you, you can contact a lease guarantee or co-signing service to see if you qualify for their assistance.
Does my roommate need to have their own lease guarantor or co-signer contract?
No, one contract can cover everyone. However, you can split the fees. And, you should have a roommate agreement in place should one of the roommates not fulfill their obligations. But if the roommates could not qualify for the entire rent on their own, everyone may need to obtain a co-signer.
Lease guarantor services can be helpful to those trying to get a lease in a competitive market or to those who marginally cannot qualify on their own for their preferred community. If a property manager or landlord offers you the option to use one of these services, it may be in everyone’s best interest if you take advantage of what the service has to offer. These services may save you money in the long run and give your landlord the confidence to rent to you.
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