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Student Accommodation Without a Guarantor
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Student Accommodation Without a Guarantor

Written by Sam | April 18, 2020

What is a guarantor? Well this is someone who will pay any money that you can’t afford to, essentially. For instance, you can’t pay your rent or deposit, they will go to your guarantor and demand the money from them and it is legally binding.

Any one who asks for a guarantor will ask for a UK guarantor, this is because they know that they aren’t likely to leave, they can be contacted easily contacted and will abide by the same law and legislation as they live and reside in the same country!

So what happens if you are unable to find a guarantor because no one will vouch for you or you are an international student, what are your options?

UK Student Without a Guarantor

University Schemes

Some universities have a guarantor scheme where they will act as a guarantor for you, they will only usually do this if you don’t owe them anything, you have a satisfactory academic record and you are able to cover your rent. The rent should be covered by your loan anyway which proves your income, you can also get a job in order to enhance that income to increase your chances!

However, not a lot of universities offer this scheme and to check if they do, you need to look at their accommodation page to see. If they don’t you can always email them and ask if they offer or would consider it.

Some universities can offer a bursary or scholarship scheme, this is different to above because they don’t act as a guarantor, they may have a scheme where they can help you pay a higher deposit, pay more months rent early, offering a place to stay in summer should you need it and helping out in many other ways.

Universities are making themselves accessible to everyone, let’s not forget that they currently receive £9k for having you, but they want to make sure that everyone has their chance of getting there and this is a GOOD thing that they are offering this!

Private Schemes

There are some private companies that offer to act as a guarantor for young people in work or students in return for a fee, such as Housing Hand and UK Guarantor. So, it’s the private company that enters into a guarantee contract with the landlord. But they have the right to get their money back from you if they have to make payments to the landlord.

These private schemes typically ask for a co-signer. A co-signer is someone who signs the same agreement as you. As a result, they will be liable to repay any money the company has to pay on your behalf to the landlord.

The difference between being a co-signer and a guarantor isn’t so much to do with the legal responsibilities each takes on – these are very similar. It’s to do with the fact that these private companies don’t usually credit check a co-signer, so they may accept people who would not be able to act as a guarantor.

Places like Housing Hand and UK Guarantor offer these services. Take a look at their website if this is something that might fit your situation!

There is some accommodation where you don’t need a guarantor to live, these can be found and they may be slightly more expensive than the standard house, but worth considering! Mostly these are the big Purpose Built Student Accommodation studios and apartments but letting agents and some landlords will offer this as well! It just takes a lot of searching on websites and asking in letting agents!

International Students

For students who are coming to the university from abroad will have a struggle with this because it is likely they know no one from UK to act as a guarantor. However there are ways you can navigate this.

If you have family in the UK they can act as a guarantor if they pass the tests and if anything goes wrong, you can have a mutual agreement between family! That is one way to navigate having a UK Guarantor.

As above, you can use the Private Guarantor Schemes above, you can then be a co-signature instead and navigate it that way. The ones mentioned above are the most prominent within the UK currently, however there are likely to be more out there!

You can stay in accommodation that doesn’t need a guarantor. Some accommodation doesn’t require a guarantor, they may offer a different signature but you can find these mainly in the studios and apartments of the Purpose Built Student Accommodation sector. Their rent is higher than the average, however, some don’t as for a guarantor and ask that you pay termly, giving them assurance that you are able to stay for at least another term.

Creative Options

Here are some quick ways to maybe hack the system if you like, and find a way around without needing a guarantor. Approach these in an understanding manner and it is completely up to the accommodation provider if they accept these terms.

  • Larger deposit
  • 6 months rent upfront
  • Councils may offer rent deposit schemes – contact them directly
  • Offering to pay for rent guarantee insurance for the term you are living there – You may be reference checked for this
  • Live in with a landlord – this means the landlord stays in the same house and you rent the bedroom from them. The problem with this, if they want to evict you, they can do so without going to court!
  • It doesn’t have to be a family member, it can be a friend!

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