Student Guarantor Agreement

Kate Mellor
Kate Mellor
12 Thanks
19 Posts
1 year ago

My son has signed a tenancy agreement with a student landlord and I have been asked to guarantee his rent.

Initially I wasn't happy with the arrangement because it is 4 sharers on a single AST, with joint and several liability and an annual rent of around £16,000.

I have now viewed the guarantee form and I feel that the risk of my being held to cover the whole of rent and damages is almost non-existent, due to the inadequacy of the documentation, but I wanted to run it past someone else with experience.

The agreement was signed in advance by all 4 students and the signatures witnessed by a member of the landlord's staff with a single signature (dubious method of witnessing individual signatures);

I wasn't contacted prior to the students signing, or given a copy of the AST at any point, all contact has been to the student tenant, nothing addressed to the guarantors.

My son has received a letter asking for post-dated cheques or a DD mandate to cover one quarter of the full rent in installments (his share) and a Parental Guarantor Form to ask us to sign and for him to return.

The guarantor form simply says that "If your son or daughter falls into arrears with their rent, you will be required to cover their debt". I emailed the landlord/agent and asked them to tell me how much rent in total I was guaranteeing and they responded with an amount equal to his share and not the full house rent. There is no mention anywhere about guaranteeing damage repairs, although it states in the AST that the tenants would be liable.

The guarantor form is NOT a DEED, despite the AST having been signed in advance.

I would like to be reasonably certain that as long as my own son's rent is paid in full, I am not exposed to undue danger of being stuck with other people's debts. It's not uncommon for students to drop out, or fall out during an academic year I would imagine. I'm prepared to risk having to defend my position in court if necessary, but I want some assurance that I would have a reasonable chance of success based on the inadequacy of their practices and documentation.

I understand that you cannot give me full legal advice in the way a solicitor can, but what I'm really asking is can you see any danger here that I've perhaps missed and should take into consideration? I understand that any decision I make must be my own and you won't be responsible for any outcome.

Kathleen Pearson

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