How to talk to your parent or guardian about co-signing.

Talking to your parent(s) or guardian(s) about being a co-signer is important and kind of a big deal! After all, there can be legal and financial ramifications if the tenants on the lease do not pay rent of excessively damage the rental unit. We recommend discussing the following with your potential co-signer:

  • What is your source of income?
  • What is the monthly budget you are both comfortable with and how does it compare to the income being used to pay for rent?
  • How will rent be paid?
  • If the tenant is unable to pay for rent, how will you communicate and go about ensuring rent is paid on time?
  • How will you afford your security deposit? This is usually the cost of 1-2 months rent due at the time of signing your lease.
  • Does your co-signer want to be notified each time you pay the rent?
  • How will you manage your personal relationship between the tenant and co-signer and how might a financial agreement impact this relationship?
  • If you have roommates, are you each having your own co-signer that will be responsible for your portion of the rent (get this in writing with the landlord) or is one co-signer responsible for the entire lease?
  • Are there any stipulations necessary for the cosigner to feel comfortable with the agreement? Offer to introduce your co-signer to your future roommate(s), have all of you complete the Preferred tenant Program, fill out a roommate agreement, and get your lease reviewed by the University Legal Clinic for free prior to having anyone sign it.