Many private landlords and letting agents request that a third party acts as a guarantor for the rent before they will agree to let a property to a student. This will usually be a parent or a guardian.
Landlords will usually require a UK based guarantor, which can often be a problem for overseas students. UK Citizens may also experience difficulties if they do not have a family support network or their parents earn under the arbitrary threshold set by the agent to act as a guarantor.
If you do not have anyone who can act as your guarantor in the UK, landlords and letting agents may ask you to pay more rent upfront (generally 6-12 months).
What are your options?
Private Guarantor Company
It can be possible to negotiate with your landlord or letting agent regarding the amount of rent to pay upfront. If you have enough income or funding to cover your rent every month and can provide evidence of this, your landlord may be willing to accept a lower amount of rent in advance.
Another option is to negotiate paying a higher deposit instead as unlike rent in advance, this money is protected by the deposit scheme.
If you go ahead with either of these options, always ensure that your agreement is confirmed in writing.
If you are unable to come to an agreement with the landlord or letting agent, you can continue looking and take accommodation from another provider where they do not require a UK guarantor.
Several organisations have been set up to help students without a UK guarantor.You can find qualifying criteria and the terms of service on the guarantor organisation website and check that the agent / landlord will accept this scheme before applying.
Housing Hand is one organisation we are aware of that offer a guarantor service to sudents but please note that we do not endorse these companies. If you would like to talk to us about your options please email us at email@example.com or call our adviceline.
All new full-time undergraduate and international postgraduate applicants are guaranteed accommodation in the first year of study if King’s is your firm choice for the next academic year and if you submit your accommodation application by the deadline noted on their webpages.
Further details can be found here.
The University of London rents a limited number of properties from private landlords and rents these to students. King's students can rent their properties that are available to all University of London students.
You require a guarantor to rent through Student Homes but they do not need to be UK based.
A list of available properties can be found here.