Do I need a guarantor or co-signer?

In Ontario, landlords are legally allowed to ask for information on your income and credit as well as landlord references.

Where appropriate, a landlord may request a co-signer or guarantor. A guarantor or co-signer is someone who agrees to pay your rent for you in case you are not able to pay. Usually, only close friends or relatives will agree to act as a guarantor for you.

A landlord might ask you for a guarantor or co-signer if they think you may not have enough money to pay the rent, or that you may move out before the lease is over. However, a landlord should not use these requirements in a way that is discriminatory and violates the Ontario Human Rights Code.

If you don’t know anyone who will agree be your guarantor or co-signer, you need to convince the landlord that you are a responsible person and that you have enough money to pay the rent every month. Read What documents do landlords ask for? for acceptable proof that you can show.

You can contact a legal clinic or housing help centre for more information. To find help in your area, go to Services Near Me.

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Last updated: August 13, 2015 4001277