What is a Guarantor?
Written by True Tamplin, BSc, CEPF®
Updated on July 21, 2021
A guarantor is an individual who promises to pay the debts of another party if they default on their loan.
Being a guarantor is a different role than being a co-signer because guarantors have no claim to any assets purchased by the borrower.
Purpose of a Guarantor
The purpose of a guarantor is to allow first-time renters or borrowers with poor or limited credit history an opportunity to access loans or other financial agreements.
The guarantor will usually:
- be over the age of 18
- reside in the country in which the transaction is taking place
- and have an exemplary credit history.
They must also have sufficient income to cover the debt they are guaranteeing.
Guarantors may be limited or unlimited depending on payment schedules and the level of financial involvement they have.
A limited guarantor may be asked only to guarantee a loan up to a certain amount or for a certain period of time, after which the borrower assumes the full responsibility of payment.
Whereas, an unlimited guarantor is held liable for all payments at all stages during the loan.
Guarantors may also be required for a financial agreement even if the borrower has a good credit history.
For example, many landlords require a guarantor for first-time renters, such as college students, regardless of their income or credit quality.