How to add a cosigner

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I'll try to keep this story short: I'm currently processing an applicant who is separating from her husband.  They are still friendly with each other, and the husband seems to want to help as much as possible.  As the wife does not have enough income to qualify for the unit, the husband has agreed to cosign.  How does this work?  Is it an extra paragraph in the lease and I have his signature on the lease?  Is it an entirely separate form?  Any advice or examples would be greatly appreciated!

Normally you would use a co-signer when the person qualifies but for some reason to make you nervous, like new in town, no rental history, etc.  If she doesn't qualify, how willing is he to pay for how long?

Verify that he is a home owner or has some kind of credit to protect.

We have used a co-signer 4 times: parent of couple with no rental history, still in place.  Friend of illegals, always paid and eventually moved out.  Dad of gal we were giving a second change.  She ended up strung out on drugs, he ended up paying 2 months rent and helping us get her out.  Grandmother of couple we were giving a second chance.  Grandma was terminal when she signed the co-sign agreement, died a month later, tenants spiraled downhill and we paid them to leave.

It is a separate agreement, looks something like this:

Cosigner Agreement

This Cosigner Agreement (Agreement) is entered into on xxx, 2012, between xxxx (Tenant), Bruce and Michele Fischer (Landlord), and xxxx (Cosigner).

This Agreement is part of the rental agreement between Tenant and owner for the rental premises located at address, Longview, WA 98632 (Premises). A copy of the rental agreement is provided to the Cosigner.

The Cosigner agrees to be jointly and severally liable (if Tenants do not pay in a timely manner) for any of the Tenants financial obligations of the rental agreement. Those obligations include but are not limited to: unpaid rent, property damage, and cleaning and repair costs. Prompt payment by the Cosigner may help avoid additional costs or additional damage to the Tenants rental history. Landlord may demand that Cosigner perform as promised under this Agreement without first using Tenant’s security deposit.

Co-signer info:

Address: ________________________________ Phone: ______________________

E-mail: ____________________________________________

SSN: __________________________________ Date of birth: _____________________

Though the Landlord has no legal obligation to report to the Cosigner any nonpayment of financial obligation by the Tenants, both Tenants and the Cosigner understand that the Landlord reserves the right to send notices to the Cosigner of the Tenants failure to meet any financial obligations of the rental agreement. Cosigner appoints Tenant as his or her agent for service of process in the event of any lawsuit arising out of this Agreement.

Landlord: ____________________________ Date: ____________________

Tenant: ____________________________ Date: ____________________

Tenant: ____________________________ Date: ____________________

Cosigner: ____________________________ Date: ____________________

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