The University of Essex has become the first university to join the YourGuarantor scheme, a new service which is designed to allow UK universities to act as rent guarantors for their international students.
The service aims to offer protection, in the guise of an insurance policy, to the university in the event a student defaults on their rent. YourGuarantor says that each guarantee that is provided by the university is “added to the insurance policy to ensure that the university is fully protected”. The premium for the insurance policy is covered by the fee paid by the students who sign up.
In usual circumstances international students in rented accommodation will be required to provide a guarantor who is a UK resident. If they can’t do this, they are required to pay the rent in advance or may be declined a lease agreement.
Christopher Oldham, Director of Campus Service at the University of Essex, saw the benefits of a scheme that better helped to protect international students. “At the University of Essex we are committed to providing the best possible experience for our international students,” he said. “We recognise the difficult situation that may arise if they are asked to pay their full rent in advance, which is why we are delighted to be able to help our students with the YourGuarantor service.”
Darren Baker, Strategic Planning Manager at the University of Essex Campus Services, added: “Our Partnership with YourGuarantor provides us with the surety we need to be able to act as UK rent guarantor for our international students. This issue has been long standing and I'm sure our international students will benefit greatly from this new service.”
According to Mike Jones, Managing Director of YourGuarantor, the main aim of YourGuarantor is to help universities improve student experience, attract more international students and enhance their reputation internationally. “We are delighted to welcome the University of Essex to the scheme and we are currently working hard with a number of other universities in the process of joining,” he said.
The website can be found here.