Is it better to sign a rental contract with a tenant directly or with the tenant's company that will be paying his rent anyway?

Asked by Keith, Outside U.S. Mon May 13, 2013

I am planning to rent out my condo & one of my potential tenants has asked if I am willing to sign the rental contract with his company instead of with him directly. His company will be the one paying for everything, including the security deposit as well as the monthly rent.

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Mitchell Lub…, Mortgage Broker Or Lender, SHERMAN OAKS, CA
Mon May 13, 2013
You have to sign with both
1 vote
Elena Talis, Broker, Palo Alto, CA
Mon May 13, 2013
The rental agreement covers not only payments but also responsibilities of the occupant and the landlord. I would think that you would need both signatures, the occupant and their company representative, on the contract. But I would consult a lawyer...
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Jim, Home Buyer, Klamath County, OR
Thu Mar 2, 2017
BOTH... The tenants name on the lease as the occupant and the company as the guarantor. Now you have locked in all responsible parties. If you have doubts about how to accomplish the inclusion of a guarantor, SEE AN ATTORNEY 'EXPERIENCED' IN SUCH MATTERS.
0 votes
When properly drafted, the guarantor is GUARANTEEING that the tenant will perform to the terms of the lease/rental agreement.
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Juliana Lee, Agent, Palo Alto, CA
Fri May 17, 2013
I believe having the company sign the rental contract could cause problems for you. If the company signs the rental contract they are the ones obligated to fulfill the obligations and not the actual tenant. By knowingly doing this you might be giving implicit consent for subleases with no control over the sublease. If your property is damaged, you would have to seek compensation from the company. The person living in the house would have an additional layer to shield him from being held responsible for his actions.

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Rob C. - $75M…, Agent, Santa Clara, CA
Mon May 13, 2013
Consult with an eviction service company. You can reverse engineer proper steps to take to protect yourself from a sticky situation.
0 votes
Steven Ornel…, Agent, Fremont, CA
Mon May 13, 2013
Hi Kc,

In this case I believe "more is more"; meaning, I would designate one of the "entities" as primary with the 2nd being an "on-the-hook-as-well" co-signer. I completely agree you should seek legal advice on how to best protect yourself.

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Terri Vellios, Agent, Campbell, CA
Mon May 13, 2013
That could be a legal question.

The one responsible should sign. Some companies LLC and limited their liability. The person signing on behalf of the company would need to have legal authority to sign the lease. If they fail to make the payments how is the company set up for responsible party to the lease? If you have to evict the tenant who has claim to the property?

I recommend you talk with your property manager or a real estate attorney. Here is one recommendation: David Hammerslough 408-261-4252
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