Looking for the advantages/disadvantages for us as a couple.

We have been common-law for 9 years and are moving into a new place. My spouse recently lost her job so I will potentially taking most of the financial responsibility for this lease depending on how things go. I am not concerned, personally, with being able to afford the lease on my own (I currently have well over enough saved to cover a year of rent). The last place we stayed at we both signed and we generally keep our finances separate. We live in Ontario, Canada and both have very good credit ratings. Our future landlords are not encouraging one way over the other.

What should I consider when deciding whether to have my spouse sign the lease with me?

  • 4
    I am a real estate agent. When I rent an apartment, I don't care about relationships, in fact, I can't ask. Every adult over 18 must be on the lease. Even the 19 yr old college student, if he will live there. Nov 5, 2014 at 13:55
  • @JoeTaxpayer that makes sense. I would have assumed we should both be on it if the landlord hadn't mentioned the option of not doing it that way...
    – Damon
    Nov 5, 2014 at 16:09
  • @JoeTaxpayer: Really? So if I rent, and my girlfriend moves in with me the next week, or my brother decides to stay at my place for the summer, you would think we need to redo the rental agreement? You might prefer that, certainly, but I don't think it's common practice.
    – keshlam
    Nov 6, 2014 at 0:39
  • 1
    In practice, a relative staying a few weeks wouldn't be an issue. If a boyfriend/girlfriend moves in, they should be added to the lease. Else, what if the lease-signer moves out? There's no agreement to protect either party. Nov 6, 2014 at 2:17
  • don't know about Canada, but my wife is only listed as an "occupant" on our lease - not a "resident"
    – warren
    Nov 12, 2014 at 20:14


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