Why can’t I be added to my wife’s lease?

UPDATED: Mar 20, 2012

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Why can’t I be added to my wife’s lease?

I recently got married and I am trying to get into my wife’s lease agreement. I sent my application and it was denied due to my credit and past rental history. My wife has been living in the apartment complex for more than a year and has always paid the rent on time. However, the managing company says that I can’t be added to the lease unless I am approved individually. Can they do that? Isn’t this as simple as adding my name to her current lease?

Asked on March 20, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Texas


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

It's as simple as adding your name to her lease--if the landlord (or its managing company) wants to do this. A lease is a contract; once it is executed between two parties, both parties have to consent or agree to any change, including adding a new party. Being married to someone does not give you an automatic right to be added to her contracts or leases; therefore the landlord or its agent must agree to add you to any leases. In this case, it appears that you do not meet their criteria for this.

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