Can a 16 year old sign a lease to an apartment?

I’m a 16 year old and I’ve decided that I want to leave my

mom’s place. I have the money to pay for it but I would rather not have her sign onto the lease family issues, blah blah blah. So I want to know if I can rent an apartment without a legal adult?

Asked on March 31, 2016 under Real Estate Law, Virginia


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Actually you can't sign for a lease or any other contract for that matter. That is until you reach the legal "age of majority", that is 18. Until then, as a minor, you lack the legal capacity to sign. Also, as a practical matter, a landlord would most likely not accept your signature without a parent's guarantee.

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

You won't be able to sign the lease at 16 because you are a minor.  At 18, you are considered to be an adult and can then sign the lease which is a contract between landlord and tenant.
In order to sign a contract, you have to be an adult ( age 18).

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.