Your guarantor does not have to be a family member. If your guarantor does not meet the income requirement, it is possible to combine two guarantors to meet the income requirement. You may not know anybody in the UK who would be willing to act as your guarantor. There are services in the UK that can offer guarantors. SU Homes recommends Housing Hand. However, this service does charge: housinghand.co.uk.
The University of Essex is developing its own guarantor service, YourGuarantor. If you do not wish to use Housing Hand or YourGuarantor and do not have a guarantor in the UK, you will be asked to pay 6 month’s rent upfront covering the first month of your tenancy and the final 5 months.