Do you have an extra room in your house that you don’t use? Do you need the extra money? We’re in the 21st century and renting a room in your home isn’t such a big issue these days. Sometimes it’s better to rent out one single room in your house instead of the entire property. It usually offers more flexibility for your own private use of the other rooms.
This can be the perfect opportunity to get some extra money. Many homeowners find themselves with an extra room or two that’s just standing empty. So why not take this opportunity to rent it out? The extra income can make a big difference in your pocket as homeowner. The income boost can basically make homeownership more affordable.
Here are a few tips to help you get started renting out a room in your house.
Prepare your home
You shouldn’t just prepare the room you’re renting out, but the home as a whole. Although your tenant is renting the room only, they’ll have access to other parts of your home too. So it’s best to prepare your home as thoroughly as possible. You should go through your home to ensure everything is in order. Do that before you consider showing the room to potential renters. Fix anything that needs attention in your home. Will the tenant bring their own furniture? If not, then it’s best to buy new bedroom furniture. Decide on the room you’re going to rent and pay extra attention to it. Does the room have its own bathroom? You can get more money if it has an en suite bathroom. A basement setup with its own kitchen and bathroom will even be a better idea to rent out. It provides more privacy and renters will pay more. So it’s a win-win situation.
What will you charge for the room?
What you’ll charge for the room is probably one of the most important things you should think of. Look online to see how much other people are charging for single rooms. It should give you an idea of how much you could ask for. When coming up with a price, you should consider the size of the room and the region or city you live in. Remember that any amount you receive is taxable income. But you’ll now have deductions and can claim expenses. For instance, new curtains or carpet in the renter’s bedroom is a deductible expense but if you get new ones for the entire house then it’s not.
Be specific about the type of person you want
When it comes to this, you should be as honest as possible with yourself. If you don’t want a student in your house, say so in your ad. Or perhaps you don’t smoke and don’t want someone who does, you should state so. You should be clear about the type of person you’re looking for. And if the room is only available for six months, you should indicate that too. If you don’t mention these things in your advert, you’ll be tempted to accept any kind of person. So it’s best to set clear boundaries for yourself. It’s important that you list everything in your advert. For instance, if you live near a restaurant or have a swimming pool in your backyard, list that too. That will attract more people. Also, don’t forget to take photos of the room and anything else that might be of interest to the renter.
Use your instinct but don’t discriminate
You should think about what you want to ask your potential renter in the interview. If it’s your first time being a landlord, you can look online for possible questions to ask a potential tenant. It’s important that you evaluate each candidate fairly. You should find out what each applicant’s situation is, exactly why they want to rent a room. Also make sure to ask for references. That way you can make contact with their previous landlords. But above all, you should provide an equal housing opportunity and don’t discriminate against anyone.
Use a written rental agreement
It’s much easier to just have an oral arrangement but a written lease is the way to go. That way you’ll have everything on paper. Sometimes people don’t remember a verbal agreement the same way, so a written one might be a better option. Then, it’s important to establish the house rules right in the beginning. Everything that’s discussed should be included in your written agreement. Whether it’s laundry hours or even quiet hours, include everything. And when you’re creating a written lease, you should include the rent amount and the date the money is due. Also add whether the tenant will pay utilities and if so, which ones.
If you stay alone, then having someone rent a room in your house might be a good thing. You’ll have someone to chat with and you won’t feel alone. On top of that, you’ll have an extra income.