So you're going to rent out a room?

Thinking of renting out that room in your house upstairs? The one which has been lying empty for ages now? Maybe that room isn’t actually empty but it’s stuffed full of odds and sods and other rubbish that you know you really should throw out or at least take down to the local charity shop. Well, from our decade of experience here at we’d advise you to get up and start making that room work for you right now.

Renting out a room can be extremely profitable, especially in this day and age where there are no shortage of people needing to rent in a shared house because they can’t afford to rent an entire apartment never mind the fact that saving up the deposit for a mortgage is impossible.

Before you rush in to flat sharing though there’s a few things you really should think about. For instance, if you’re renting out a room in your own home then you really do have to think about how much you value your privacy. Are you the sociable type or the kind of person who likes to come in at night, close the door, unhook the phone and read a book in uninterrupted bliss? If so, perhaps it’s a good idea to just rent the room with access only to the kitchen and bathroom.

If, on the other hand, you enjoy company then, provided you vet your new flat mate thoroughly, you’ll probably enjoy flat sharing.
You should make certain rules clear though such as:
• The rent is a fixed amount every month
• Tenants have access to the kitchen, bathroom and livingroom (if applicable)
• All food is separate
• Tenants are expected to join in with household chores

Other things you might want to think about include how much your heating and lighting bills will increase and factor this into the rental cost equation. It might also be an idea to draw up a rota for the bathroom – especially if you’re both trying to leave the house around 8am.
Is there room for your tenant to park their car? If not, where will they put it? Does their room have wi fi and a cable TV? Most tenants – especially if they’re under the age of 40 will expect these nowadays.

 See – it’s not just as simple as clearing out the spare room and giving it a once-over with the duster. But then, nothing that’s worthwhile ever is…