As the pandemic continues to negatively affect the economy, more of us are looking at ways to make extra income wherever possible and safeguard our livelihoods. If you’ve got an extra room in your home, you could do just that by taking on a lodger.
With the government’s Rent a Room Scheme, you could earn up to £7,500 per year tax-free from a lodger. You can do this as a homeowner or even if you don’t own the home you’re in, you can ask your landlord if you can do this.
- If you have a mortgage on your property, you will need to check with your lender to make sure you’re allowed to rent out a room under the terms of the mortgage contract.
- You will have to perform a ‘right to rent‘ check to see if the lodger is legally allowed to live in the UK.
- You’ll also need to get an annual gas safety check and furniture and furnishings must meet safety standards.
- This scheme is only if you live in the home and it’s your main residence. If you’re a residential landlord, then you can opt into this scheme at any time.
Tips for Taking on a Lodger
If this sounds good to you, then here are some tips to consider before going ahead.
- Pick the right platform to list your property. Here on ministryofrooms.com we specialise in advertising rooms for rent and it’s a great place to find a potential lodger too . You can list as many rooms as you like for free.
- Make sure you draw up a Lodger Agreement. You can find templates of them online and they will help make sure both you and your lodger are in agreement of how things should be in the home.
- Take a deposit from your lodger to cover anything that may pop up like damages or unpaid rent. Details of this should be included in your agreement.
- Have an idea of the type of lodger you’d like. This person will be sharing your space after all so it’s important you have things in common! Would you like a student? Young professional? Someone who is good with pets? Think about this before choosing the first person who approaches you about your room.
- Be open to compromise! The lodger has to understand they are coming into your space and they’ll likely not want to disturb the status quo but they will be paying for the space too, for a time, it will be their home. So be open to compromise so that your lodger feels more at home.
- You can do real time viewings using the free video call feature here on ministryofrooms.com or if you’re happy to share your details, you can do this via facetime or whatsapp. Virtual viewings are a great way to keep you safe during these times but can also save a lot of time and speed up the process.