If you want help paying off your mortgage, making monthly rent, or would simply enjoy some extra spending money, renovating a spare room or guesthouse to rent can be a great way to increase your funds. As the economy improves, the demand for quality housing increases, so it is important to make your space marketable to potential tenants. Here are a few ways to start you on the path towards renting out part of your home.
Create a Livable Space
While you might be accustomed to living in a house with open space and many rooms, you must remember the place your tenant is living will be much smaller. This is why it is important to make the most out of the area you are providing. Research ideas about how to utilize small spaces, look for organizational tools such as shelving units and storage options in order to optimize the attraction of your room.
Include Free Utilities
Providing free water, gas, electricity and trash can be a great way to attract potential renters. While these services may be advertised as free in the listing, don’t hesitate to include your tenant’s usage in their flat monthly payment. While providing free services may hike up the cost of rent, it will attract people who don’t want to deal with the burden of multiple bills each month.
Provide Essential Services
Appeal to potential tenants by including free Internet, television, and even phone services in the room or guesthouse you provide. While it is likely you already pay for these utilities, this could be a good opportunity to upgrade to something like FiOS, which will support high traffic without compromising quality, and is more resistant than your average provider. FiOS services also offer bundle packages that allow you to consolidate your TV, Internet, and Phone at a low cost.
While it may be enticing to accept the first renter that comes along, it is important to interview potential candidates. Since this person will not only be renting your space but also living within close quarters to you, it is crucial to find someone who mixes with your lifestyle. Take some time to consider the type of life you lead and generate questions that comply. Figuring out what type of behavior you can tolerate will allow you to have a healthy and functional relationship with your renter.
Keep the Security Deposit
Even when you think you’ve found the perfect candidate to rent your room or guesthouse, it is important to hope for the best but expect the worst. This is why it is crucial you put the initial security deposit into savings incase you need it in the future. While the hope is the security deposit will be returned at the end of your renters stay, it might also come in handy if a rent check bounces or unforeseen damage to your property occurs. Remember that while you are providing services for this person, you are also responsible for your own livelihood and the wellbeing of your home.