Rent out a room in your home
As much as I hate saying the ‘R’ word – that is exactly where Ireland is now – in Recession. Here at Getdigs.ie we notice more and more households are considering renting out a room in their own home to make ends meet. We recently conducted a survey which indicated that 18% of all Homeowners would consider renting out a room in their own home, depending on various circumstances. All of these Homeowners said the Monday to Friday rental option would be one they would choose. Strangely; 38% of Homeowners surveyed did not even know of the Governments Rent-a-Room scheme!
The main reason homeowners told Getdigs.ie that they would be interested in renting out a room was to assist in the paying of monthly mortgage payments, general utility bills (we all know these continue to increase in a blink of the eye) and grocery shopping. In most cases it was viewed as an interim solution until the economy improved.
Historically our Monday to Friday Accommodation focus really suits Homeowners as the Lodgers interested in this rental option are either quite, studious students or long commuting professionals.
If you are going down the route of the Rent-a-Room scheme it is worth considering these few tips.
What is involved?
- The big carrot is that you can earn up to €14,000 Tax Free. Yes, Tax Free! When compared to the U.K. where it is £7,500 this really is a fantastic incentive.
- Another positive is that you are not subject to landlord/tenant legislation, you do not have to register with the Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB) and you do not have to provide a rental book.
- You will now be sharing your home with another person. Ensure you do your homework. Getdigs.ie has embedded software that allows the Homeowner to ‘interview’ the lodger online via our SMS messaging system without the Lodger seeing any personal details about the homeowner (e.g. name, phone number, email, even the exact address is not disclosed) this allows the homeowner to get a feel for what the lodger is like. When you choose a Lodger put ground rules in place i.e. a contract. For more ideas on this look at our ‘Tips’ page.
Prepare your Home
- In recessionary times Lodgers tend to be choosier as there are more rooms available on the market. It’s important to ensure your home looks well for potential Lodgers – ensure the pictures you upload to market your home in the best possible way. Photograps should be good quality and the rooms should be neat and tidy. First impressions are important. A potential Lodger wants to see a clean well-kept home. If this means painting some rooms or investing in new furniture you should consider it.
- You should also clearly define the boundaries, Getdigs.ie have a facility in the Homeowner advert form that allows the homeowner to tick what areas of the house the Lodger will have access to e.g. lounge, kitchen, garden etc. It also allows the homeowner to specify Smoking/Non-smoking, Male/Female etc.
What type of Lodger are you looking for?
- Getdigs.ie generally focuses on the weekday rental market. This ultimately breaks into two types of Lodgers; the student and the professional
- The Student – they generally look for accommodation from Sunday evening to Thursday evening. Their bedroom should be equipped with a good study desk, a table lamp and maybe some bookshelves. Some students may be looking for breakfast and an evening meal – you should incorporate this into your pricing. Others are happy to eat in the college.
- Professionals / Contract workers – this category of Lodger may only require the room from Tuesday evening to Thursday evening. They also generally eat out so cooking is not an issue.
Meals or no meals?
This is probable one of the most frequent questions we get asked. Around 80% of our Lodger do not want a main meal, the reason being is that now days the canteens in colleges and workplaces are of a very high standard and are often subsidised. So alot of lodger will only require a small breakfast and a light bite to eat in the evening – which they can get themselves if they have access to the kitchen.
If you have any queries about the above information please comment or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org