Landlords

Room to Let

 

Having a room to let in your property is a great way to cope with today's tough economic times. Having lodgers or tenants can help you generate extra income and even help with your mortgage expenses. Whether you already own your home or you are also renting it, letting out your room can bring you plenty of advantages.

 

A room to let will have implications when it comes to your taxes and finances. This is why it's important to carefully review these implications before you start advertising that you have a room to let in your property. The government has recently created a scheme that can let you earn a tax-free amount of over 4000 pounds per year when you let a room in your property. However, keep in mind that letting  your property will also lead to expenses, such as insurance, repair and room maintenance. Under the current government scheme, you will not be able to claim these expenses against tax.

 

If you are leasing the property or paying off a mortgage, you should also ensure that you are allowed to take in tenants. Check your home insurance's terms and conditions as well to make sure it covers having a room to let.

 

Once you've finished doing the necessary research and paperwork, it's time to prepare the room to let. Naturally, you will need to clean the room for rent and perform any necessary repairs. As for decorating the space, it's best to stick to neutral choices. Not every tenant will be attracted to purple-coloured walls or curtains with farm animal prints. A more classic and neutrally designed room to let will attract a wider range of potential lodgers. When advertising your room to let, make sure you include plenty of high-quality photos so interested tenants can see all the details of the space.

 

Aside from including pictures, you can also increase your chances of finding a tenant by including more information in your “room to let” advertisement. For instance, describe the location of the property. How close are the nearest public transport facilities? Are there dining, shopping and entertainment areas nearby? Tenants do not only consider the property they are renting but also the location of the place. You should also mention if you provide other amenities, like free Wi-Fi or cable connections. In your ad, you should also indicate the type of ideal tenants that you are looking for, such as students or single professionals.

 

Once you have a potential tenant, it's also advisable that you do a credit and background check on the person. A credit check will assure you that the candidate is in good financial standing and will therefore be able to pay the rent. A background check that lets you communicate with the candidate's former landlords or other references will assure you that the candidate is an ideal tenant.

 

Before welcoming your new tenant to your room to let, make sure you also lay out the rules before either of you sign the papers. If you have any rules about noise, smoking, food or using the communal areas then it's best to establish them early on.