5 tips to make money with a spare room

Making extra money with your spare room

How can I make money with my spare room? Your kids moved out the house or you are a bachelor and have an extra bedroom. This empty space could turn into a money making machine and this article will give you all the information you need to know. Renting out a room in your house is a great way to earn some extra income. It could even cover your monthly grocery bills, utility bills to reduce some monthly stress.

Many people have the dream to purchase a family home, then the kids are in a stage to study – cheers mum and dad! There you are in your proud family home and then what. You still like the garden and the space in the house – no reason to move to an apartment and scale down. Renting out your spare room is a fun thing to do, you help students and you earn some extra income, win-win! And it’s fun to have students from over the entire world! you could also learn a bit from other cultures, even learn some new languages!

1. Taking in language students

It might be that you want to make money from your spare room but can’t, or don’t want to, share with someone full time. This could be your position initially. One daughter was at university but came home during the holidays so needed her room back some of the time. So you need to look at short term options and can’t rent out a room an entire semester.

Have a look at the town where you live – are there any universities around? Especially when you are in i.e. Italy, France, Spain and Latin America many students will go to your country to learn a new language. Students come to learn English and stay anything from a week to a whole year. They are often looking for host families. You provide a room, breakfast and dinner during the week with lunch as well at the weekend. This is usually a packed lunch as they often go off on organised excursions. You could even take all their friends on a nice weekend trip and show your local area. Students love to learn from locals and seeing the hidden gems.

You also could clean the room and do the student’s laundry, all extra packages what you could offer to make more money and the student will definitely be happy with this.

2. Socialising with the student

You are expected to sit together at the table for dinner to give the students the opportunity to practice their English, Spanish, French skills. You will have some hilarious conversations at times and will be only saved by the use of Google Translate! No more boring dinners.

You could have students from all over the world – including Japan, France, Italy, Spain, Angola, Slovakia and Macedonia and will enjoy learning about their lives.

As well as the college you could discover a couple of other organisations locally that bring in school parties from Europe. They also need host families. The students are younger, of course , which feels like more of a responsibility. It generally involves driving them to their learning base for the first few days whilst they find their feet and get to grips with the bus system.

You can expect to be paid between € 150-250 easily per week as a host family.

Pros: you get to know lots of interesting folks from around the world and forge some lasting friendships. Cons: the students tend to be under 20 and can cause some worry. Imagine having one 17 year old who don’t come home until midnight on her first day with you, spent much of the night throwing up and then missed college the next day! They are supposed to be in by 10.30 so this will be a little awkward, but you have to be clear that there will be no reoccurrence. You need to be firm from the start.

The best way to find organizations seeking host families locally is to do an internet search.

2. Welcome your guest

But what about welcoming guests in? We could imagine being nervous about allowing complete strangers have access to your whole house, but would consider doing the odd bed and breakfast weekend. Check the student profile carefully and you could turn down a few people because you don’t trust them. New profiles, unverified, are ones to avoided. As requirements you could put in couples and women. For example, allow pets or children and make a note of a strict no smoking policy. You can set up a deposit limit which is taken in the case of a problem. The interface is really easy to use. The calendar is fully controlled, and also blocked out weekends you don’t want people staying, like Christmas and new year’s. Here at studentroomrentals.com you could get short term and long term students – easy and no hassle.

Potential issues
Although problems are rare, but you could across someone who rent the flat for a long weekend and come back on Sunday evening to find the ‘guests’ were still there and had changed the locks! We recommend you check the terms of your tenancy or mortgage, your insurance policy and that you aren’t breaking any planning laws with the local council. You should consider that there is a risk of theft or of having your place wrecked, very small, if you rent your property as a whole.

3. Renting longer term

Once two of your three daughters had moved out more permanently you could decide to take a longer term approach and take in a student for a semester. You could be a bit anxious. What if you don’t get on or they try to move the boyfriend in? What if they were really messy or noisy?

Set clear parameters
In the end you have to decide that you would set clear parameters for prospective students and if they weren’t happy they could look elsewhere, sign a clear contract!. You could only accept female students in your spare room to be the most comfortable. You have a single room? so no, they cannot bring their boyfriends home every weekend. They are welcome to have friends round and have had the odd girlfriend staying over with no issues.They could have their own cupboard in the kitchen and cook for themselves but do need to tidy up afterwards, the same as you do. They are responsible for keeping their bedroom clean but you do the rest of the house.

The best will be if you have a separate entrance or your own private space. Some people built in a shower in the student room so you have a bit more privacy. After having students in your home, privacy will be very important. In city areas there is also the possibility of renting your room on a Monday to Friday only basis, so you get the house to yourself at the weekend. Students doing an internship or exchange need a student room for a semester. Students doing a language course will be booking just for a few weeks. So our advice is to look at your length preferences.

4. Sign up at Studentroomrentals.com

When taking into account the above suggestions, the next step is to become a host of your spare room. You could sign up at our platfrom and we take care of everything! Just add your description, add some nice photo’s and off you go! You will receive a notification of the booking and just accept within 48 hours. We recommend to sign a lease contract with the student and make sure you set clear boundaries.

5. Paying rental income tax on your earnings

Great! easy way to make some money but we would like to notify you about Mr Taxman who will knock on the door. Basically, you could deduct all costs to hardly pay any rental income tax. Also check with your accountant as some countries charge more then other countries. As an example, the UK goverment’s rent a room scheme means that you can earn up to £7,500 each year tax free.
You will need to check with your mortgage provider that they have no objections to you renting a room. It is also very important to make sure your household insurance allows for this.

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