Earn extra income by renting out your spare space

As we know, the inflation in India is on the rise. The Rupee is falling against the dollar. Recession still exists and everyone is facing the crunch. In such hard times, an innovative way of making extra income has come up – renting out the spare space in your home.

Using the extra space in your house to provide lodging for tourists or rental housing for tenants is a trend that is catching up fast. The house owners who have a room or two extra that they do not need, usually list it on a website. Print media like newspapers can also be used to advertise for the same. Typically, it is a furnished rental. Interested individuals can choose the housing that suits their needs, fits in their budget and has a convenient location. Then, the persons can contact the corresponding host and negotiate a deal to come to an agreement. Various aspects like amount to be paid as rent, duration of the stay, people coming over to visit etc. can be decided.

The sudden growth of this service is fascinating. It can be attributed to several factors such as – increase in the number of people travelling extensively, increase in the number of students and workers migrating to different cities and shortage of separate space for everyone in urban areas. Also, the lodging in hotels as well as acquiring your own house in metropolitan cities has become extremely expensive. Favourable policy changes by some governments have encouraged their residents. For example, the Department for Work and Pensions of the UK government issued a statement saying  “Letting people take on a lodger and fill a previously empty room clearly makes better use of our social housing stock.” Jane Ellison, a Tory member of the Commons work and pensions committee, said: “If more people decide it’s appropriate for them to do this it will really help others, especially young single people who are struggling to find an affordable home.” Thus, for short to mid-term stays, renting the spare space in a house has become a popular option.

Consequently, a number of portals have come up to help with such arrangements. This includes websites like www.roomnhouse.com in India as well as www.storeatmyhouse.com and www.sparefoot.com. Individual agents are also working as service providers for the same. By earning a decent percentage of the deals as commission, these entrepreneurs are making a good name for themselves. A number of jobs are being generated in the process. Hence, it is safe to say that renting out spare space in homes is not only beneficial to the hosts and occupants but also to the economy in general!

It is quite an easy and convenient way to ear some additional income without compromising one’s current job. After all, what better way to fund your next holiday or sponsor the redoing of your kitchen than this? “Renting out the extra space in my house is helping me make a good income and cover all my expenses smoothly” says Maitreya Shishupal, a resident of Mulund, who took in a student last month. The tenants seem to be happy with the system too. Mubeen Sayyed, a business executive, said “My job requires me to travel a lot and living out of a suitcase in hotels can get lonely. Renting a room in a home is a cheaper alternative to that. Also, staying with warm and wonderful hosts can be a great personal experience.”

Suprisingly, money isn’t the only goal in mind for some house owners,, who prefer not to live alone even if they can afford to. However for some people, taking in a stranger is a cause for concern for security reasons. That is why, most of the websites designed to help hosts and lodgers place this responsibility on the two parties for their personal safety. A variety of insurance policies are avaiable related to the same.

Other had following suggestions to give, from their experience –

  • Tips for hosts –
    • Interview the possible lodgers.
    • Ask them to provide references from employers or previous landlords.
    • Use the interview as an opportunity to question anything that concerns you!
    • Be clear about the facilities you are ready to provide, the duration of the stay, the rent etc.
    • Enquire if the tenant is going to have visitors over and how often.
    • Finally, make sure that the stay is a pleasant one for both of you!


  • Tips for tenants –
    • Pay the rent on time.
    • Ensure that you do not cause inconvenience to the owners.
    • Do not disrupt the lifestyle of the house owner and his family during your stay.
    • Looking at the big picture, we can surely say that the business of renting out your spare space is here to stay!


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