MSN Real Estate had a short piece on “How to rent out a room in your house.” Helene Prince, one of the commenters is a Director of Property at Caldwell banks and the first thing she mentions is:
..remember when you are thinking about bringing in a tenant is that it’s a business deal, not a friendship,..
This is why I advocate against having a friend renting a room from you. Sure, you may have been good roommates in college or in an apartment and you hope this will carry over when he or she is renting a room from you.
But when you’re the homeowner, you’re profiting from the living situation in terms of building equity and extra income. Because of the profit-gaining situation, it’s a business relationship. When you make decisions such as raising the rent price or cutting amenities, these are business decisions that are usually decided by yourself because of necessity. When you’re roommate friend no longer agrees with the changes or adjustments you’ve made, things can turn sour.
The agent also says to be prepared to think “carefully about whether they want to live with someone else.”
I couldn’t agree with this anymore. For this reason, I detailed a litmus test in my Quick start Guide to see if you’re ready to take the plunge to becoming a “live-in landlord.” If you’re thinking about renting out a room and haven’t already downloaded the guide, take the time and do so.
It’s rare that I find articles helpful to “live-in landlords” because either the author either has no direct experience with renting out a room or the advice is just so broad that it just logical advice that anyone could have written.