Looking for extra money? Try downstairs

Joy and Dick Moore’s children moved out of the family’s four-bedroom Victorian in New York years ago, but the couple — now retired — haven’t downsized.

Instead, in 2014, the Moores listed one of their rooms on Airbnb, a vacation rental website.  Read more by clicking here.

Renting out part of your home — particularly if you have a separate space such as a basement or garage apartment — can be a great way to supplement your income. It might allow you to take on a larger house than you could otherwise afford, to live in an expensive area, afford a splurge, or perhaps just save more.

What it will take: You must be comfortable sharing your living space with someone else. And you’ll have to do your due diligence to make sure you’re letting to the right person and that you’re protected legally and financially. Even if your tenant is in a separate apartment, it’s usually attached to your home, so you may hear or run into each other frequently.

How long you need to prepare: You’ll need long enough to make sure the room or apartment you’re renting meets legal tenant requirements in your area, plus enough time to advertise for, find and screen applicants.

Do it now: Protect yourself. A paying tenant in your home may not be covered under your regular homeowners’ insurance policy — you may need landlord insurance or similar. That’s true whether you’re putting a long-term tenant in place or renting a room on a short-term basis, such as listing it on Airbnb.com. Talk to your insurer about the right product for your needs.

 

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