According to Zoopla, the most expensive areas of London can command over £2000 per square metre, making the capital city one of the most expensive places to live. With such a hefty price tag on your space, if you are lucky enough to have a spare empty room, why not consider getting some value from your extra area? Read on for a few ideas!

  1. Storage – you could just use your spare room to store all those bits and pieces that you just can’t bear to throw away (they could come in handy one day, couldn’t they?) Although you won’t make any extra income this way, you won’t be paying out money for renting external storage space to store your old furniture and possessions. The other benefit of using your room this way is there is no hassle attached to this arrangement!
  1. Take in a lodger – renting your room to a lodger could seem like the ideal solution, yet the extra income does come with a few strings attached. You’ll have to pay for advertising and put tenancy agreements in place which could mean employing a legal representative. You may need to take any more insurance, plus pay tax on the rent. There is also the worry of ‘stranger danger’ – who exactly are you bringing in to your home? A lodger can be a great way to make some extra income, but consider the pros and cons carefully.
  1. Take in students – renting a room out to a student could be a great option, as the rates tend to be higher than a lodger. However, with the increased rates comes extra work as some student agreements include meals and cleaning as part of the package. Students are usually only there for part of the year; this can be a positive in that it gives you a break, but it also means the income potential is limited. The student is likely to be different each year, which again has it pros and cons – if you don’t get on you don’t have to put up with them forever, but each year you need to re-advertise and re-acclimatise to a new person.
  1. International Language Students – if you don’t want a long term commitment, then taking in international students for short lets could be just the thing for you. However, you may need to help them with their English, plus some social help may be required as well. These type of lets may need extra interaction from you due to the increased support required.
  1. Shared Lives care – if you are looking to give something back to your community, consider becoming involved in Shared Lives. You’ll be given a small allowance to have another adult live with you in your home. It can be a mutually satisfying arrangement but be prepared to offer care and support.
  1. Fostering – opening up your home to a child in need can be extremely satisfying, but also requires time and patience. You will need to be able to offer full-time care and support to a young person who could have behavioural issues. In return you will receive training, support from professionals, an allowance and increased tax threshold, plus you will be doing something for children who need help.
  1. Adoption – for many couples, adoption is the ultimate way to use their spare space. Of course, when you adopt you will not have any income, but the child remains with you in a more permanent relationship.

Hopefully these ideas have inspired you to make the most of your spare room. Why not make the most of that square footage and get a return on your investment?