How Much to Charge for a Room
Naturally you want to know how much to charge for a room.
But the first question is actually whether you can rent rooms
at all. There are towns that are too small or just have too many
cheap apartments available. You may not get any response at all
to an advertisement to rent a room in these places, no matter
what the rent. So how do you determine this?
To begin with, usually towns with high rent have a high demand
for rooms. Because of the high rents, people are looking for
cheaper alternatives to apartments. Also because of the high
rents, single people share apartments with others.
In these cases, most roommates inevitably have problems with
splitting bills. They have problems with what to do if one is
late with their share of the rent. They have problems with who
made which phone calls. They have problems with who gets to make
or break the rules, and more. When these renters see a room for
rent in a nice home, with everything from local calls to cable
TV included in the rent, they love the idea.
If you aren't sure about the demand in your own town, and
you already own your home, you can just try renting a room. All
you risk to find out is the cost of an advertisement or two.
In fact, if you already have an idea what you can rent a room
for, you can skip the rest of this chapter and go right to chapter
three for advice on how to find renters.
Determining Demand for Room Rentals
If you are thinking about moving to a new town, or you are
going to buy your first home where you are, it is a different
case. At least it is different if you plan to rent rooms to make
your purchase more affordable. Knowing whether there is demand
for rooms to rent and how much you can charge is crucial in this
case. How do you determine this?
Start with the local paper. If you can't get one from where
you are, look for one online. Just enter "newspaper"
and the name of the town in any search engine. If there just
isn't a local paper, the town is probably too small to consistently
find renters in.
What you want to look for is a category in the classified
advertising section of the paper for room rentals. It might be
labeled "Rooms For Rent," "Room Rentals,"
or just "Rooms." Some papers even have sub-categories
for "Furnished Rooms," and "Unfurnished Rooms."
Any category at all for rooms is a good sign, indicating that
renting rooms is a regular occurrence in that town.
With or without a separate category, are there any ads in
Sunday's paper for rooms for rent? This too is a good sign, and
gives you your first clue as to how much rooms rent for. Take
notes on how much the rent is, what it includes, where the house
is located, and anything else that seems relevant.
If over the course of a week or so, you can put together notes
on at least six or seven room rentals, you will have some idea
about how much you can charge. Some examples of ads and how to
determine how much to charge for a room can be found on the folowing
Determining Room Rental Rates