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08-03-2012, 10:02 PM #1
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does anyone have any suggestions about....
renting a room out to college students? i have my mother's large bedroom/parlor area in my house that is is now sitting empty. i could sure use some cash. i have heard of lady that did this when her husband died. she needed the money and it really helped her out. since i don't know her i can't ask her any questions. we have a college right near us so i have an ideal location. pro's and cons?
- 08-03-2012, 10:23 PM #2
I think someone else on this board has rented to a student for a few months can't recall at the moment who though sorry.
here's what questions comes to mind though-
have you decided what you want for rent and would you want male or female? would meals (or one per day if you want) be included in rent price? assuming that the suite has a kitchenette or would you be sharing your kitchen? providing a microwave $49 or asking them to provide one, a small fridge $99, electric skillet $30 these are the things that come to mind for the rooms. would you be setting aside a shelf of your fridge for them, and a cabinet for their groceries.
you could put up a notice on the college notice boards? in stores-grocery library word of mouth, how do you want to handle interviews? what about references for the tenant? would you rent month to month or require a lease and for how long? one semester. how far are you from school?
08-04-2012, 12:23 AM #3
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Along with what bent said............get some sort of damage deposit. Have a contract, be it by the month or lease.........and STATE THE DETAILS in it.
Some sort of locking door.............could you do that? If you don't want them in your house, you have to be able to lock it.
You didn't state much of what you will be able to "offer"............and what you would have to share...........that makes a big difference. Who controls the heat in the house? You will have to factor that into the rent price...........and water.........will they use your washer and dryer? Lots of things to consider.......
KNOW WHAT YOU PLAN TO DO AND WHAT YOU EXPECT.........before you start the process........after is too late.
08-04-2012, 12:36 AM #4
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well, before i posted i had gone onto the college website and checked out their offcampus postings. i was sort of thinking about 500. a month. that seemed to be what others were asking for a room. i was going to put a microwave in the room. i was thinking that they could use the kitchen. a shelf in the refrigerator. i do not want to have to cook for anyone...fussiness, etc.would drive me crazy. not that i wouldn't offer what i was having then and again. it would be a good place for quiet for them to study. i don't want a party person. they could do their laundry in my basement. i would control the heat. they have parking right in front of my house. ummm.... geesh....so much to think about......i will come back as i think of more....
08-04-2012, 12:43 AM #5
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I would have a rental agreement and a SEPARATE list............to let them know.
Part of it depends on how big of town your are in.............your neighborhood, etc.
Lots to think about...........but it can work out. And the little bit of headaches you might have would be worth the money.
Years ago I rented out 'just a room' a couple of times...........one to a construction worker that came in from out of town..........both were short term but worked out fine..........but it was different.
08-04-2012, 12:44 AM #6
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male or female? not sure. it is totally furnished. bed has temperpedic mattress. there is a couch in there, a lazyboy chair with heat and massage. small flatscreen tv, ......
08-04-2012, 12:54 AM #7
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Did the ads that you checked out have any security deposit listed? I THINK THIS IS IMPORTANT. Call them.............and 'pretend' that you are checking out the rental for yourself...........and ask questions.
I have done this with my rentals MANY TIMES.............just to compare.
08-04-2012, 08:27 AM #8
If they have a grad or doctorate programs you might want to consider these students or juniors or seniors. They may be more reliable and less in party mode. You can also tell friends, people at work, or at church that you are thinking of renting out a room. They may know someone who is reliable and mature to rent out the room. Also, when you do meet with possible renters don't see anything wrong with stating that you do not want any drugs or parties in the house. Just layout what you expect right away. May be a good way to screen renters. If they do not agree right away with what you expect then they may not be who you want.
Peanut has someone renting a room. She may be able to give you some advice. Think it would be a great opportunity for you.
08-04-2012, 11:24 AM #9
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As someone who rented from a family back in my late teens, I say go for it. Seems $500 is reasonable, I was paying $400 a month 15 years ago. I took care of my own food, the woman of the house would offer me dinner if I happened to be home, but I kept odd hours as I worked two jobs and went to school. I did use the washer and dryer, but obviously did not have much to wash, so it was no imposition on the family, but be sure to state that you do not want them "leaving" their laundry and doing other things, you don't want to have to move their stuff to do your own laundry. Also, be sure to be clear about locking the door behind them and such things, sometimes kids tend to forget this sort of thing. I didn't have that problem, but I have been pretty much on my own since I was 16, so I know how to keep myself safe. Ask them to Sharpie marker their foods, that way there is not a question as to who's food is who's should you have other people in the house. You need to discuss "company", are you comfortable with them bringing over a girlfriend or boyfriend to their room, is this a problem for you? The family I lived with had children and even though they knew my BF (who is now my husband) because he was a friend of the family, I did not have him over except when they were away because I didn't think it was right. Also, if they are going to be keeping later hours than you are normally awake, ask them to respectfully keep the noise and lights to a minimum at night, sometimes people have a tendency to turn on every light in the house to make a sandwich, lol. Also, I would stipulate that they clean up after themselves every time they use dishes, wash them or load into the DW, clean the bathroom at least once a week (or more should it seem necessary), if these are all in black and white everybody starts off on the same page and there are no misunderstandings. That's about all I can think of at the moment, but thought I would give you a tenants perspective. The family that I stayed with was very nice and did try to include me when they were watching TV and things like that, which was nice, but I also felt comfortable enough to decline nicely if I wanted to be alone or if I had things to do and your tenant should feel the same way. I have to be honest, I would not have been able to afford a security deposit at the time as I was in dire straits and needed a place to live immediately, you can choose to require that, but it may limit your options, you may instead want to ask for several references to verify the kind of person they are.
08-04-2012, 03:35 PM #10
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yes, definitely set ground rules for guests (overnight or otherwise).
08-04-2012, 07:21 PM #11
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I wrote this post in response to peanut taking in a boarder - I think some of it is applicable (updates at the bottom)
Here are some experiences that I have had that you might find informational:
I rented a room/apartment in a house that I had to share the kitchen with the owners - it was horrible.
They were very dirty and whenever I would complain they would go on and on as to how it was the children's chores and they weren't doing them. I told them that wasn't my problem who was supposed to clean up but it wasn't clean. And then they threw it in my face that I didn't have a regular schedule for cooking. Which was a big fat lie considering that I get off work at 3:30 every day and wanted to eat dinner around 5:30ish.
There other item with that is that they charged me 650. They didn't plan it out very well because they had never run appliances in the "new addition" before I moved in and the electric and water bills increased and they were mad about it. Plus the electric plugs would blow in my apartment - knocking out electric in the upstairs too. I honestly don't think they had a certified electrician wire the new addition properly. Plus there was no mention in the lease that about overnight guests. But they got mad when my sister or boyfriend stayed over.
well I have no idea why the family didn't talk to me about these issues because I was always receptive to conversations but one day the dad of the house just sees be coming out of my apartment and starts screaming his head off at me about he doesn't need me living there and he can take care of his family - blah blah blah. After that incident, I was able to get out of the lease but they kept my security deposit. But I hated living there and was just so happy to leave.
About 4 months ago my BIL, SIL, and 2 kids wanted to move into my basement. I told them that was fine but the set amount for rent was 300. I would make the normal payments for electric of 100 and anything else was there responsibility. And water my normal bill was 85 and anything else was there responsibility.
I am super duper glad I spelled it all out before they moved in and they agreed because the first electric bill after they moved in was 353 dollars. Turns out one of the kids had his winter coat on and told me it was going to snow. It was July. My SIL insisted on turning the AC to 62 degrees. We keep the AC on 81 degrees upstairs. Why should I have to pay 253 dollars more a month then my normal bill for her to be an icicle while we are pretty warm upstairs?
Water bill similar thing - the kids found the water hose and were playing in the water and I let them for about 20 minutes then I turned it off and SIL asks me why I cut it off. I told her we have to pay for that water. 20 minutes was plenty of time to cool off. She should buy them a kiddy pool. She had never lived in a house (always apartments) and didn't really understand the cost of utilities. My water bill for 3 months was 185 more then I normally pay.
we haven't had any problems about the utilities because they pay the difference but I could totally see that extra money I was getting for rent totally gone if I had just given them a set monthly amount and me getting really resentful if they were so cold they needed winter jackets while we are upstairs in t-shirts being warm and me paying for the differences.
Then when it started to cool off it was 76 degrees outside and SIL wanted to turn on the house heat. I told her we weren't doing it. In the summer she set her AC on 62. Now that it was cool outside I wasn't turning on the heat until it was below 62 - I told her she was being ridiculous and to put on a sweater if she was cold.
I'm not saying you should or you shouldn't but some main items to consider
• Time of kitchen use
• Extra money for utilities (the girl in the basement may not share your frugal utility use)
• Communication styles
well - I had just looked up this post because it covered alot of stuff so I didn't have to retype everything.
The update - my extended family moved at in july - which made it an entire year that they were in the basement. We had to share kitchen, bathroom, and laundry. I was so ready for them to move that I almost couldn't stand it. it was fine for a while but then it just got worse and worse and worse in my opinion. my SIL was a stay at home mom - when they first moved in she would cook while I was at work then just reheat the food when her husband came home but as the months went on she kept waiting til 6pm to cook dinner so I had to wait over an hour just to cook for us. she decided she liked washing clothes on the weekends when I needed to wash mine - I explained to her that it would be better if she washed her things when I was at work (I always work 7 - 3:30 mon - fri). She would agree but just kept doing exactly what she wanted. And the worst of it when they left she wanted to argue with me about the final bills because she no longer lived here - claiming they didn't drink any water for an entire month....and she took some of my stuff - towels, washclothes, water bottles, etc. Which I can assure you has but a bee in my bonnet. She asked me for a favor friday and I said no - no more favors. granted she will always be my family but I am not going out of my way for people who treat me like that....You can get anywhere you want to go if you take it one step at a time.....
Debt free - here I come!!!!
08-05-2012, 12:43 AM #12
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I have rented rooms from people---years ago...........and NEVER.............I mean NEVER............shared the food thing. I had my own cupboard and my own 'basket' in the freezer.....never ran into the 'dirty thing' that I couldn't overlook. I washed my dishes and that was it. None of these were long term and I knew it, so to save some money I toughed it out.
Just accept....................THERE ARE ALWAYS ISSUES...............but take care of what you can THINK OF up front and it should make it easier!
08-05-2012, 08:32 AM #13
We brought home a young man from our church who was going to college. That gave me some relief of the empty nest feeling and just enough responsibilities to keeping him straight. His parents were out of the country so I was like a mother figure for him. He had rules to follow but he could come and go as he wanted. He had to let me know if he was not coming home for the night because I don't like people in and out all hours of the night. You got to have patients with them because they have their own life style. For us we only bring in students that we know the family because you don't know anything about that student. Do some research on that person before you agree to their stay. Good luck.
08-05-2012, 11:35 AM #14
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i'm soooo upset......i had been talking daily to my hubs about this. asking him what he thought...he had taken in a teen ager when his daughters were teenagers. so he had 3 teen girls at the time....he said the girl was a total disaster as her parents were in another country and she wanted to run wild, etc. she would not listen..etc. he had to get in touch with her parents and told them he didn't want the responsiblilty anymore. (this was with his first wife, may moons ago) so he had a bad experience. but we were talking and i said this would be different...college students....a goal in life....need to really study, etc. so he had sort of agreed it would be worth trying. i told him to keep thinking about it...we both had to be 100 percent onboard....(no finger pointing later if it was a disaster....).well, this am i said if we are going to do this we had better get a post on the college website...as it is getting late already..make a decision......think some more, he said he doesn't want to do it because he doesn't want to lose his privacy......
just like that..................it is over. i am dissapointed. i don't know what to say.....i feel like i just got hit in the head with a board......unexpected......disapointed...did i say that already? i was all for it.....
08-05-2012, 02:58 PM #15
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Talk to him about losing his privacy "for a short time" might be worth it if you could get a step up on the bills.........show him on paper!
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