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Rent by room

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Not done it, but a few things to consider.

If people are just taking a room as oppose to the full property, they will expect things like bills included. You may find that the numbers don't work taking that into account, especially as the rent would be less per room than the whole flat. Depends where it is and the level of rent you can charge, as bills will be similar anywhere. You've also got to furnish it, which is an initial expense plus an ongoing one in replacing items. You're likely to get a faster turnover of tenants, so you my need to decorate more frequently.

If you've got a mortgage, you'll need to check with the lender. Shouldn't be an HMO as far as the council is concerned, but the lender may view differently. Same with your insurer, as they usually ask if it's being let to a single name on the AST.

If you still think it works, have a look on Spareroom, plus places like Rightmove and see what other rooms go for, the standard, what bills are included, are cleaners supplied etc. I suspect it won't be worth the hastle for just two rooms, especially with COVID putting people off sharing with strangers.

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Hi Mark

I've done this for a 2 bed (with en-suite) flat in London where the room rates are high enough to cover outgoings and provide sufficient profit. The only time it's been vacant was between March to July this year when one of the tenants went back to Germany due to the lockdown, but other than that both rooms have been rented out. Both rooms have always been let out to females in full-time employment, one gets the en-suite and the other gets the main bathroom so pretty much they both have their own bathroom.

As Dino mentions, check with the freeholder, mortgage and insurers if applicable to your situation. Also, depending on your council, they may have additional licensing where 3 or more unrelated persons could require HMO license. So for example, in Tower Hamlets if you had an unmarried couple in the en-suite room plus another person in the 2nd room, it would make it licensable. 

Spareroom is great as you get to filter the applicants and use your own screening questions beforehand. If they qualify and are interested you can use a separate referencing service to reference the tenants. 

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