On the house: How to make extra cash from your home

From taking in a lodger to renting out a parking space, Chiara Cavaglieri offers some ideas to generate income

If you're strapped for cash then how about using your biggest asset – your home – to coin in an extra £10,000 a year? There are plenty of obvious – and not so obvious – ways to turn your property into a money-spinner. Some involve more time and effort than others, but all can bring in some much-needed extra cash.

The rise in "collaborative consumption" and "peer-to-peer renting" websites makes it easy to generate income from your otherwise untapped assets.

Renting out your spare space – £4,200 per year

Have a think about how much space you have in your home that you don't need. Perhaps you have an empty loft, or don't use your garage?

Storemates.co.uk claims to be the UK's largest storage sharing website, and it says users earn thousands of pounds a year by renting out their spare spaces to others.

"Once residents start to see things they own as having a rental value, often far higher than the price paid for it, then the idea of sharing assets with strangers becomes very attractive financially," says Shaff Prabatani, co-founder of Storemates.

Another similar site is Storenextdoor.com. Members of the site with space to rent earn an average of £70 per month for a loft, and as much as £120 per month for a garage. The company takes care of payment platforms, the legal contract and the personal liability and contents insurance for both parties.

It is usually free to advertise your storage space – the websites take their cut when you get a booking. Storemates take an administration fee equivalent to the first two weeks of your listed storage price, while at Storenextdoor it is 23 per cent of the monthly rental price to use its services.

If your garden is a bit of a showstopper, list it on Rentmygarden.com and rent it out for one-off social occasions such as wedding receptions, parties and barbecues, or even on an ongoing basis to someone who wants to grow their own food. Prices start from £25 to advertise on the site but could make up to £2,000 a year.

Rent your parking space – £2,000 per year

If you have a driveway or parking space and live in a big city, near an airport, or even near a popular attraction or events ground, you could rent it out for extra cash.

People using online marketplaces such as Parkatmyhouse.com, ParkLet.co.uk and YourParkingSpace.co.uk earn an average of £40 a week, but if you live in an area where parking is hard to find or charges are high, you could make even more.

Many of the sites will draw up a contract stating you are not responsible for the vehicles or any items left inside them. You will also need to call your insurer before turning your property into a car park as they may want to add restrictions to your policy during the rental period.

If the site handles the money side of things, look out for a secure payment platform. Always be careful about how much information you're sharing, and stick with sites that offer secure messaging services. You'll need to declare extra income to the taxman, and be warned: HM Revenue & Customs is cracking down on this, so either add it to your tax return if you fill one out, or contact your tax office to let them know about your extra source of income.

Get a lodger – earn £4,250

One handy little tax break when it comes to making money from your property is you can take in a lodger and pocket the income tax-free. You can earn up to £4,250 a year via the Government's Rent-a-Room Scheme – if the rent's any higher you'll have to pay tax on the difference.

Local shops and colleges are useful places to advertise a room, but you can also use the listings site Gumtree.com or websites such as Spareroom.co.uk and Easyroommate.co.uk. The downside is you'll have to share your living space with someone else.

Another option is to rent out a spare room on a Monday to Friday basis. You earn less rent but it can be less intrusive than a full-time lodger.

"The number of people lodging in the UK doubled to almost a million last year, so for homeowners looking to make money it's a great way to make extra tax-free cash," says Judy Niner, founder of MondaytoFriday.com, which specialises in weekday lodgers.

You need to inform your mortgage provider, and if you have been claiming a single-person council tax discount, you'll need to let your council know you have a lodger.

When looking for a suitable tenant, always ask for references and follow up with current employers and previous landlords.

To comply with the Rent-a-Room rules, the room must be furnished and in your family home, so you can't rent out a self-contained flat. You will also need to have an annual gas safety check, and your furniture and furnishings must meet safety standards. Next, get in touch with your household contents and buildings insurance provider to see if you're covered. If you don't, you could invalidate your policy and run into trouble if you make a claim for theft or fire.

A few more ideas

Turn your home into a one-bed B&B by advertising a spare room or sofa bed for short-term lets on Airbnb.com. It is free to list but the site takes a 3 per cent cut on bookings; guests pay a booking fee of 6-12 per cent.

Ecomodo.com and RentMyItems.com introduce people with items, such as power tools and kitchen gear, to people who want to rent them. On both sites it's free to list items and no commission is charged.

Drivers can make cash by offering empty car seats, on regular trips or one-offs. List your journey on GoCarShare.com and set a price.

If you've got time on your hands, use TaskHub.co.uk to help people with chores and errands, such as gardening and basic DIY. People list tasks they need doing and the price they will pay and you bid on the jobs.

There are more tips on TheSavvyEarner.com.

Case study: Earning £65 a month from a space which had previously been filled with junk

Zoe Morrison, a 34-year-old from Brighton and Hove, started renting out her garage space via Storemates when she quit her job last November to spend more time with her children.

After starting a blog Ecothriftyliving.com, Zoe decided it was time to have a clear out and make good use of the available space.

She rents out a third of the garage space to a local lady who uses it to store archive paperwork, and now makes £65 a month out of space that was previously full of junk.

Zoe and her husband are using sites such Freegle and Freecycle to get the things they need for the house and are considering renting to students in the future.

"We are also hopefully going to do a home exchange within the UK this summer which will save us a lot of money on a family holiday," she says.

Discover more property articles at Homes and Property
News
The guide, since withdrawn, used illustrations and text to help people understand the court process (Getty)
newsMinistry of Justice gets law 'terribly wrong' in its guide to courts
News
Bobbi Kristina Brown with her mother Whitney Houston in 2011
people
News
Starting the day with a three-egg omelette could make people more charitable, according to new research
scienceFeed someone a big omelette, and they may give twice as much, thanks to a compound in the eggs
News
Top Gun actor Val Kilmer lost his small claims court battle in Van Nuys with the landlord of his Malibu mansion to get back his deposit after wallpapering over the kitchen cabinets
people
PROMOTED VIDEO
News
The actress Geraldine McEwan was perhaps best known for playing Agatha Christie's detective, Miss Marple (Rex)
peopleShe won a Bafta in 1991 for her role in Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit
News
newsPatrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
News
Robert Fraser, aka Groovy Bob
peopleA new show honours Robert Fraser, one of the era's forgotten players
Life and Style
Torsten Sherwood's Noook is a simple construction toy for creating mini-architecture
tech
Sport
David Silva celebrates with Sergio Aguero after equalising against Chelsea
footballChelsea 1 Manchester City 1
News
i100
Property search
Property search
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Online Media Sales Trainee

£15000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Now our rapidly expanding and A...

Recruitment Genius: Public House Manager / Management Couples

£15000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you passionate about great ...

Recruitment Genius: Production Planner

£20000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing reinforcing s...

Recruitment Genius: General Factory Operatives

£18000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing reinforcing s...

Day In a Page

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

Mussolini tried to warn his ally of the danger of bringing the country to its knees. So should we, says Patrick Cockburn
Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign

The short stroll that should be our walk of shame

Courting the global elite has failed to benefit Britain, as the vast disparity in wealth on display in the capital shows
Homeless Veterans appeal: The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty

Homeless Veterans appeal

The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty
Prince Charles the saviour of the nation? A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king

Prince Charles the saviour of the nation?

A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king
How books can defeat Isis: Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad

How books can defeat Isis

Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

She may be in charge of minimising our risks of injury, but the chair of the Health and Safety Executive still wants children to be able to hurt themselves
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse

The open loathing between Obama and Netanyahu just got worse

The Israeli PM's relationship with the Obama has always been chilly, but going over the President's head on Iran will do him no favours, says Rupert Cornwell
French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

Fury at British best restaurants survey sees French magazine produce a rival list
Star choreographer Matthew Bourne gives young carers a chance to perform at Sadler's Wells

Young carers to make dance debut

What happened when superstar choreographer Matthew Bourne encouraged 27 teenage carers to think about themselves for once?
Design Council's 70th anniversary: Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch

Design Council's 70th anniversary

Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch
Dame Harriet Walter: The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment

Dame Harriet Walter interview

The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment
Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Critics of Tom Stoppard's new play seem to agree that cerebral can never trump character, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's winter salads will make you feel energised through February

Bill Granger's winter salads

Salads aren't just a bit on the side, says our chef - their crunch, colour and natural goodness are perfect for a midwinter pick-me-up
England vs Wales: Cool head George Ford ready to put out dragon fire

George Ford: Cool head ready to put out dragon fire

No 10’s calmness under pressure will be key for England in Cardiff
Michael Calvin: Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links