0:02 AM, 9th June 2023, About 4 months ago 5
With renters increasingly scrambling to find budget-friendly housing options in the UK’s rental crisis, one firm offers a simple solution.
Flat-sharing site SpareRoom says that homeowners with a spare bedroom should be encouraged to take in a lodger to help boost supply to renters.
It says there are more than 20 million empty bedrooms and a small proportion of those could be used to house tenants.
And the homeowner would benefit from an income and deal with rising bills.
Matt Hutchinson, a director of SpareRoom, said: “What’s clear is that affordable rents are becoming even more scarce, at a time when they’re needed more than ever.
“One simple solution is to encourage more homeowners to rent their spare bedrooms and create more supply.
“There are over 20 million empty bedrooms in owner-occupied properties in England alone.”
He added: “Freeing a small percentage of those up would not only create desperately needed supply for renters, it would also help homeowners cope with rising interest rates and an ongoing cost of living crisis.
“Financial savings aren’t the only benefit.
“Living as a lodger can be a great way to try a new area without committing to a year’s tenancy.”
SpareRoom also points out that living as a lodger can lead to substantial savings for renters.
Its data reveals that, on average, renters can pocket an extra £89 every month – while lodgers in London can save an impressive £117 choosing to lodge instead of sharing with flatmates.
This translates to an annual saving of £1,068 and £1,404, respectively.
Among the top UK cities, after the capital, lodgers stand to gain the most significant monthly savings in Manchester (£504) and Edinburgh (£480).
However, SpareRoom says that by opting not to live with property owners, renters are missing out on a quarter of all available accommodations on its site.
The firm also says that as the rental market continues to grapple with supply and demand challenges, becoming a lodger is a viable alternative to reasonably priced housing.
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