A live-in landlord, also known as a resident landlord, is a landlord that rents out part of their property to tenants while also living in the property themselves.
While sharing your home with a lodger may be financially appealing, there are potential downsides to the situation too. This blog takes a look at some of the pros and cons of living with lodgers.
- Rental income
Rental income is the main reason homeowners decide to rent out part of their property to a lodger. The additional income can help support the landlord, especially if they are out of work or need to increase their income.
Living with your lodger means they are not far away and cannot avoid you if they owe you rent.
- Company for the landlord
Some people let part of their property in order to have the company of another person living in their home. This is common amongst the older generation who may have lost their partner and feel lonely. A kind and trustworthy tenant can provide the landlord with an increased feeling of security.
- Maintaining the property
If your home is split into a separate flat or the property is a large house, letting part of it out could help to keep it in good condition. It is better to have someone actively living in the rooms rather than them being left empty and neglected. Additionally, if the property needs any repairs you’ll know about them immediately if you live with the lodger.
- Dealing with disputes
If you live with your lodger and an issue arises, you can deal with it quicker than if you were renting a separate property for them. Communication is generally easier when you see the lodger regularly.
Living with a lodger also allows you to keep an eye on their behaviour and immediately put a stop to anything they should not be doing.
- Better mortgage rates
As a live-in landlord, you can take advantage of owner-occupied mortgages which are typically lower than non-owner occupied mortgage rates. A non-owner occupied mortgage would be needed if you are renting out a separate property to the one you live in.
- Lodger fails to pay rent
If the lodger fails to pay rent, you will be faced with a potentially awkward living situation if you feel uncomfortable approaching them about their outstanding payments.
- Lodger causes trouble
The lodger may be noisy and disruptive and could even be involved in criminal activities which could affect your quality of life. Sometimes, people just do not see eye to eye and what can start as a small annoyance can soon grow into a very stressful situation.
- Lodger ruins the property
Although the lodger may seem like a nice person, in reality, they may be unhygienic, messy and even cause damage to your property. As well as neglecting their own living area, they may leave shared areas such as hallways and bathrooms in a condition you are unhappy with.
- The lodger may hassle you
If the lodger has a question or any issues with the property, they could take it upon themselves to knock your door to report a problem and even go as far as constantly nagging you. Additionally, if they lock themselves out they’ll be knocking your door for you to let them in.
- Difficulty evicting the lodger
If things go wrong and you want to remove the lodger it may not be as easy as it seems. Generally, lodgers do not have a legal tenancy agreement in place. This allows the landlord to serve the lodger with a ‘notice to quit’ giving them a sufficient period of time to leave the property. However, if a lodger ignores the notice or refuses to go, you may be forced to change the locks when they are not in the property or even take legal action against them.
It is clear that there are good points and bad points to living with lodgers, and landlords should take all of the above factors on board before becoming a live-in landlord.
The key is to try and find someone kind and trustworthy to look after your property with respect and pay the rent on time. If issues do arise, addressing them politely with the lodger is the best way to avoid major disputes developing. Landlords and lodgers that work together are more likely to have a successful living arrangement.