Lodgers Taking in a lodger could help with your household costs

You may want to consider taking in a lodger in return for payment. This may be a good way to help pay your rent and share the cost of some of your household bills.

A lodger is a person who rents a room in your home and shares your facilities. There is usually a formal arrangement in place that sets out what rooms a lodger can use and those that they share with the rest of the household – such as the kitchen, living room and bathroom - for an agreed payment.

Please remember, you must not sublet the whole of your home or you will be in breach of your tenancy agreement.

You need to think about whether you are prepared to have a lodger living in your home. Having a lodger means you may be sharing your home with a stranger. Although you will have company, it also means you will be giving up some of your privacy. So you need to decide whether you are prepared to do that.

If you have children, your number one priority is to make sure that their home is safe and you may not want someone living with you especially if you don’t know much about them or their background.

If you do want to have a lodger living with you, it is important that you choose the person carefully. It is a good idea to do a background check for your own safety and security.

Although your lodger may have their own room, they do not have exclusive use of it and do not have any tenancy rights.
Only assured or fixed-term tenants have the right to take in lodgers. But:

  • Taking in a lodger must not make your home overcrowded.
  • You must have our permission before you take in a lodger.
  • Your lodger will not have security of tenure like you. They are not part of your tenancy with us and do not have rights to your home.
  • You need to make sure that your home is in a fit and proper condition to take in a lodger; furniture must comply with fire safety regulations and all electrical equipment must be safe to use.
  • Do I need permission to take in a lodger?

    Yes – you must have our permission to take in a lodger. You must tell us the name of the lodger when you apply to us. If we give permission it will be for that particular lodger only. If your lodger leaves and you would like to take in another, you will need to request our permission again.

  • Will having a lodger affect my benefits?

    If you receive any benefits, you must tell the appropriate council’s benefits team that you have a lodger. Taking in a lodger may reduce the amount of benefit you receive as their payment to you will count as ‘income’. You should consider how much you will charge a lodger and whether this is a better financial option for you or not.

    If you are a Universal Credit claimant, a lodger is not included in the calculation of the number of bedrooms you need and a deduction will apply to any help with paying your rent that you are entitled to. However, the payment you receive from your lodger will not be treated as income and you could use it to help pay your rent.

  • Will I have to pay income tax on the income I receive from my lodger?

    If the income from letting a room is more than a certain amount known as threshold, then you may have to pay income tax. It’s a good idea to get independent advice about the tax implications for having a lodger.

  • Will my Council Tax increase?

    If you are a single person and receive a single occupant Council Tax discount, you need to let the council know as you may no longer be eligible.

  • Will having a lodger affect my home insurance?

    You should contact your home insurance provider to tell them you are taking in a lodger and make sure you are still covered. Tell your lodger if they need their own insurance.

  • How much should I charge a lodger?

    What you charge your lodger will depend on what facilities you are providing for them. To give yourself an idea of how much to charge look at adverts in the local newspaper or on websites such as Spare Room to see what other people in your area charge for similar accommodation.

    Don’t forget having a lodger may reduce the Housing Benefit or other benefits you receive because their payment to you will count as ‘income’.

  • Can I evict my lodger if things don’t work out or I need the room back?

    A lodger never becomes part of your tenancy with us. They do not have rights to your home and you will be responsible for legally evicting your lodger if you want them to leave.

    However, if you want to evict your lodger you must provide them with a reasonable amount of time before they have to leave. When you take in a lodger it is a good idea to write an agreement that clearly sets out your and their rights and responsibilities that you can both sign and agree to. You may be able to find useful template agreements online.

To request permission to take in a lodger please complete this form

Please note that we will carry out a Right to Rent check on the person you are requesting to live with you.
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