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One in ten property owners in UK renting out a room, research reveals

The Rent A Room entrepreneurs collect an average of £182 per month and there is currently a potential £52 billion of rental income to be made in the UK from renting out spare rooms. However, nine out of 10 people, 92%, with a spare room still choose not to rent it out though there are 3.7 million homeowners who have considered doing so, the research from Santander Mortgages also shows.
More than a third, 35%, of those who rent out a spare room do so to help out a friend or family member. A further one in five, 18%, do so because they need the additional income to meet their outgoings whilst 17% need the money to supplement their disposable income.
Homeowners in the South of the UK accumulate the most amount of rental income from their spare rooms. One in seven, 14%, of people in the South West and one in ten, 11%, of those in the South East rent out a spare room. Meanwhile people living in the East Midlands are less enthusiastic about taking in a lodger with just 4% doing so.
Three quarters of UK homeowners would not consider renting out a spare room with more than half of them, 52%, not wanting to do so because they don't want a stranger in their home. One in three, 33%, keep the spare room free purposely for guests, 21% do not need the additional income and 21% use the room for storage.
Of the one in four, 25%, who would consider renting out their spare room, 11% would do so if they needed to financially and 15% would rent out the room if a friend or family member needed it. Some 7% would consider it if they could find an appropriate tenant and 4% would do so if they were able to make decent money from it.
The findings also reveal that storage space is the most popular use of a spare room in the UK with 37% of rooms used for this purpose. More than a third, 35%, of people use their spare room as an office whilst 3% use the spare room as a nursery.
‘It's interesting to see that so many people are weathering the economic storm and showing such entrepreneurial spirit by renting out spare rooms in their home. This can make a real difference to how much money you have left at the end of the month. However anyone with a mortgage who is renting out a room should speak to their mortgage lender first to check they aren't breaching the terms and conditions of their agreement,’ said Phil Cliff, director of Santander Mortgages.