How to Turn Your Own Home Into an Investment

Written by: David Wilkening

If you wondered whether you can you earn money in real estate without buying a property, the answer is yes. Where? Your own home, in fact.

How? There are various answers and not all of them will appeal to you, of course (and not to me, either). But perhaps the best one is to rent part of your present home. You probably have room.

In fact, studies show most homeowners have far more room they need (or use). Most homes have at least one bedroom that is probably only used for storage, much less as a place to sleep.

So who would rent it?

Perhaps a local student. Or your market might be a single person perhaps new to the area who wants little more than one sleeping room, a bathroom and perhaps access to the kitchen.

This will probably not generate enough income for you to pay off your mortgage or house payment, but any room that has a separate entrance and separate space of some kind will probably do just fine for one person. Even single retirees might be among possible tenants.

Some parents of college students I know actually rent out their homes to siblings. And yes, they are required to pay rent, either through a student loan or from a part-time job. Nothing wrong with that, though I could not bring myself to do it when my own son (briefly) was enrolled at a local college.

What else to do with a home?

—If you are still involved in business, consider working where you live (that’s an option no matter what your occupation). Various tax deductions are applicable.

—If you don’t have room in your house, how about a garage space? Even parking spaces are hard to find in some areas. You won’t make enough money to retire on but why not earn some income from it?

—No garage? Perhaps you have a large parcel of land. And perhaps you live near, say, a stadium where sporting events take place that draw a lot of visitors. You can charge for parking (this is something I have done and other than damage to the grass in your yard, it is overall an attractive option). Or even rent that space to RV owners, who often find that those cheap places to park their campers are no longer so economical these days.

—Storage. A lot of warehouses are making huge profits. And if you can’t afford to buy one or simply don’t want to get into that business, perhaps you have room for others to store their stuff. A garage, basement or attic might be perfect. Do be sure your insurance covers it, however.

—Finally, how about a vacation rental? This has become big business even in areas that aren’t the best-known tourist attractions. Rent a home at peak season and bring your family to visit friends or relatives or even an inexpensive hotel. It can also be a vacation for the entire family. Advertise your own place for free on various Internet sites.

Leaving home with the thought your vacation is being paid for by renters will make it perhaps your best trip ever. ####


How to Turn Your Own Home Into an Investment

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