How to Find a Lodger

If this is the first time you’re considering the prospect of looking for and finding a lodger, it’s recommended to be familiar with the basics first, like the advantages and disadvantages of a lodger, and more importantly, what your legal obligations are as a lodger landlord.

Once you’ve done your research and due diligence, the next step is to find yourself a suitable lodger.

What kind of Lodger do you want?

The first step – before looking for a lodger – is to determine what kind of lodger you want! Creating a profile of your ideal lodger is critical, because the last thing you want to do is live with someone that makes you uncomfortable.

Here is a list of questions you may want to ask yourself:

  • What gender would you prefer to house share with?
  • Does age matter? Some landlords prefer to find lodgers their own age so they can partake in social events together.
  • Do you accept pets? Many landlords don’t accept pets, but those that do often charge a premium. Plus, because there is such a shortage of landlords that accept pets, it’s often very easy to find lodgers if pets are permitted.
  • Do you allow smokers?
  • Is their work schedule important? For example, consider if it would be an issue if they work night shifts.
  • How long do you want to offer a rental period for? Are you looking for a short-term or long-term lodger?
  • Is your property/room more suited for a particular type of lodger? For example, is it more suitable for students or the elderly? If you targeting an audience your property is suitable for, you’re more likely to have better success.

Once you have decided on your prospective lodger’s profile, it can assist with the wording of your advert.

Advertising your spare room!

Next step is to advertise your spare room! So let’s run through the two most traditional routes of finding lodgers…

Option 1) Using a Letting Agent

By all means, you can walk directly into your local letting agent, and they’ll be able to find you a perfectly suitable lodger, along with arranging all the viewings and drawing up the lodger agreement contracts.

However, that’s certainly the most expensive solution; using an agent could cost hundreds of pounds, if not more. But if you want someone else to do the work for you, it’s the most suitable option.

Fortunately, there is a cheaper alternative to finding a lodger, which most lodger landlords use…

Option 2) D.I.Y: the process is simple

It’s easier than ever for landlords to find a lodger for themselves in this modern age, because there are so many websites out there that make the process incredibly easy. Perhaps that’s why lodging has become so incredibly popular.

The steps to finding a lodger:

Recommended Lodger finding websites

While there are new websites emerging every day to help assist landlords with finding lodgers, we recommend the ones listed below, simply because they are long-established and already have a remarkably strong audience, therefore proving to be the most effective means of achieving your goal.

These websites will market your property to thousands of prospective lodgers currently looking to rent a spare room:

  • – The UK’s busiest flat and houseshare website
  • Online Letting Agent – there are a vast number of online letting agents to choose from these days, ready to help self-managed landlords find lodgers/tenants quickly and efficiently by marketing their property on the UK’s biggest UK property portals like Rightmove & Zoopla.If you want millions of prospective lodgers/tenants to see your offering, you need your property on Rightmove & Zoopla. An online agent will help you do that for a very reasonable fee (in comparison to a high-street letting agent), approximately £50. Here’s a list of approved online letting agents by Property Investment Project.
  • – Another extremely popular flat and houseshare website.

How much does it cost to find a lodger?

The websites above are mostly free to post an advert, although some of them do offer “premium” packages, which help increase exposure to your advert to achieve more enquiries at a quicker rate. The premium options can be worth paying the extra for, particularly in competitive areas (e.g. London)- you’ll still end up paying significantly less than what you would have to pay a high-street letting agent.

Arrange viewings

As the enquiries start to pour in, the next step is to arrange the viewings and whittle down your list to your best suited lodger.