That’s a pretty eye popping number (and like with most things, I would take it with a grain of salt). That being said, it seems like a super easy way to earn some extra passive income with something you already own.
Rentable spaces can include your basement, attic, garage, bedroom, and closet. If you don't have any extra space in your house, you can even buy a storage shed for a pretty low cost and rent it out as a side investment.
How much rent you can earn will ultimately be based on the size, security, privacy, and accessibility of the space for rent (we go into the various factors in more detail below). Neighbor is an online marketplace for these types of rentals: Think Airbnb for storage spaces.
I have used their service and it is easy to use, straightforward and legit. This article will cover Neighbor's listing process, some tips on how to boost the performance of your rental listing and some of their key terms and conditions. This includes some pretty cool protections they provide (including a rental payment guarantee!).
Ok, let's get into it.
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The information contained in this post is for informational purposes only. It is not a recommendation to buy or invest, and it is not financial, investment, legal, or tax advice. You should seek the advice of a qualified professional before making any investment or other decisions relating to the topics covered by this article.
Neighbor's Listing Process
I opened up an account with Neighbor for a basement rental and it was a very easy process. They suggested I charge $34 a month to rent out a 10X10X9 space in my basement. Granted, that's not a ton of money, but I was pretty tight with my requirements.
They let you determine how often a renter may access their items (daily, weekly, monthly, infrequently) and during what times (daytime, evening, 24/7). One feature I liked was that you could require approved renters to contact you whenever they want access to the space.
Based on my listing experience, it seems like you can get better rents if your space:
- is a private space (i.e., only one renter in the space)
- is climate-controlled
- is smoke-free
- has security cameras
- has lockable doors
- has a private entrance (has a separate entrance directly to the space)
- has smoke detectors
- is pet-free, and
- has no stairs
The point is your results may vary.
You can boost the attractiveness of your listing by enabling “Quick Move-In” which grants instant approval to the applicant and allows them to move in within 24 hours of the reservation. Not sure how I feel about the instant approval, but it’s an option.
They also allow you to offer a 50% discount to renters for the first month, which according to Neighbor makes you twice as likely to get a rental filled.
Speaking of vacancy, I could not find any official numbers on typical vacancy rates, but the good thing is that you are not really losing out if the space remains vacant.
It’s just extra space after all – you are no worse off financially if you can't rent it out via Neighbor.
Neighbor Offers Some Nice Protections
Neighbor has a $1 million host guarantee, which protects you up to $1 million for personal liability. Details of that insurance are provided by Neighbor on this page. They also have scam prevention measures, like photo ID requirements, as well as phone and email verification.
If the renter is late or stops paying, you receive guaranteed payouts for as long as their space is occupied (up to two months). I actually did a double-take when I read that on their Terms of Service.
Finally, you are allowed to review the description of items to be stored in your space and you have the option to reject any applicant, which is nice. Neighbor also has a list of prohibited items, which takes some of the decision-making out of your hands, but in a good way.
I think these guys have struck a masterful chord with this product. People looking for storage will likely pay far less than if they went to a traditional self-storage facility or parking lot and won’t be subject to long-term contracts.
And the average person who just wants to make a little extra money can do so in a really passive way.
I have to admit, I am pretty impressed by this idea. While I do not think most people are going to become rich renting out some basement space, I think it is brilliant because it allows you to make money from something you already have but are not using.
You can get a nice boost to your income for basically no work.
If you are interested in this option, just click here to get started. As you can see by the link, I am an actual user of the product. By going through the link, you will get a $50 Amazon gift card when your space gets rented.
Want to learn about other ideas to make additional income? Check out our other articles on that topic, including one that discusses 15 ways to make truly passive income with no money to start.