Bargain Bedrooms

Written by Nargis Lalee and Calum Fraser

As the credit crunch continues to bite, people are increasingly turning to new ways of making ends meet. Spareroom.co.uk reveals that letting a spare room in Edinburgh can cover almost half the average mortgage.

With the housing market considerably slowing, more people are looking into government legislation allowing income of up to £4250 a year tax-free from renting out previously unutilised space, coming out at 48 percent of the average Edinburgh home owners monthly payments.

Spareroom.co.uk’s figures reveal “27,000 more homeowners have taken a lodger in the last 12 months, an increase of 8.3 per cent” across the UK.

Edinburgh has a population of half a million people, of which 62,000 are students renting property.

All of which means that there are many more bargains to be found for those willing to put in the legwork. Sites such as Gumtree.co.uk or Easyroommate.com have rooms available in the center of Edinburgh from as little as £230 per month, well below that being paid by many for student hall residences.

As comparison, residents at Napier University pay around £320 per month, bills not included.

Lodgers have to be quick though, despite the market stalling when it comes to selling properties, a brief look on websites reveals competition for rooms is fierce. One landlord tells of finding a lodger “within an hour” of placing an online advert.