You may be on the lookout for ways to turn valuable room in your garage into income. Depending on where you live and your available garage space, you may be able to earn several hundreds of dollars a month by renting your garage to tenants who need to park their car, store possessions or work in the space. In general, you should not consider renting out a garage for habitation unless you convert it into residential living space and obtain the proper permits and permission from local government.
Follow Local Laws ad Community Rules
Whether you are renting your garage out as a workshop, art studio, storage or parking space, make sure that using it for business, or income-producing purposes, is legal. Violating local zoning laws can result in legal problems, actually costing you money. Instead of making money, you may end up paying penalties. Also, most condominium, townhouse and planned-unit developments, which are subject to homeowners associations, prohibit using garages as rentals and for purposes other than parking a homeowner's vehicle.
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Clean and Safeguard Your Garage
Prepare your garage for its intended purpose. Arranging your garage can maximize both its use and rental income. This can be relatively inexpensive if you only need to paint, clean and organize, however, it can be costly and time-consuming if your garage is neglected, unsafe or filled to the brim with your possessions. Move personal belongings to another storage area, clean thoroughly, and ensure that all electric, plumbing, mechanical and structural components in the garage work properly and meet health and safety codes. Also, consider installing smoke detectors and other safety features to protect the tenant's health and property. Your local zoning authority can help you determine the mandatory safety equipment you need.
Advertising the Space
Advertise your garage in the local paper or on websites that match non-residential tenants with garage owners, such as ParkatmyHouse.com, or JustPark.com. The websites allow prospective renters to search an area for space and get in touch immediately. Some websites offer apps for mobile devices that make finding garages for rent easier. In your advertisement, include the garage square footage and the monthly rental rate. Determine your rental rate by finding similar garage rentals in your neighborhood or city. Schedule viewings after you have prepared your garage for use, to make the best impression.
Contract and Insurance Considerations
Include the terms of the rental agreement, such as the rent due date, terms and delivery method. Depending on its use, the rental term may vary greatly, from weeks to years. For example, a renter that needs storage space during a relocation may need a weekly or month-to-month rental, whereas a vintage car owner may want a long-term multiple-year lease to secure the space. Consult with your homeowners insurance provider to determine the appropriate coverage, as using your garage for income purposes might require an insurance rider, or additional coverage.