If you want to rent out your garage, congratulatons! Having a garage for rent is a severely easy way to bring in some extra monthly income. Just sit back and let people pay you to store their stuff in your garage. Not a bad gig. That is, once you have a renter.
If you have a garage that you think would make a good rental but don’t know where to start, follow this step-by-step guide to find out how you can rent out your garage to get the most money for it in the shortest amount of time.
Step 1- Make Sure You Can Legally Rent It
If you own the property, then no problem, move on to the next step. If you don’t own it, then you will need to find out if it’s within your legal rights to sublet it. Don’t skip this step. Seriously, lawsuits are no fun, especially if you’re on the receiving end of one.
Dig out your lease and read through all the fine print. When you first signed your lease, there was probably a section in there about whether or not you can sublet. If there is a no subletting clause, then sorry, you won’t be able to rent out your garage. Do not try to sneak one past your landlord, because it will not end well for you. If they find out, and they will, not only will they kick your renter out (which will be annoying for them, and they will turn around and leave you a scathing review, making your chances of securing a future renter slim) they will probably tear up your lease as well (which will be annoying for you because you’ll have to find somewhere else to live. But hey, we told you not to do it.) You might be able to talk to your landlord about renegotiating the clause, but generally if they went to the trouble of specifically stating in a legal contract that subletting is not allowed, then it’s most likely a done deal.
If there is no mention of subletting in the lease you signed, you still will need to get written permission from your landlord to rent out your garage. The reasons for this is that your landlord may want to screen renters. It’s a reasonable request. Let them have it.
The bottom line is this: If you have a landlord, talk to them about your plans for subletting. If they give you permission to rent out your garage, get it in writing.
Are you part of an HOA? Then you’re going to want to consult the handbook to make sure you won’t be in violation of any rules. If you have homeowner’s insurance, give them a call and find out about what can happen if the worst happens (fire, theft, property damage, etc.) This is step one, and something you really don’t want to cut corners on.
After you’ve gone through all the legal red tape– that is you’ve received written permision from your landlord, and you’re in compliance with your HOA and insurance company, now it’s time to make your garage pretty for your new renter. Roll up those sleeves and get your mop and bucket out.
Step 2 – Clean It
Set aside a weekend and get the place spruced up. Everything that isn’t nailed down needs to go. This definitely includes dust, cobwebs, and anything broken or unsightly. A nice looking, clean, and organized garage with everything working properly means more money for you, so be thorough here. This can be a one day job or a one month job depending on how much work needs to be done. If the thought of cleaning out your garage seems overwhelming, enlist some help, or click here for some pointers on how to clean out your garage quickly.
Sweep it up, hose it down, and address repairs. Knock down those tetnus inciting nails sticking out of the walls. Fill in any holes or patches in the walls or floor. Make sure the ceiling is in good condition and that the roof does not leak. Is your garage susceptible to flooding or water damage? Better take care of it now before a peeved-off renter wants answers because their prized comic book collection got destroyed by a particulary rainy winter.
While you’re cleaning, take notes about everything awesome your garage has to offer. These are your ammenities. The more amenities you have the more money you can charge to rent out your garage. How big is the space? Does it have built-in shelves? Electricity? Heat? Is it in a sought after part of town? How well does it lock up? These are things that renters will want to know and they will pay more for good stuff, so keep your eyes open to what you can offer them that someone else can’t.
Step 3 – Take Pictures
Since a renter’s first impression is going to be through the website, good pictures are a must. The more the better. You don’t need to be a professonal photographer or have expensive equipment to take great pictures (but if you have it, then by all means go for it). Your cell phone is just fine, just go easy on the filters and special effects. Make sure that you showcase everything positive, without stretching the truth. Is it large enough to store an RV? Take a picture of those gorgeous high ceilings. Does it have lots of cupboards for tools or wall hooks for bikes? Get a picture so a renter can envision putting their tools away and hanging their bikes securely on the walls. Really, don’t skimp here. Embrace your inner photographer and work it, work it.
Step 4 – Write an Awesome Description
Now’s the time to consult the notes and pictures you took. It’s time to write the description of your garage. This is your sale-pitch so don’t downplay the importance of a great description. Don’t just say “10 x 20 garage for rent.” Yawn. No one is going to click on that. Imagine the type of renter you want and write directly to that person. “Secure, dry garage to store your 4-wheelers and all your camping equipment.” See the difference? Which one would you rather look at?
Don’t go overboard though. You’re not writing a pulitzer here. Aim for 50 to 100 words for your description. Keep it simple and concise, but with enough descriptive words to paint an enticing picture for your would-be renter. A good pre-writing exercise would be to browse through google or Hopperstock’s garages for rent or spaces for rent and see how people who have been doing this for awhile do it. It becomes clear right away which descriptions are hooking renters and which are being passed over.
Step 5- Determine Your Rent
How much money can you get to rent out your garage every month? That’s really the question you want answered isn’t it? How much money will you make? The average Hopperstock garage host will make between $1,000 to $5,000 per year. To get on the higher end of that spectrum will depend on several things such as location and those desirable amenitites we talked about. The most bare-bones garage or rental space on the outskirts of town can earn anywhere from $50 to $100 a month. A deluxe 4-car heated garage in the heart of Cleveland, obviously, will bring in much more. Most garages will fall somewhere in the middle. If you follow the steps outlined in this guide, you will get a fair price to rent out your garage that will make both you and your renter happy.
If you’ve gone through these steps you already have the specifics you need to get started: dimensions, amenities, geographic location, pictures, and description. Once you register as a host, the website will walk you through the listing process, calculate a ballpark figure for what you can reasonable get for your garage, and show you how to get paid (you will need to have your bank information handy). Advertising is important, but you won’t have to worry about advertising to rent out your garage because Hopperstock will do it for you by listing it on its database of eligible properties. Renters are ready. Are you?