I’ve heard of a few people doing this, but I’m surprised more don’t. (Update: check out this genius!)
Next time you’re looking for an apartment get a 2 bedroom instead of a 1 bedroom, or a 3 bedroom instead of a 2, and buy a cheap bed for the extra bedroom. I’ve purchased a new queen sized mattress/box spring for $200 delivered before.
Also, be sure you’re renting in a desirable area of town. Meaning an area where it would be convenient for people who are traveling to your city to stay. Near public transportation is always a good bet.
Next step is simple: Rent out your extra bedroom on AirBNB. Price your room for just under the going rate (if average is $100 make yours $90) so it gets rented quickly and often. I would even start by renting it for half the going rate at first to build up reviews, which are important to get future rentals.
This is better than having a full-time roommate for 2 reasons:
- You probably only have to rent out the room for 10 days per month to make enough to cover more than half the rent. (Even though a 2bed isn’t ever twice as expensive as a 1bed apartment anyway.) Renting for 15-20 days will likely cover the whole month’s rent. That means you get the place to yourself for a significant portion of every month. If you’re an introvert like me this is killer.
- You get to meet new people from around the world. When you can’t travel at least you can live vicariously.