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2 min read

Spring Cleaning in Winter: For Cash and Company

Now is the perfect time to tackle that spare room or guest room that has become the receptacle of old wrapping paper, craft projects or “re-gifting” items—and turn it into a source of income. Cleaning your spare room is the first step toward turning your home into a source of income. Renting out that room can help you earn an extra $750 or so each month, and you might even develop a friendship with your new housemate. 


But taking the first step can be overwhelming, especially if that spare room is more than a little cluttered. Here are a few suggestions to help you get started.



Tips for Tackling the Dreaded Spare Room

It can be easy to keep putting off this project, but the rewards of completing it are hard to pass up. Here are some quick ideas to help you take the plunge:

  1. Get ready. Set aside a day for the project and mark it on the calendar. Grab some extra boxes from the local grocery or liquor store and some trash bags.

  2. Sort and triage. Start by sorting out what is in front of you. If you haven’t used, worn or thought about an item in a year, it can probably be donated or thrown away. 

  3. Enlist the troops. If you are storing stuff for your adult kids, have them come and pick it up or move it to the garage or attic. 

  4. Make it fun. Crank up some tunes on Pandora or turn on your favorite playlist. Ask a friend to come by and help, even if it's only to bring a cup of coffee or a bottle of wine. 


Most are surprised it doesn’t take nearly as long as they thought, and removing the clutter always makes a room look better! If there is extra energy left over to tackle a light house cleaning, go for it, otherwise leave that for another day.


Plan to leave the main furniture in the room for a new roommate to come in without their own furniture, but be open to moving it out if they have their own stuff. If it is necessary to move it out, often a local neighbor, handyman, adult child or even small local moving service can help break it down, and either store it, or help to donate it.


Viola! You are now ready to get out that smart phone or digital camera and shoot a few pictures of your new rental space.  Be sure to use good light and take photos of the personal spaces your roommate can use, as well as the rest of the house. There is no limit to photos so be generous!




Image credit: K. David Marple on Flickr

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