So…you’re thinking of renting out your basement? You might want to read this first!

It seems that everyone is renting out his or her basements these days, and why not, the money to be made is attractive to say the least Ð the tenant might be as well! LetÕs face itÉif your mortgage payment is $1200.00 per month and you can rent out that basement that you hardly ever use for $1000.00 per monthÉit sure makes things pretty easy on the old bank account. Just think about it for a secondÉa $200.00 mortgage payment Ð ahhhhh, that feels nice! Snap in to reality and realize you still have to pay Property Taxes, Utilities, maybe Condo FeesÉoh, and if you have kids Ð you gotta feed them too! Yeah Ð who knew? Back to the point I am trying to makeÉitÕs great to have a tenant in the basementÉbut itÕs probably a good idea for you to know a few things before you draft up that rental agreementÉyou could be in for more than you bargained for. Did you know that just because you have a separate entrance, a kitchenette, a bathroom and a bedroom in your basementÉit doesnÕt necessarily mean you can rent it out Ð legally that is? Aside from the obvious zoning issuesÉthink about the potential insurance nightmare you could be up against if there was ever a fire! While it might be fun to have a tenant Ð make sure your suite is conforming to your municipality. For instance, in Regina Ð a legal suite must have Fire Guards in place, the unit must have itÕs own heat source and controls, a parking stall must be available, etc. And perhaps the biggest drain on you as a poor landlordÉif you were ever forced to put in all of these items Ð it could be an enormous expense. The shocker is that once you enter an agreement for $$$ from a tenant Ð the statutes of any laws regarding Tenancy immediately bind you. So, you may be forced to put in such amenities to please the tenantÉeven after the fact. Protect yourself. And to make matters less fun Ð you canÕt even use that income as real income more often than not when it comes to lenders these days. So reallyÉis it worth it?? IÕm Jason from FOCUS Mortgage Solutions Ð thanks for reading! NowÉgo feed your kids!