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  • FIRST POST
    • jonnygee2
    • By jonnygee2 9th Jul 18, 8:12 PM
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    jonnygee2
    Lodger agreement reasonable?
    • #1
    • 9th Jul 18, 8:12 PM
    Lodger agreement reasonable? 9th Jul 18 at 8:12 PM
    So, after recently buying a house, a friend of a distant friend has asked to rent our room out.

    We'd been considering this anyway. It's not a huge flat, but it's big enough to support a third person, with a separate kitchen/diner and a separate shower / toilet, and a relatively large second bedroom. And suddenly this opportunity has come along. I've looked into the legals, and it all looks pretty simple.

    Thinking things through, I think it'd work for us but I want to give him the following 'rules'. Are these reasonable? In practice we'd be flexible, but I'm not sure if it's normal to be so prescriptive or not? The thing is that we want to preserve our space to some extent, but I'm not sure if that's a bit greedy given we'd be earning rent (although I've tried to make sure the room rate reflects this to some degree).

    - Bathroom, no more than 20 minutes between 7 - 9am on weekdays.

    - No showers 11pm - 7am Sun - Thurs (bathroom is next to our bedroom and a bit noisy)

    - Kitchen - cook / eat before 7.30 pm. Can use our pans/crockery but must be cleaned and dried before this (we normally cook from about then onwards). Must only use own food (inc sauces, condiments, cooking oil etc)

    - Laundry - daytime only (9 - 6)

    - Living room - use until 9pm daily

    - No noise (music in room etc) after 11pm Sunday - Thurs

    - Guests - no guests allowed in living room or kitchen. No more than two guests at a time. Ask us before letting anyone stay overnight and not more than twice / week.

    - Cleaning - must clean surfaces etc after use. No other cleaning necessary (cleaner comes weekly anyway).

    What do you think? Have I missed anything important? And is this all reasonable or too much?
Page 2
    • kerri gt
    • By kerri gt 9th Jul 18, 9:45 PM
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    kerri gt
    Hmmmm. They can take a dump anytime! It's just the shower that's 'restricted'. For the laundry - he is a student, he'd be home most days (goes to uni three days a week). I suppose it wouldn't be a big pain in the evening, apart from that the extremely noisy machine is in the kitchen where everyone also has to eat dinner.

    Based on the (somewhat extreme!) reaction I am having a bit of a rethink though. I thought maybe lowering the rent a bit (I asked for about 50% of what the market rent would probably be) and having a few restrictions would be a fair compromise, but maybe I should just not bother at all!
    Originally posted by jonnygee2
    you've hit the nail on the head there, this would be the lodgers home too - and they would be financially contributing in way of their rent. Whilst ground rules do avoid future disagreements and angst further down the line, flipping things round - how would you feel with such a list being issued to you?

    Would it really be such a big deal for the lodger to be heating dinner in the oven at 7.45 while you're cooking? They don't need to be in the kitchen watching the oven GBBO style.

    Similarly with washing, you could ask and say 'if possible could you do your washing during the day if it's just you in / we're out as the machine makes a bit of a racket'.

    I do understand the 'additional guests' rule as you don't want to risk essentially ending up with two lodgers but you need to accept that they may not wish to sit in lodgers bedroom like a couple of teenagers and saying 'guests are not allowed in the lounge' seems OTT.

    Having the benefit of the lodgers income means you may have to compromise on your ideal living situation (ie lounge to yourself 9pm onwards every night). If you don't feel you can do that then I'd strongly suggest having a lodger may not be for you.
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    • jonnygee2
    • By jonnygee2 9th Jul 18, 9:51 PM
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    jonnygee2
    Whilst ground rules do avoid future disagreements and angst further down the line, flipping things round - how would you feel with such a list being issued to you?
    In fairness I lived in a place in Ealing with much worse rules. I was allowed about 30 minutes in the kitchen a day! But that doesn't really make it fair, and I hated that place (also the landlady was a ****** ) - taken in desperate times though.
    • Red-Squirrel
    • By Red-Squirrel 9th Jul 18, 10:30 PM
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    Red-Squirrel
    If you are going to make it work, you need to change your mindset from you setting rules and deciding what is a reasonable time to spend in the bathroom, to everybody in the flat having to compromise.

    I'm generally in and out of the bathroom in 10 minutes, but sometimes I need longer, for a wide variety of reasons. I wouldn't move in somewhere I thought I might get banging on the door and a demand for an explanation if I went over my slot by 1 minute!

    This is mostly stuff to have a conversation about, not to set rigid rules about. You have the balance of power as you can ask a lodger to leave with barely any notice, so if it doesn't work out you don't have a great deal to lose.
    • takman
    • By takman 9th Jul 18, 10:44 PM
    • 3,647 Posts
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    takman
    Hmmmm. They can take a dump anytime! It's just the shower that's 'restricted'. For the laundry - he is a student, he'd be home most days (goes to uni three days a week). I suppose it wouldn't be a big pain in the evening, apart from that the extremely noisy machine is in the kitchen where everyone also has to eat dinner.

    Based on the (somewhat extreme!) reaction I am having a bit of a rethink though. I thought maybe lowering the rent a bit (I asked for about 50% of what the market rent would probably be) and having a few restrictions would be a fair compromise, but maybe I should just not bother at all!
    Originally posted by jonnygee2
    If you decide to go ahead the first thing you should spend the money on is a quiet washing machine, there is no need for it to be extremely noisy.
    • Kynthia
    • By Kynthia 9th Jul 18, 11:13 PM
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    Kynthia
    I usually say that you should list everything so that the lodger knows what's expected of them from the start to prevent bad feeling, and that the conditions can be relaxed if things are going well. However your list feels very rigid and excessive.

    Think about what is really important to you and get rid of some of the less important restrictions. If something is very important then rephrase if is possible so that you give the lodger flexibility while still meeting your needs. For example instead of saying they can't use the kitchen after 7.30pm, say you will be using it between 7.30pm and 8.30pm so they won't be able to do much more than heat something during that time due to space restrictions.

    Some things are a conversation about consideration when living with others. So just tell them that you'd prefer the washing machine to be used only in the daytime as it's noisy, but you understand there may be the occassional time that's not possible and you're fine with that. Same with the shower, just say it's right by your bedroom so you'd prefer they avoided times you're likely to be sleeping.

    I think saying no guests in the lounge is over the top. Being unable to have a cup of tea with a friend in the lounge would really make me feel like I was an imposition in someone else's home. It would make me feel I couldn't ever have anyone pop in which would mean I didn't feel like it was my home.

    If the 9pm rule on the lounge is that important to you then leave it in.
    We're all different and they may be prepared to live with it. However is there room for a comfy chair in their room as that's the only way is agree? I wouldn't want to sit on my bed for hours every evening.
    Don't listen to me, I'm no expert!
    • deannatrois
    • By deannatrois 9th Jul 18, 11:41 PM
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    deannatrois
    I agree with the above statement. If the washing machine is that noisy, it might need bearings looking at or something else. My washing machine just hums even when spinning at 1400 rpm. You can only hear it in the kitchen.

    I suspect you are trying to make it easier rather than prescriptive and restricting but to be honest, it is a bit like a prison. There are too many rules and no acknowledgement that when you share your home there has to be give and take. I am afraid, if you are sharing facilities, you are sharing your home.

    There are advantages to having a lodger, if you get on, there is companionship, someone to help with cleaning, you might be able to have someone in when you can't be to collect parcels etc. But there are always going to be downsides too.., lack of privacy, noise at times you don't want it etc. Just part of having a lodger.

    If you can't bear any of the downsides (and it does look as if this may be the case), the extra rent you might get isn't worth it.
    • t0rt0ise
    • By t0rt0ise 10th Jul 18, 8:15 AM
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    t0rt0ise
    If you're going to have such rules then at least send them to the prospective lodger beforehand so that they can decide not to come. Don't just give them to them on arrival.

    You may find that if they are not allowed in thekitchen in the evening that they will keep some food in their room, stuff to make an evening sandwich etc and that may not be ideal.
    • Rosemary7391
    • By Rosemary7391 10th Jul 18, 8:36 AM
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    Rosemary7391
    I think your combination of shower rules means that I wouldn't be able to wash my hair of a morning (I have very long hair). Mostly though these are things to talk about - for example, you'd probably not fuss much if someone went into the shower at 645am so they could have a half hour without making you late? Or if you're done by 745am why do you care how long they take afterwards? But writing it all out like that looks unreasonable even if it'll end up that way in practice.



    Laundry - I *never* do laundry between 9 and 6 ! My ideal is to put it on first thing so I can be hanging it out well before 9. Whenever we're not having a heatwave that means it might dry before dark.


    Kitchen - I assume you wouldn't mind them making their sandwiches etc for the next day after you're done with dinner? And can they not have friends over for dinner? Might be better to make that "guests with prior agreement" rather than they can't go into the kitchen.
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    • saajan_12
    • By saajan_12 10th Jul 18, 9:07 AM
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    saajan_12
    House rules are important to set out expectations of severe no-no's, not design your ideal way of living. Both sides have to give in a little - your rules suggest you're not willing to adapt at all.

    - Bathroom, no more than 20 minutes between 7 - 9am on weekdays. - too restrictive, I'd shorten this to when you actually use it e.g. shower avail to you for 20 min between 7-9am.

    - No showers 11pm - 7am Sun - Thurs (bathroom is next to our bedroom and a bit noisy) - There can be emergencies,
    or the odd late night / early morning, so this shouldn't be an absolute rule. Combine it with the "no unnecessary noise including showers unless unavoidable".


    - Kitchen - cook / eat before 7.30 pm. Can use our pans/crockery but must be cleaned and dried before this (we normally cook from about then onwards). Must only use own food (inc sauces, condiments, cooking oil etc) - pan & food usage rules are fine,
    but you can't give such a short slot for making food - if they miss it they have to takeaway and eat in their bedroom or go hungry?!
    I'd change this to "allow you use of the kitchen 7:30-8:30pm". Some days you may need to eat a bit later, which is fair.


    - Laundry - daytime only (9 - 6)- too restrictive, this goes with no noise 11pm - 7am. Outside this its reasonable to be able to do the laundry when convenient. If the machine is too loud for comfort while getting ready / eating / evening, then the machine is too loud.

    - Living room - use until 9pm daily - too restrictive,
    they are sharing the house not just accessing a room. You can say "reasonably share living room, no guests after 9pm so it doesn't crowd you out, but them quietly working on a laptop outside their room is reasonable.


    - No noise (music in room etc) after 11pm Sunday - Thurs - okay, specify this is until 7am say.

    - Guests - no guests allowed in living room or kitchen. No more than two guests at a time. - too restrictive - they are sharing the home and having a friend over for a coffee / dinner is part of that. What if their parents & sister want to visit? You can say let you know before a larger gathering of 2+ guests so you can plan, but saying no altogether is too restrictive.
    Ask us before letting anyone stay overnight and not more than twice / week.- fair enough

    - Cleaning - must clean surfaces etc after use. No other cleaning necessary (cleaner comes weekly anyway).- fair enough
    Originally posted by jonnygee2
    I would reduce to the below, else I think you need to reconsider living with a lodger.

    - Showeroom: share use, you'll need 20 min between 7-9am weekdays

    - Kitchen: share use, you'll need 7:30-8:30pm. Can use our pans/crockery but must be cleaned and dried before this (we normally cook from about then onwards). Must only use own food (inc sauces, condiments, cooking oil etc)

    - Living room - no guests after 9pm daily

    - No noise (music in room, washing machine, long showers etc) after 11pm - 7am Sunday - Thurs

    - Guests - Notify us if more than 2 guests at a time or anyone overnight, Overnight guests no more than twice / week.

    - Cleaning - must clean surfaces etc after use. No other cleaning necessary (cleaner comes weekly anyway).
    • tlc678910
    • By tlc678910 10th Jul 18, 10:47 AM
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    tlc678910
    The rules I hate the most are no guests in communal living areas and get out the living room by 9.
    Are you and your partner very solitary yourselves and just don't like people round full stop? Why on earth would someone live somewhere they can't have friends over? (Aside from as someone else mentioned sitting in their room like a teenager). How embarrassing to tell a friend your not allowed in the living room!

    If you have all been watching a film on the tv and it is half way through at 9 would they need special permission to watch the end? That is ridiculous.

    Try replacing the word lodger with "housemate" in your mind. Get over the power trip of "lodger" - can you live alongside someone else? (rather than lording it over them?). Do you want a housemate? - If you don't then don't bother and find other ways to boost your finances.

    If you give further thought to having a lodger and think you might be able to compromise you might be better with someone who works full time so they also need to rest for work and probably won't socialise late in the week. Someone who want to stay close to work Mon-Fri and go to their home for the weekend would be even better for your needs as you can have your alone time at the weekend.

    Tlc
    • Icarus01
    • By Icarus01 10th Jul 18, 11:09 AM
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    Icarus01
    Seems like you're not cut out for a lodger. You can't expect them to restrict their lifestyle to your (unfair) rules AND pay you for the privilege.


    You need to work around them as much as you expect them to work around you. After all, it's their home too.
    • Blondetotty
    • By Blondetotty 10th Jul 18, 3:49 PM
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    Blondetotty
    Tbh I think I'd rather live in a cardboard box than suffer under those kind of rules with a Dictator style landlord.

    If I gave my lodger/housemate those kind of rules I'd hope she would !!!!!slap the sense back into me before chucking them in the bin and then having a good laugh with me over a bottle of wine in our shared lounge after 9pm before putting on a load of laundry and having a 30 minute long shower while playing music...

    Instead of crazy strict !!! rules we do that kind of weird thing called "talking". She knows when I need the bathroom/shower for my regular job and I understand she's a student and part time night worker so gets in at funny hours and may want to have a shower at 4am. We oddly do that thing called "compromise" on occasion. Funnily enough it works out quite well.
    • Blondetotty
    • By Blondetotty 10th Jul 18, 3:50 PM
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    Blondetotty
    Guess mse didn't like my "swear" words.
    • Carrot007
    • By Carrot007 10th Jul 18, 4:01 PM
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    Carrot007
    If you're going to have such rules then at least send them to the prospective lodger beforehand so that they can decide not to come. Don't just give them to them on arrival.
    Originally posted by t0rt0ise

    Though do be aware a normal operson would think you are being over the top and that they could push your overbearing rules a lot.
    • need an answer
    • By need an answer 10th Jul 18, 4:28 PM
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    need an answer
    How much rent do you propose to charge for this totalitarian regime ???

    or is the sweetner that you will be paying them.....


    Your proposing to have an adult I assume,someone who has been bought up in a boarding school dorm.

    good luck with getting those rules past anyone.



    One question that always comes up with lodgers though is who supplies the toilet roll?

    no mention in your list so at least that's a partial result for the incoming lodger.
    Last edited by need an answer; 10-07-2018 at 4:33 PM.
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    • gettingtheresometime
    • By gettingtheresometime 10th Jul 18, 4:44 PM
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    gettingtheresometime
    Would be like living with your parents with those rules
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    • lookstraightahead
    • By lookstraightahead 10th Jul 18, 4:48 PM
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    lookstraightahead
    My 86 year old mother in law had a 24 year old lodger. They worked out what worked for both of them, equally, as equal people, and it worked perfectly well.

    Do you really think your
    Lodger would have any quality of life?
    • lookstraightahead
    • By lookstraightahead 10th Jul 18, 4:50 PM
    • 400 Posts
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    lookstraightahead
    Oh and if you want someone with a job, most of these times won't fit. I regularly do long hours and have a shower before bed, often after 11.
    • diggingdude
    • By diggingdude 10th Jul 18, 5:37 PM
    • 385 Posts
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    diggingdude
    Fair enough, send the rules through to person with cost of rent and let them decide whether to accept. I wouldn't but they might. Be warned though, students (as I have been several times) will agree to many things then say f*** you when you try to impose a prison lifestyle on them
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    • getmore4less
    • By getmore4less 10th Jul 18, 6:48 PM
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    getmore4less
    Only 20 mins between 7-9 in the shower room, why do you need the other 1:40 if 20 mins is enough for anyone?

    Something that suggest that some flexibility/agreement on the morning schedule should suffice.
    Same for coming home after work and wanting a quicky(shower) before going out a bit of warning/planning to avoid conflict is all that is needed
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