A lodger rents a room in a home, usually living with the landlord and sharing facilities and bills.

How to become a lodger

Search online for rooms for lodgers. Easyroommate and Spareroom list rooms for lodgers. Landlords sometimes advertise for rooms for lodgers in shop windows.

A landlord does not have to provide a lodger with a contract but it is a good idea to have a written agreement in place.

In some parts of the West Midlands, you may be asked to prove that you have the right to live in the UK and the right to rent.

Read more about right to rent immigration checks.

Deposits for lodgers

You might be asked to pay a deposit to cover any damage or missed rent. This should be returned to you when you leave.

The landlord does not have to protect a lodger's deposit in the same way as private rented tenant's deposit is protected. Ask your landlord for information about situations where deductions could be made from your deposit.

Find out more about getting back your deposit when you're a lodger.

Make an inventory listing the contents and condition of your room and any rooms you share with your landlord. Get the landlord to sign the inventory to avoid disputes when you leave.

When you are asked to leave

Landlords only need to give reasonable notice when they want lodgers to leave. 

In legal terms, lodgers are excluded occupiers. Find out more about the notice your landlord must give you as an excluded occupier.

Living with a landlord

Respect the privacy, property and space of the people you share with.

Agree on house rules with your landlord before you move in.

If possible, set up a standing order to pay rent. You won't need to carry large amounts of cash and the landlord won't have to remind you to pay rent.

Ask for a receipt if you pay your rent in cash.

If your landlord's home is repossessed

You might have to leave if the property is repossessed.

Find out more about repossession by the landlord's lender.

Get advice if you are in this situation. Use Shelter's directory to find a local advice centre or call Shelter's helpline.


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