Generating passive income streams without any capital to invest can be a challenge, but renting spare storage space is a realistic and practical option.
One of the better options we’ve encountered is Neighbor.com. This platform describes itself as “the Airbnb of storage” which is an interesting concept.
If you decide to work with Neighbor.com, you’ll rent unused space in and/or around your home (basement, attic, bedroom, garage, shed, etc.) to people that need secure storage. As the owner, you get to set the monthly rental payment charge and the platform handles the rest.
In this article, we will take a closer look at Neighbor.com, explain why it’s a great side hustle, the potential for income, and how to get started.
Let’s take a look at six of the main reasons why storage rental is a good side hustle. They are:
- True Passive Income: Many passive income opportunities actually require a significant amount of time and effort to work. But, aside from clearing the storage space and setting up a Neighbor.com account, this is a passive way to make extra cash.
- It’s Easy to Start: Once you’ve set up your account you’ll start to earn money as soon as you get a renter.
- Recurring Monthly Income: Renting storage is a recurring income each and every month that the space is rented.
- Saving Time: Many people don’t have sufficient time to get a second job or run a profitable side hustle, but renting storage space doesn’t take long.
- Making Use of Extra Space: Many people have empty space or areas filled with clutter that could be turned into sources of income.
- Helping Others: There may be people in your community that need rental space urgently and this is a great way to help out and make money at the same time.
The Neighbor.com Basics
Neighbor.com is a relatively new company. It was started by three friends, Preston Alder, Colton Gardner, and Joseph Woodbury back in 2017. The nucleus of the idea came to Preston Alder when he struggled to locate storage space during a summer internship. This spurred him into action in an attempt to find self-storage solutions that didn’t fit into the typical industry model.
This led to the creation of an app that acts as the marketplace for people with space and those that want to make use of it. The growth of Neighbor.com has been rapid. The company now operates in all 50 states and Washington D.C. Over the years, the storage options have grown to include car, RV, and even boat storage.
The company recently closed $10 million Series A funding by Andreessen Horowitz and $53 million Series B funding which was led by Fifth Wall. The company moniker “Neighbor” was chosen to reflect the local community’s needs for reliable storage. After all, it’s more convenient and environmentally friendly to store things nearby, where you have easy access to them.
When you work with Neighbor.com, you can rent out your attic, garage, basement, closet, bedroom, shed, or just about any other space you can imagine. The company doesn’t want to limit your thinking to residential rental spaces only and you can think big if you have space that you’re not using.
One of the best things about Neighbor.com is that there’s no fee to make a listing on the app. Instead, there’s a payment processing fee that’s taken for every storage reservation spot. This means that Neighbor doesn’t take any money unless you’re actually making money from your rental. Aside from this, there are four main reasons why you may want to list your storage spaces with Neighbor. They are:
- The Earning Potential is High: The amount that you could earn will depend on your available space and the demand for that space in your area. It’s hard to make an accurate assessment because everyone has a unique situation. But, to put things into perspective you could expect to earn $100 up to $600 per month, if you rent out a garage.
- $1 Million Coverage: As a Neighbor.com host, you’re automatically insured against personal liability and other problems that could arise from the rental.
- Getting Paid: When you work with Neighbor, you get paid via direct payment to your bank account or debit card at the end of each month. There’s no need to chase the renter for the rent. If the rent is not paid, Neighbor will cover the rental payment.
- Ability to Screen Renters: When someone wants to rent your space, you have 48 hours to screen them, which should give you extra peace of mind.
Neighbor makes it easy to earn extra cash by renting out storage space in your basement, attic, garage, or even a shed. Make extra money each month without needing to spend time on a side hustle.
- Earn thousands of dollars per year
- Very little time or effort required
- Neighbor markets your space to people in your local area
- Set your own rates
- Neighbor handles all the payments for you
Neighbor.com makes a profit by charging fees to the renter and the host. The company charges the host $0.30 for each reservation and a 4.9% processing fee. The renter is charged a set service fee which is confirmed when they book the storage space.
The amount of income you could make will depend on a number of factors, including location, availability, other storage options in the area, the cost of storage, and more.
But, there are a few ballpark figures that may help you to investigate your earning potential. They are:
- An Empty Shed: $50 up to $200 per month.
- An Empty Garage: $100 up to $600 per month.
As we mentioned earlier, the host sets the price, and to ensure that you’re competitive it’s advisable to check the going rates for your area. When you publish your listing with Neighbor, you’ll find renters, but if you want to maximize your earnings and speed up the process, there are seven steps that may help. They are:
- Step 1: Share your storage space listing on your social media accounts.
- Step 2: Hang flyers on local bulletin boards, at colleges, and in neighborhood stores.
- Step 3: Make sure to ask friends, family, and work colleagues if they know anyone looking for storage in the area.
- Step 4: Add a personal profile photo to your Neighbor.com listing to demonstrate that a real person is listing the space for rent.
- Step 5: Add some personal information to show that you’re likable and trustworthy, but don’t overdo it.
- Step 6: Include at least a paragraph-long description of the space you’re renting.
- Step 7: Clean and clear the space and add lots of photos for the listing.
These steps will boost your Neighbor.com rankings, raise local interest and demonstrate that you’re a good person to do business with.
Neighbor is a platform with a local focus to help hosts and renters find each other. It’s a convenient and easy-to-use alternative to traditional storage spaces. The possibilities are endless and you don’t need a lot of free space to get started.
As an example: a student could rent the corner of a shed or garage to store a bike or a few boxes for $50 per month. That same college student could expect to pay $65 or more for a small 5×5 storage unit that may be located across town.
Signing up with Neighbor.com is simple. Link your bank account to receive payments and you’re good to go. Neighbor collects the rent and makes the deposit to your bank account or debit card. As stated earlier, there’s a 4.9% process fee, but the advantages and rental protection make this a bargain.
As a host, you receive reservation requests via the app and this indicates that the space has already been paid for. The billing takes place automatically on the monthly renewal date and your rental payments are guaranteed by Neighbor.
Let’s take a look at how this would work in a hypothetical rental situation as follows:
The host lists a storage shed that they don’t use for $85 per month and some interest is generated from a potential renter in the area. The host is happy and they approve the renter within 48 hours. The host then receives $80.54 to their bank account which can be broken down as follows: $85 – $4.16 (the 4.9% processing fee) – $0.30 (the transaction fee) = $80.54.
If both parties are happy and the renter keeps the shed for the entire year, the host will make $966.48 ($80.54 x 12) in passive income. The only real work that the host has to perform is ensuring that the renter has easy access to the shed during the rental agreement hours.
Renting out your spare space with Neighbor is simple. Visit the website at Neighbor.com and open an account. Then there are three simple steps to follow. They are:
List your unused attic, basement, garage, shed, or other storage space on Neighbor. Set a fair price that’s in line with other storage providers located in your area.
A prospective renter will respond to the listing. This is the time to ask questions about what the person wants to store. You may want to meet the person and check out the potential storage items before you make a final decision. Any communications are made via the Neighbor app and you don’t need to share personal information.
Neighbor collects the rental fee, they deduct the fees and disburse the payment to your debit card or specified bank account.
Final Thoughts on Renting Out Your Storage Space
While there are plenty of potential side hustles out there, most of them require a significant time commitment. If you’re looking for a way to make some extra money with out putting in a lot of time, a rental side hustle is one of the best options out there, and Neighbor makes it easy.
As you can see, learning how to make extra money by renting out storage space is simple and easy. If you have space that you’re not using, consider using Neighbor.com.