How To Live Rent Free in London (Really!)

By Zoe Craig Last edited 33 months ago
How To Live Rent Free in London (Really!)
Coloured houses in Camden. Photo by Fred via the Londonist Flickr pool

With the high costs of renting in London, you might be tempted to make some money renting out space in your flat on Airbnb.

A new report shows you how much you can earn from rooms in different boroughs of London, and where you can make the most profit.

The survey, from movehub, suggests that some Londoners are using Airbnb as a significant source of secondary income.

Apparently, some people are paying off their rent entirely through putting up strangers for the night; and even kipping on the floor at friends' houses to free up their home for guests.

(Obviously, you'll need to check the exact terms of your rental agreement before setting yourself up on Airbnb. We're not advocating any illegal subletting here, thankyouverymuch.)

So: taking private rental statistics across London from, and cross referencing with data from Inside Airbnb, here are the results.

Where are Airbnb prices highest in London?

The most popular tourist destinations prove to be the biggest earners: Kensington & Chelsea comes out on top, with an average income of £2,204 if you were to rent out your room for a month.

Westminster and Richmond also attracted visitors willing to pay more: £2,058.22 for Westminster and £1,934.10 in Richmond, for a room for a month.

But, the high costs of rent in these boroughs mean Airbnbing Londoners would make less of a profit than elsewhere.

The average rent of £802 for a room in Kensington and £931 in Westminster meaning subletters would make around £1,200 profit per month from Airbnb.

What's the best London borough for Airbnb profit?

The best place to be in London if you want to make a profit from Airbnb, is Greenwich.

The winning combination of lower rents and tourist attractions means Londoners in the capital's south easterly royal borough can earn £1,726 renting out an Airbnb room for a month, giving a profit of £1,276.

In fact, you'd only need to rent out a room for eight nights a month to cover your rent.

You could potentially cover your rent with 10 nights' Airbnb rental in Richmond and Redbridge too.

The average number of nights per month you'd have to be renting out a room to cover your rent varies across the London boroughs: it's around 12 nights in Kensington, Wandsworth, Hounslow, Merton, Kingston, Ealing, Hillingdon and Bromley, for instance.

At the other end of the spectrum are Haringey, Sutton and Tower Hamlets, where you'd need to rent your room out for 15 nights or more per month to cover your rental costs.

Last Updated 05 August 2016