Giving every dollar a job and passive income from rent… These are two ideas Neighbor mashes together. The message is simple: use what you already have to your advantage. In the case of Neighbor, it’s giving every space of your home a job.
Because as much as compound interests add up over time, wasted and missed opportunities do, too.
Neighbor.com lets you maximize opportunity and passive income. It operates in a space (pun intended) that’s hardly covered — storage space — and this diversification benefit is also good for investors and hosts.
Let’s touch on how the app works, how much you can make from it, and whether or not you should be a host on the new peer-to-peer self-storage marketplace.
Table of Contents
How Does the Neighbor App Work?
In a nutshell, Neighbor is an online community that connects hosts and renters — a peer-to-peer self-storage marketplace. As a host, you benefit from the extra money.
On the other hand, renters benefit from the lower-than-market rent. Everybody wins.
Hosts rent out unused spaces in their homes to earn passive income. More on the types of areas you can rent out in a bit.
For renters, the available spaces on Neighbor usually come cheaper than traditional storage facilities managed by businesses.
For some context, the self-storage industry in the US has an estimated annual revenue of $39.5 billion. Thanks to Neighbor, this is a huge market we can now participate in.
The app is also available in top cities like Los Angeles, New York, and Miami, among many others, so it’s an option I encourage people to explore.
In fact, listings are currently available in 48 states, with plans to go international.
What Can You Rent Out on Neighbor.com?
The company markets itself as “the Airbnb of Storage,” a pretty accurate moniker.
If Airbnb allows you to rent out rooms of all types, Neighbor goes beyond that, letting you rent out all kinds of spaces.
These spaces run the gamut, from small closets to whole garages.
Here is a non-exhaustive list of spaces you can list and rent out on the platform:
- Parking lot
- Shipping container
The freedom to rent out all kinds of spaces is remarkable. It is undoubtedly part of why the site is one of our most-trusted money-making websites that require no upfront costs.
Is the Neighbor App Safe?
While the flexibility Neighbor affords hosts and renters is great, the same openness naturally comes with tradeoffs.
- Is the platform safe?
- What happens if renters damage your property?
- Will hosts keep your things safe?
First off, while Neighbor is indeed a startup, it’s been around long enough, with stable operations, to receive Series B funding from well-known venture capital firms, including Andreessen Horowitz LLC. (Andreessen Horowitz LLC, a16z.com, is a VC with early investments in Skype, Twitter, Facebook, and, unsurprisingly, Airbnb.)
Neighbor has had excellent growth over the last few years, doubling its employee count in 2020.
Next, Neighbor enforces safety controls.
For instance, hosts can choose to accept renters with mutual Facebook friends. Hosts are also protected from liability issues, with protection through the platform’s $1 million host guarantee, among others.
And, although I could list all of the app’s safety features, Neighbor’s help center has a dedicated section on Safety.
The company clearly takes its hosts’ and renters’ well-being seriously, with answers to questions like “Does my renter need to have renters insurance,” “What am I liable for as a host,” and a Renter Property Protection Plan Overview.
How Much Can You Make on Neighbor?
Neighbor charges you, as the host, a 4.9% processing fee and an additional 30 cents for every booking. This rate is slightly higher than what most hosts pay on Airbnb.
But all things considered, this rate isn’t alarming.
Assuming you list your space as-is, then your returns become infinitely high (i.e., your cash-on-cash returns go higher as you decrease your dollar investment).
Even if you do spend a bit for upkeep or rehab, the returns are still incredibly high despite the platform’s fees.
As for exactly how much you can actually make on Neighbor, that’s harder to say. The amount of money you make depends on many factors, including where you live and how much space you rent out.
A rough range would be around $50 per month for a shed, $100 a month for garages, and probably more for specialty spaces like shipping containers or when renters have unique needs and are willing to pay a premium.
And Reddit users show how incomes can vary on Neighbor.com. One user makes $28 a month on a small shed in the backyard. Another host earns $1,000 a month on rare acreage:
“[W]e have some rare acreage just outside the city, decided to post up parking for RV or boats etc. 10×40’ we have enough space for six so far without me clearing anything, just dead pasture for the most part, surrounded by woods but the lot is fenced all around.
Well it took me only 3 weeks to rent all six, charging $220-250 a month, a few we ran extension cords out for battery chargers/fans added another $20 a month to those. Easiest $1,000 a month passive income ever made.”
Create Your First Listing on Neighbor.com
Fortunately, getting started and listing your first space on Neighbor is pretty straightforward.
- Head to Neighbor.com and look for the “Become a host” button. If you haven’t signed up yet, this is at the top right corner of the homepage.
- Next, fill out the details requested to “Create an account.”
- A sequence of questions will be asked on the space you’d like to list. These include its location, dimensions, availability, and so on.
- Just like Airbnb, Neighbor.com will have price suggestions you can consider.
- The last step covers security checks, including your identity verification and payment details.
Optimizing Your Listing
One downside that’s inherent to easy-to-use platforms is the increased competition.
This is especially true for Neighbor because there is no upfront cost to get the asset, and listing the asset is user-friendly.
But there are a few things you can do to increase your chances of success.
One is to post high-quality images of your space. And you don’t need a high-end DSLR or mirrorless camera, either. Most smartphones will work as long as your lighting and technique are as good.
For example, shooting from a low angle with the camera plane parallel to the subject does wonders.
Next, and maybe this goes without saying, make sure your space is clean with no eyesore pieces. I’d prefer clean ones over messy listings, even if it is storage space.
Another tip is to include as much detail as possible. People appreciate knowing what they’re going to get, so don’t shy away from highlighting the good and spilling the not-so-good. They want to know if your space is right for them.
By being specific with your descriptions, you’re likely to get renters who actually prefer what you have.
Pros of the Neighbor App
- User-friendly platform and easy sign-up process
- High cash-on-cash returns due to the low (to no) upfront investment
- High-growth startup
Cons of the Neighbor App
- Competition can be stiff
- Success can be location-specific, but that’s generally true with real estate
- Still technically a startup
Should You Use Neighbor?
For me, the answer to this question is an easy “yes.”
The platform is dedicated to its participants’ safety and security, and the decision comes down to economics.
So, even if it’s just $50 a month in passive income, that’s still $50 you wouldn’t have had otherwise. That’s also income earned without leaving the house.
Neighbor.com can be the answer for people looking to maximize their property’s earning potential.
It is a wonderful opportunity to earn additional income on spaces you have on hand. Sometimes, the best investments are right under our noses.
With the extraordinarily high cash-on-cash returns that beat many alternatives, it’s an easy choice.
Head on over to Neighbor.com and start earning rent on your unused spaces.