With thousands of aspiring first-time buyers around the country finding themselves forced into rental accommodation to solve their housing woes, landlords have been taking advantage of the growing trend by expanding their portfolios in recent months.

And as well as investors who are well established in the lettings game looking to increase their profits, existing homeowners have also been getting in on the act as they let their spare room out to a lodger.

While taking such a step is an effective way to bring a bit of extra money in each month, Tom Entwistle from LandlordZONE.co.uk explains that people still have to carry out a range of checks to ensure they're going to be sharing their home with someone they can trust.

"You should be careful how you select your lodger as you are taking a complete stranger into your own home," he said.

"Do not allow the lodger to have a locked room - you need to have access to their room otherwise a tenancy may be created by giving the lodger exclusive possession. Do credit checks, references and ID checks."

What's more, beyond looking into the background of a potential lodger, Mr Entwistle says that live-in landlords have to inform their insurance company of their new circumstances, while also complying with official regulations - such as obtaining a landlord's gas certificate.

Indeed, letting a room out to a lodger may be a profitable venture, but there is still a lot to consider from both a legal and a financial perspective.

So if your standard home cover is not going to do the trick, landlord insurance may be a more suitable policy to protect against the cost of any damage, while you will also be required to make sure your property is fitted out with the necessary health and safety measures as you prepare for your lodger.