When you look at how much comparable rooms rent, you should adjust for the circumstances (smaller bedroom versus master versus own bathroom versus share versus basement, etc).
Personally, I’d rather do a utility split too. Utilities included in rent tends to promote waste, sort of like an all you can eat buffet and a lot of times you can’t charge enough additional rent and get quality tenants to come close to covering their share of utilities anyway.
I’d rather charge a bit under market and have greater selection of quality tenants to choose from.
Look into federal and local housing discrimination laws. Landlords can get caught up by listings that they think are okay but that are discriminatory (women looking for women, no kids, etc).
There are tenant screening services that you can pay to run credit and background checks. I’ve never used them, but Bigger Pockets (in my opinion the absolute best real estate investing website) partners with Smart Move for tenant screening. That will give you an idea of what a screening service provides and costs. If you search tenant screening (or basically any other question) on Bigger Pockets, you’ll get tons of results from other landlords on who they use. Second the employment check and calling landlord references. Some people call references pretending that they are prospective tenants first just to screen out fake references. It’s quite popular in my area to insist upon an impromptu house with a tenant you’re interested in where they currently live to see how they keep the place. But that’s usually with lower end type rentals and I don’t know how more well to do prospective tenants and tenants in your are might react. But the best way to tell how they will treat your place is how they treat their current place.
There are tax implications, perhaps have an accountant, CPA, or service do your taxes for the first year or so to get an idea of the considerations and then decide for yourself if you still want help or feel confident on doing it on your own?
Some attorneys will charge you a few hundred to do your first lease for you and then you can continue to use and update it. Worth it. Don’t look up just any old attorney, but rather a real estate attorney. If you use a real estate agent or a tenant placement service to do lease up for you, they often can provide you a sample lease. You could try Legal Zoom or some other online provider. If you know a landlord in your locality, you might ask them for their lease. Quality of the lease will obviously vary.
Good luck and hope it works. P.S. if you’re in a good vacation area that allows it and have the right mentality and willing to do the extra work, you can often make much more Air B&Bing the room than simply renting it.