Interested in becoming an Airbnb host?
Whether you’re thinking about renting out your spare room, vacant holiday home, or your own apartment when it’s not in use, hosting an Airbnb is a great way to make some extra income. You’ll also be providing travellers and holiday makers with a unique and economical place to stay – making it a winning solution for both host and guest.
As seasoned Airbnb host Daniel Kisliakov, says “becoming a host could be one of the most rewarding things you ever do.” Daniel has been a host since April 2015, and has a wealth of knowledge to share about how to build up a successful Airbnb operation.
If you’re thinking seriously about becoming a host, we recommend following some of Daniel’s guidelines to give yourself the best chance of success and stand out from the competition. While every Airbnb is different, there are some key factors you’ll want to consider before jumping in, to make the hosting process a more successful and enjoyable process.
Read on to discover 5 important things to consider when starting your Airbnb.
Evaluate Your Location
Firstly, is the location of your property suitable for an Airbnb?
Ideally, your location will be able to give your guests the best of both worlds – with close proximity to the city, yet sufficiently secluded to give them the privacy they expect on their holiday.
As Daniel says, “as a rule, any place in a few kilometers radius of the city is good.” With his Airbnb conveniently close to Melbourne’s Albert Park, it has the dual benefit of being in a quiet area that is still nice and close to the city.
Set Your Financial Goals
Before posting your place for rent, think about what you want to achieve from becoming an Airbnb host. Are you looking to replace your existing income, or will you be happy with making some additional money from time to time?
Depending on your goals, the amount of money and risk you invest in your Airbnb will be quite different. Make a realistic projection of your earnings and how much capital you want to put into this project. This will make your venture a lot safer and stress-free.
Be Realistic About the Amount of Time Required
Think carefully about how you plan to run the place on a day-to-day basis. Will you clean the place yourself or hire a cleaner to do the job? Do you plan on providing guests with breakfast, or at least something to start with when they arrive?
All of these things will chew up extra time and energy. As will being on call when you have guests, and handling your bookings and emails.
“We’re all time poor, so you want it to take up as little time as possible,” says Daniel very honestly. But this is key to running a successful Airbnb – deciding how much time you want to put into it allows you to work within your own limits, without letting anything get out of hand.
Acknowledging you won’t have time to provide cleaning or meals means you can outsource those aspects to someone else and focus your energy on doing the basics really well. While letting professionals take care of the rest.
Being a successful host is like running a small business. And all businesses need to ensure that they are compliant with certain regulations.
Make sure you properly research your local council’s regulations and apply for any permits you’ll need ahead of time. As Daniel advises, “local councils and owners’ corporations might have clauses governing short-term accommodation, so always ensure that there aren’t any problems in this regard.”
You’ll also want to consider insurance options. Airbnb have some insurance offerings, but many hosts prefer to have additional insurance. The range of Airbnb-specific products is growing, so you’re bound to find something that suits your needs. Having peace of mind is well worth the investment in insurance.
Add Your Own Personal Touches
Last, but not least, be sure to add your own personal touches to your Airbnb. Spend time considering how best to prepare your property for guests, to make sure it’s welcoming, clean and a comfortable ‘home away from home’.
This personalised aspect is the secret to being a great host with a successful Airbnb. Guests choose to stay in Airbnbs to get away from the stock standard hotel chains and sterile serviced apartments. So highlight the things that make you different from the competition, sell your unique point of difference to your guests.
For example, if you’re passionate about the environment and green living, why not focus on making your Airbnb more eco-friendly? Environmentally conscious travellers and holiday makers will appreciate and value this point of difference and be more likely to choose your accommodation over the competition.
Hopefully this has provided you with some important things to consider before you start your Airbnb adventure. Good luck!
We’ll leave you with some final tips from Daniel – “always consider the essentials, high speed wireless internet is a must. Attend meetups where you can catch up with like-minded hosts to share experiences and tips. And most importantly: have fun!”
Author: Kerrie-Anne Chinn
Freelance Copywriter & Editor, working with ethical companies to create positive change.