Tips & Education for Airbnb Hosts
If you’re planning to start renting your home or aspace in your home as an Airbnb, there’s a few things you shouldknow. There’s no denying this is an incredibly lucrativeopportunity for those who are willing to put in the effort tocreate a safe and comfortable place for guests to rent. But it canalso backfire if you try to shortcut your way through things anddon’t have the best interest of your guest in mind whenrenting.
What are 10 of the most important things you need to know beforeyou starting renting on Airbnb?
1. Whether or Not Airbnb Hosting is Legal in Your City
Your first task before you start your short term rental businessis to make sure you can legally be an Airbnb host. Zoning andregistration laws differ from place to place and you need to makesure renting is an option in your area. It’s also important toconsider not just state laws, but also any local legal restrictionson short-term rentals. Additionally, if your property is not yoursand you are renting, or you own a condo or are a member of an HOA,there might be additional things you need to know before yourent.
2. Whether or Not Your Neighbors Will Voice Concerns Over AirbnbHosting
As long as you are legally entitled to rent your Airbnbproperty, you don’t need to worry too much about what yourneighbors think. But as a good neighbor and good host, it’simportant to scope out whether there is a problem. Even awell-intentioned neighbor might create a problem if they seestrangers coming and going from your home, grow concerned, and calllaw enforcement. You might also need to deal withless-than-friendly neighbors not being welcoming to your guests.The best thing you can do is reach out to your neighbors and get afeel for what you can expect once you start your vacation rentalbusiness.
3. How Renting Will Affect Your Taxes
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that earning income fromrenting will affect your taxes. Don’t be caught off-guard whenthe IRS comes calling for a piece of your newly earned rentalincome. Speak to a tax professional in advance so you’ll knowwhat to expect and you can do what’s necessary to avoid anunaffordable tax burden.
4. What to Charge Based on the Going Rate in Your Area
Let’s get one thing straight. You are free to charge whateveryou’d like for renting your property. It’s your place and youcan set its rental rate.
But the rate you choose has a major effect on all aspects ofrenting. Set the rate too high and you’ll chase guests off or setexpectations you’ll never be able to meet. Set it too low andpeople will avoid it because they’ll assume something iswrong.
How do you avoid both of these problems? Compare rates in yourarea and set your rate based on what you find.
5. Identify Your Unique Positioning on Airbnb
When Airbnb first launched, it’s primary focus was on peoplerenting extra space in the homes they occupied. Over time, peoplebegan to invest in second properties where they didn’t live andrenting those. Either works great, but your approach will need tobe different based on where you stand in this equation. If you dorent space in your own home, you’ll need to find ways to separateyour work from your home, which can be complicated when running anAirbnb.
6. Becoming a Good Airbnb Host
Being a good Airbnb host means a lot of things. It requiresflexibility, patience, and a welcoming spirit. It means going theextra mile to keep people comfortable. As long as you have a goodattitude about renting and you’re ready to make your propertycomfortable and inviting, you’ll likely succeed. Airbnb is agreat way to make extra money, but money shouldn’t be your onlyfocus. Before you start renting an Airbnb, think about what you cando to create an accommodating and inviting atmosphere forguests.
7. Setting House Rules as an Airbnb Host
The most important thing you can remember here? Your Airbnb isyour property, so you set the rules. As long as you are operatingwithin the parameters set out by Airbnb, you call the shots. Andit’s best to make them crystal clear to guests so you aren’tinviting problems with ambiguity.
8. Getting a Solid Handle on Cleaning as an Airbnb Host
It won’t matter how comfortable your Airbnb might be or whatamenities you offer guests. Your rental could be in the mostcosmopolitan location on earth or be steps from the greatestattraction in your area. If the home isn’t clean people aren’tgoing to like it. One of the most important things you can dobefore you start renting is to figure out how you’re going tokeep the rental clean. Most people hire a professional cleaningservice to do so and it works out great because Airbnb lets youcharge a cleaning fee.
Note: Given what is going on currently with the global pandemic,all hosts are encouraged to institute Airbnb’s recommendedEnhanced Cleaning Protocols.Nearly 1.5 million listings are already implementing these newcleaning protocols since its introduction only a few months ago andall signs point to it becoming mandatory. Besides, EnhancedCleaning enabled listings are currently 3x more likely to getbooked than other listings.
9. Protect Yourself as an Airbnb Host
Having people stay in your home or a home you are responsiblefor is a risk. You need to have the appropriate measures in placeto protect yourself. For many, this is more important when you arehosting guests in the home in which you live. Make sure you secureany valuables and refer back to previous steps about establishingground rules in your home. This may also mean looking intoinsurance for things like property damage etc.
10. Be Transparent as an Airbnb Host
The last thing you want to do is keep secrets from your guest.You don’t want to over promise and under deliver. If you aregoing to be onsite during your guests’ stay, say so in advance.If there’s something unusual about your home, be upfront about itin the listing. Most people are willing to overlook issues and knowthat staying in a home is not the same as staying in a hotel. Butif they feel you’ve tried to pull one over on them their reviewsare goin
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