Before 2008, there was no such thing as Airbnb. Since then, the company has grown to a global service providing affordable accommodations to all kinds of travelers. More than a business, it has become a culture, with some hosts signing up for the experience first and the money second.
The process can be confusing, especially if you’re just getting started. But then, hosting an Airbnb is so simple that all you need is a room and a phone. Read on for tips on how to get started.
Step one: Sign up.
Signing up on Airbnb is as simple as the other signs-ups you’ve done recently. As with other platforms, it’s essential to build trust with your profile. That means being as clear and transparent as possible. Fill out your profile with helpful details, and don’t gloss over important things — people will notice.
Include a crisp and clear headshot of yourself. If you’re hosting as a couple, make sure you’re both in the picture for additional credibility points. Next, complete the identity verification, connect your phone number, and add social media accounts.
It also helps to make your profile as personable as possible. Talk about your house, how you got to live there, and your personality. More importantly, talk about what guests can expect during their stay.
Step two: Create a listing.
Here, you provide details about the prices you’ll charge and your available hours. This process can be confusing, which is why the platform guides you through the whole process. All you have to do is be ready with answers about your home.
Airbnb calculates the fees you can charge based on a few factors like location, facilities available, and the prices of other Airbnbs near you. Besides filling a few fields, you won’t have to lift a single finger when creating your listing.
Step three: Be transparent with what’s available.
How do you feel when you lodge at a hotel that promised free WiFi only to find out it was a lie? Like the rest of the rational population, you probably hate it. Likewise, you should be honest when describing your home’s offerings. It only takes a few guests with negative reviews to expose the ruse and tank your ratings.
Being honest doesn’t mean you can’t put a positive spin on some of your home’s shortcomings. For example, if your area gets noisy at night, frame it as a lively location, with an active nightlife. Is it far from the main attractions in town? Describe it as a serene place, removed from the noise of the city. Like you, some guests will appreciate the quirks of your home.
The amenities you provide are also crucial pieces of the puzzle. Guests want to be as comfortable as possible. Some crucial amenities include WiFi, coffee, and towels. Optional amenities include toiletries, breakfast, snacks, and a map of the area. All of these will go a long way in getting you guests.
Classy finishes like hardwood flooring and high ceilings can also be enticing to guests. They give the place an elegant and sophisticated finish. If your flooring was done by industry experts like HomesPure, even better!
Step four: Post stunning pictures of your home.
If Instagram and smartphone camera technology has taught us anything, it’s that with the right lighting, backdrop, and extras, you can turn just about anything to photographic gold.
Apply the same principle when taking pictures of your space. Be sure to get enough light and highlight the perks of the space. Make the bed, and leave some chocolate on the pillow for an extra touch. Of course, if you’re not going to do that for every guest, don’t put it in the photo.
Also, try to capture the entire space. Get a wider angle by stepping into a corner or standing on a stool. Be sure to get the most beautiful room elements, like the large window or the paintings on the wall.
Step five: Boost your score through these tips.
Once you complete these steps, you’re ready for business! More and more homeowners are signing up for Airbnb, which means you have some competition. Luckily, Airbnb recognizes great hosts with the “superhost” badge. This badge is awarded to homeowners with great stats like a high response rate and high active users.
Here are tips to help you achieve the ‘superhost’ status.
Update your availability.
One of Airbnb’s criteria is your acceptance rate, or how often you accept bookings. There’s nothing you can do about this if your home is currently unavailable at the time of the request. To protect your score, update your availability regularly. If you’re planning to have family over for the weekend, make sure your calendar reflects that.
Guests love Airbnb because they get to interact directly with the hosts. They can send messages to discuss specifics or concerns with you. It’s crucial to respond as quickly as possible because Airbnb factors this into your overall score. One tip to remember is that the algorithm gives you a better score if you always have the last word in the conversation. A simple “thanks” or a thumbs up will do.
Should you Airbnb your home?
The biggest motivation for hosting on Airbnb is the extra cash you can make with your available rooms. But then, before you sign up, you should understand that hosting a bed and breakfast is a huge commitment, and it’s quite different from having friends stay for a night. Here are two critical factors to consider before you make the switch to being an Airbnb host.
Are you comfortable with strangers in your home?
Most people can’t wait for their guests to go home after a party. For them, privacy is priceless. If this is you, think long and hard before hosting an Airbnb. Not only will your guests stay for many nights, but they will also be strangers.
Are you willing to commit the time?
Hosting an Airbnb will require a considerable time investment, especially in the beginning. If you have busy day-to-day schedules, it may not be for you. Without the necessary effort, your home won’t attract guests, and your plans for a side hustle will crumble. If you don’t have the time, consider reordering your schedule to make time.