Updated: Jun 12, 2019
Whether you are working a full time job, retired or a student needing a little extra moola one way to do this is by becoming an Airbnb host and no, you don’t have to have a huge property portfolio to do this. You can share a room in your apartment, rent out your house when you go on holiday and if you have a great backyard you can set up a ‘glamping’ area! Just make sure it really is glamping though and not a two man tent next to the dog kennel! In this post we show you how to make some serious extra cash in your spare time with Airbnb.
As an Airbnb host you get to choose when and how often you want to host, how much you want to price your place and how you want your guests behave during their stay. You are totally in control of when you want to rent out your space and if you want to offer discounts or special offers and/or added services for your guests.
How to become an Airbnb Host
Step one: It’s all done online and free to list. Get creative and write a good description, have a look at some real estate adverts to see how the professionals list properties. Just be careful not to give misleading information because the idea is to have your guests love your property so much they write great reviews and spread the love.
Step two: Upload photos and really do make sure they are good quality.
Step three: Set the dates, availability and price
Signing up for Airbnb and listing your home is completely free. Once you receive a reservation, we charge an Airbnb service fee for hosts, generally 3%, to help cover the cost of running of the business.
Now you are in business!
How you make money with Airbnb
To get motivated check out what other hosts are making in your area! This will no doubt get you excited and before you know it you would be earning extra cash to go on a holiday, pay some debts and other endless good things.
Airbnb makes the payment process simple, too. Guests are charged when a reservation is made, and funds are typically released to hosts 24 hours after check-in. How you’re paid is up to you: You can set up direct deposit, PayPal or other options.
Extra money for services
You can require additional fees upfront such as equipment rental, cleaning, tours which guests can pay through the Airbnb app after they make the booking.
Customise your offers
You may choose to set different prices for seasons, weekends, or you may choose to give weekly or monthly discounts for people who choose to stay for longer periods. Maybe you might like to focus on backpackers or a safe environment for women travelling alone.
Airbnb want you to be successful and they provide a huge range of tools for you to use. There’s also hosting tips on the Airbnb blog or you can head over to the Community Centre and chat to more experienced hosts who will be happy to help.
If in the rare event there’s an accident or damage your property is covered up to one million dollars as an Airbnb host and there’s no extra charge for this peace of mind. And as for the folks staying at your place, everyone who travels on Airbnb needs to submit a profile photo and confirmed phone number and email address. For extra assurance, you can also require your guests to submit a government-issued ID.
Local Travel Advice and Guide
Hosting can also help you show off what makes your city great. Nothing’s more frustrating than meeting a visitor on the last day of their trip and hearing that they only saw the tourist haunts. When you welcome travelers from around the world as a host you can almost become a local travel guide and share your local community and city expertise with your visitors.
Things you can do as a guide for your guests:
Show them the best places to shop
Send them the best places to eat such as restaurants, markets and gourmet food stores
Give advice on the best walks in town, places to visit such as museums, zoos, iconic buildings
Let your guests know about any special events in your city that are happening when they stay
How to Get Repeat Business as an Airbnb Host
If you have never been in business before then here are a few basic marketing tips.
The best way of marketing, in my opinion, is to have word of mouth and referral business and you get that by offering exceptional customer service and experience. The idea is to have people talk about you in a positive way on social media and to their friends and family.
Create a welcome back for your guests. You could have some printed material on local transport, shopping hours, things to do in your city and more. Include local brochures from tour centres and businesses to add to your pack.
Chat to local businesses in your area and see if you can do some sort of host beneficiary i.e. refer to each other's business maybe the local Thai restaurant can offer your guests a free drink when you send them their way, and in return you could leave some business cards?
Create lasting and meaningful relationships with your guests without being intrusive. You should strive to making your guests feel as comfortable as possible and at home.
Consider having a little welcome hamper for your guests with local produce such as jams, homemade bread, wines or whatever is a good fit and doesn't cost a fortune. Maybe you could be a relationship with suppliers who could sell you the products at a discount.
Start a database on Google Docs keeping names and emails, and birthdays of your guests and send them a birthday card or Holiday card.
Build your own website and link your Airbnb listing on it. You can also build a blog about your local knowledge of the area which will give you credibility. Of course you could take bookings directly but you are probably better off directing your customers to book through Airbnb so you are covered by insurance, the guests are screened and it saves you a lot of work. If you need help with building a website check out my site www.debcarr.com
Start hosting now, and you can start earning extra money toward your own adventure and dreams!