Managing Other People’s Properties on Airbnb with Co-hosting

Are you looking for a way to earn extra income but you’re short on time? Are you hoping to find a way to make passive income with an easy side hustle that fits your already busy schedule?

Managing other people’s properties on Airbnb might be the opportunity you’ve been waiting for. It’s a way of making money with Airbnb without having to rent out your own property. It’s low risk and doesn’t require much investment of your resources. Most importantly, it pays really well and offers a great ROI for your time.

Airbnb property management is officially known as co-hosting.

It’s different than Airbnb arbitrage, which is where you rent property in the traditional sense and then list them on Airbnb as short term rentals.

Co-hosting is a way to alleviate a lot of the burdens traditional Airbnb hosts deal with. There are a lot of people out there who have extra space and the ability to host guests but they don’t have the time to set up a listing and keep it active. That’s where you come in as a co-host.

What is Airbnb Co-Hosting?

Airbnb launched its co-hosting program in the fall of 2016. It was intended to help people with extra space but no time to host. People who want to co-host sign up if they are willing to assist other people with their listings and hosts have the option of finding a co-host that is in your local area.

As a co-host, you get a lot of flexibility. You can choose the services you’re able to help with, including:

  • Handling reservations through the Airbnb platform
  • Messaging and communicating with guests
  • Checking in guests when they arrive
  • Updating the listing calendar
  • Organizing cleaning and other services for listed properties
  • And more

Co-hosting is relatively new and surprised many people when the program was launched. This is because previously, the platform frowned upon the management of listed properties by non-owners. As a matter of fact, Airbnb was known to shut down listings that were managed by other people or a property management company, especially in major travel destinations.

Once Airbnb had spread into some of its target markets and the company saw how lucrative it could be to allow property management, it changed its stance on it and began encouraging the practice through its official co-hosting program.

How Do You Co-Host an Airbnb?

Setting up to co-host is relatively simple. It’s easier if you’re already familiar with the Airbnb website or renting on Airbnb but even newcomers should be able to figure it out.

The listing owner offering an opportunity to co-host adds the “Airbnb Co-Host” option after creating the property listing. This is listed in the settings on the bottom right-hand of the menu.

If a property features this option, you can contact the property’s owner and offer to co-host. As a co-host, you can organize and manage the listing.

You also receive payment automatically from the platform so you don’t need to worry about property owners paying you. Airbnb stopped offering automated splits for co-hosts, though, so if you want to create a payout, the property’s host must set up a payout percentage in the payment preferences on the website. Or, there will need to be a monthly invoice. It’s not quite as simple as it once was but it’s still easy to handle.

How Do You Get Deals as a Co-Host?

As you might expect, co-hosting is competitive work. There’s a great demand for co-hosting services out there and this is expected to grow. That said, because co-hosting is such a lucrative side gig, it attracts a lot of competition. You need to do all you can to make sure you are an attractive option for Airbnb property owners.

Several things help you get high-paying co-hosting gigs. For instance:

  • Hosting experience of your own. It’s not necessary but if a potential co-host knows you’ve managed a property, they know you know your stuff.
  • Superhost status. Learn what you need to do to achieve and maintain it and then do these things.
  • Winning trust. The more people trust you, the more they are willing to turn over a portion of their business to you.
  • Market rate. Don’t price yourself out of the co-hosting market. It’s important to know your value, but not to overshoot your competition by too much.

If you aren’t chosen as a co-host every time you offer, don’t be discouraged. Some of the most experienced co-hosts only get chosen about 20 percent of the time. Keep trying and work on making yourself a more attractive choice.

How can you get noticed as a co-host and find people in need of co-hosting when there’s no Airbnb sanctioned co-host directory?

It helps to create a business plan before you get too far into co-hosting. Decide how to run your business and what approach you’ll take. For instance, you can co-host properties anywhere but for many people, it makes more sense to choose local properties. This gives you more credibility and means you can provide a more comprehensive list of services to the property owners.

It’s also important to make smart financial choices when launching a co-hosting business.

For example, you need an idea of how much time it takes to co-host so you can set your rate accordingly. Knowing what’s involved in a co-hosting situation helps you determine if it’s something that will take you just a few hours a month or if you are looking at a significant amount of weekly work.

Some co-hosts just need someone to manage their listing and respond to guest emails while other people want someone to completely take over the management of their listing. Knowing what you want to contribute and what a potential host is requesting gives you the leverage to quote an accurate price. It might be best to put together a package of what you offer in different price ranges.

If you are a property owner, it’s important to know what you want in a co-host. If you are planning to use Airbnb as a passive income side gig, you don’t want to invest a significant amount of time into the effort.

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