Hosting on Airbnb is not half as hard as you may think it is.
There are a few key Airbnb tips for you to learn how to be a good Airbnb host.
Find a place to rent out on Airbnb
Whether it is your entire apartment or house, bedroom, or simply your couch…you will need to have a place that people can rent from you. You can even rent out your van for guests to sleep in.
To be really successful on Airbnb as a host and build trust within the community, you need to accurately describe and represent the accommodations. When guests’ expectation are met or exceeded, you will get a 5 star review. On the other hand, when guests receive less than they expect, you can expect a bad review and a refund request from the guests.
Being truthful and transparent means telling prospective guests EXACTLY what they will get when booking your place…including, but not limited to:
- Description of Airbnb space…number of bedrooms, how many people it fits, type of space, house rules
- Airbnb Amenities list…Is there access to pool? Is there covered parking? Is anything off limits that I see in your pictures?
- Any quirks of the space…Entrance is from within the main house, The neighbors are loud, or that the space is near the train tracks
A question we get asked often is…
Can you Airbnb if you rent?
Can I Airbnb my apartment?
The simple answer is check with your landlord. We give you some great tips on how to have the Airbnb permission talk with your landlord.
Access to Internet
Airbnb is a web-based business, so you will need Internet access to create a profile, create an Airbnb listing, take Airbnb bookings, and to stay in contact with your guests. Duh…that’s obvious…hopefully.
To be a great Airbnb host, you need 24/7 Internet access. All the best hosts have the Airbnb app on their phone, so make sure you get it too. The faster you can take care of a guest issue or need, the better a review you will get…and a better experience the guest will have.
Pro Airbnb Tip: Your Airbnb search rank can be affected by how fast you respond to guest booking inquiries. You will see that the fastest response time it shows on host profile/listing is “within an hour”. Trust me, they calculate it to the minute…maybe even seconds. Be sure you respond as quickly as possible to all booking inquiries. That’s where the Airbnb App comes in handy.
Price your Airbnb for Success
Many new Airbnb hosts don’t know a darn thing about how to price their rental unit. And that’s okay. We have a ton of articles for you to read about concerning your Airbnb pricing strategy.
But to be a good Airbnb host, it’s not hard, you just need to remember:
- Weekends and weekdays are usually different prices (weekends usually higher)
- There may be seasonality in your area (By a beach, summer will be more popular, so charge more at that time).
- Don’t forget about special events like concerts and conventions.
- Lastly, when you are opening a new Airbnb listing, price it lower than the market rate to get bookings and reviews quickly.
Find the right Airbnb price
The quick and dirty way to find a fair Airbnb price is to scope out your competition directly on Airbnb. Here is a long way and a more detailed way.
Here is a quick process to scope out your Airbnb competition:
- Go to Airbnb.com
- Search for a place in your area on today’s travel date. Make sure it is the same:
- Guest Count (eg. 1, 2, 4, 6…)
- Room type (Entire place, Private Room, or Shared Room)
- Optional: Click the “More Filters” and fill those out as thoroughly as possible
- Click on a few listings…see which ones look like yours. Note the prices and make an educated guess of what an average price is for that time of year.
- Remember there is NO perfect Airbnb price. Make an educated guess and test it out.
- Repeat this search for different seasons (spring, fall, summer, winter) to see if your place has any seasonality opportunities.
Want an automated way to do this? Check out Wheelhouse for automated dynamic pricing (highly recommended).
Be helpful and be rewarded
Becoming a good Airbnb host is recognizing that you are in the hospitality business.
The definition of hospitality is: “the friendly and generous reception and entertainment of guests, visitors, or strangers.”
Make sure you are taking care of your guests to the best of your ability. That doesn’t mean wait on the hand and foot (or maybe it does if that’s an amenity you offer)…it simply means making sure they feel safe and taken care of.
- Smooth check-in’s and check-out’s…learn more about Airbnb key exchange here.
- Having a detailed 1-page info sheet available when they check in with commonly asked questions
- Making sure your Airbnb is clean…one stray hair can ruin it!
Pro Airbnb Tip: Leave the guests a little gift from somewhere local. Wine and chocolate always work! This can help start their trip off on a good note.
Also, leave your Airbnb guests all of the essentials such as the wi-fi password, instructions on how to use the TV and maybe even a list of your favorite restaurants in the area.
It doesn’t hurt to leave a copy of the house rules out for them to review, too.
Want to step up your Airbnb guest manual? Learn how guest guidebooks could improve your guests’ Airbnb experience.
Pro Airbnb Tip: Don’t forget to leave them your cell phone number in case of emergencies. The Airbnb app works, but having a direct line to you makes them feel even more taken care of.
Participate in the Airbnb review system
Last, but surely not least, to be a good Airbnb host, make sure you are leaving reviews for EVERY guest.
By leaving honest reviews, you are helping to strengthen the trust within the Airbnb community. You only have 14 days to leave a review; so don’t let it slip away.
Pro Airbnb Tip: Leave a review as soon as you can with every guest. This can come in handy when something bad happens with one of your guests. Be cool about it…say, “yes we had a few issues, but we worked together to resolve them quickly”. People find it harder to be mean or talk bad about someone if they just received a compliment.
Here are some other tips on how to GET 5-star Airbnb reviews from your guests.
The secret to Airbnb hosting success
To be a good Airbnb host, you need to be open to new ideas and learning as much as you can. Every month there is a new service provider or an update to the Airbnb system. Learn, learn, learn. Talk with other hosts.
The more you learn and experiment, the better you will become at Airbnb hosting.
Want to take your Airbnb host education to the next level? Check out our Airbnb host course.
Automate Guest Communications & More
Your highest value activity as a host isn’t answering the same questions from prospective over and over again. It’s actually being a great host to your guest who is actually staying with you!
So automate your messaging and much more with tools like SmartBNB, which help guests automated non-essential tasks (as much as 95% of guest communications!).