Thinking of listing your property on Airbnb.com- check out these Airbnb host tips before you move forward!
Airbnb is one of the largest and most popular marketplaces in the US, but there are other options like HomeAway, FlipKey, and VRBO too. Some sites specialize, like Misterbnb focuses on gay-friendly accommodations.
Make sure you understand the laws- local laws may supercede information you find on Airbnb.com. For instance, New York City hosts have received thousands of dollar fines for renting their apartments through sites like Airbnb.com. Sometimes it is more worthwhile to go the formal route of making your home an officially licensed bed and breakfast.
Hosts need to pay taxes on the rental spaces. As a host, you are responsible for reporting the earnings when filing your tax return. Take this into account when balancing costs versus possible earnings, as well as what to charge.
Before you get started, you will need to create a concise source of information with house rules, local attractions, Wifi password, your contact information, and any other important information for guests. Be sure to include emergency numbers like 911. There will also be an initial investment in things like extra bedding, towels, and soap. Make sure your description and photos do the work selling your space for you.
You may also consider listing your space on multiple platforms like Airbnb- just make sure you know the rules and regulations of each site! Also, research each site’s fee structure and insurance coverage. Some hosts use Airbnb to cover their vacation costs!
Take into account ongoing expenses like cleaning supplies and toilet paper, plus the effect that guests will have on utility bills. Consider buying consumables in bulk and/or charging a cleaning fee to help offset these costs and the time spent cleaning between guests.
Read part 2 for more great tips!
Sign up as an Airbnb host, what are you waiting for?
Image By Airliners1982 – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=9411602