Every real estate investor who considers adding an Airbnb property to his/her real estate investment portfolio asks him/herself whether or not Airbnb management differs from traditional rental property management. Well, each investment property requires a specific type of management in order to be a successful real estate investment. Therefore, Airbnb management varies from the management needed for long-term rentals. However, it is interesting to observe that there are some similar steps a real estate investor needs to consider when running either type of these rentals. Yet, there are dissimilarities within these steps. Let’s observe the most common and significant differences between managing an Airbnb vs. a traditional rental property.
Related: Real Estate Investing: Traditional vs. Airbnb Investments
#1 Property Maintenance
One of the main differences between managing long-term rentals and Airbnb management is the maintenance of the property. An Airbnb property requires constant maintenance. This is due to the fact that new tenants (Airbnb guests) come in more often than at a traditional rental property. Moreover, the Airbnb guests are looking to receive a hotel-like experience, which requires effort and involvement. While long-term rentals entail the fixing of a problem or repairing something broken, this is not the case with Airbnb management. The Airbnb property needs to be in a perfect condition all the time. Additionally, the real estate investor should clean after the Airbnb guests and prepare the room or house for the next ones. The latter involves washing the sheets and the towels as well as renewing supplies such as toiletries, coffee, etc. Last but not least, the Airbnb host needs to make sure that the Airbnb guests have everything they need at all times. This brings us to the next point.
#2 Presence of the Real Estate Investor
As previously described, the landlord of an Airbnb property should make the Airbnb guests feel comfortable. This will ensure a great experience at his/her property. This is essential as the tenants would have the opportunity to rate the Airbnb property online and either rank it as a property to stay at or a one not to visit. Therefore, the Airbnb host should be available all the time in case the Airbnb guests need something. For instance, if the air conditioning is not working properly, you cannot postpone that for the next day/week as it is typical for traditional rental properties. The Airbnb host needs to fix the problem as soon as possible. Additionally, it is important that the real estate investor provides the short-term tenants with some useful information. For example, instruct them how to use the TV and the air conditioning as well as where they can find extra pillows/blankets. It is also a great idea to provide your Airbnb guests with a map of the city. You might show some attractions to visit. Additionally, provide a map of the public transportation. In this sense, Airbnb management differs a lot form traditional investment property management as it requires a higher level of involvement.
Related: Why Are Airbnb Reviews of Guests So Important for Real Estate Investors?
#3 Furniture and Appliances
When it comes to Airbnb management, furniture and appliances are amongst the first things to be considered. Even though a traditional investment property might be rented out furnished or not, the situation is different with an Airbnb property. The latter type of real estate investment should certainly be furnished when rented out to tenants. Moreover, the rental property needs to be fully equipped in order to provide your Airbnb guests with the best experience possible. This might involve adding appliances such as: a washer, a dryer, an iron, a blow-dryer, a coffee machine, a microwave, a stove, and so on and so forth. Additionally, a great advice is to decorate the place so it feels nice and welcoming. This is essential as it will create a better feeling for the tenants and, potentially, increase your ratings as an Airbnb host. Do not forget to stock supplies such as the ones mentioned in the paragraphs above. Furthermore, in order to ensure a proper Airbnb management, you will need to provide bedding and towels as well as kitchen utensils for your Airbnb guests.
The tenants are the most important part when it comes to long-term rentals management as well as Airbnb management. Traditional rentals have the advantage of signing a lease contract for a longer period of time. In this way, the landlord can be sure that the real estate investment will be occupied, and he/she will receive rental income. Moreover, once the contract has been signed, the real estate investor does not have to be really involved in interacting with the renters. Successful Airbnb management requires a different approach. First and foremost, the landlord (the Airbnb host) should ensure he/she is doing everything possible to keep the place occupied. This also includes receiving high ratings on the Airbnb website. Moreover, Airbnb management typically involves being interactive with the occupants (the Airbnb guests). You might need to give them some more information about the property or the city itself. You might also be willing to show them around, cook for them, etc. Either way, while long-term rental contracts are pretty strict and business-like, a high level of hospitality is needed to run an Airbnb property.
Finally, when managing an Airbnb property, do not forget about the competition. Traditional rentals usually do not have high level of competition. The reason for that is that each long-term rental has a specific target group of tenants. As this might also be valid for every Airbnb investment property, some other characteristics apply as well. Airbnb rentals have a high level of competition as their rivals are both hotels and other Airbnb rentals. Therefore, when running an Airbnb property, it is necessary to create an attractive way to present it. Moreover, it is essential to adapt your prices constantly, while comparing them to hotels and other similar rental properties.
Related: 10 Tips for Beginner Real Estate Investors: Making Money with Airbnb
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