Airbnb is the world’s best-known online marketplace for booking vacation rentals and private rooms. With more than 100 million users in 191 countries worldwide, it’s no wonder there are more than 640,000 hosts registered on the platform, and the number of hosts continues to grow daily.
If you’re a first-time vacation rental owner, you’re probably wondering how you can make your rental stand out from the crowd. The good news is that it’s more than possible, and this complete Airbnb rental management guide will share everything you need to know.
If you want to know how to manage Airbnb properties, create the perfect profile and listings, you’re in the right place. Managing Airbnb rentals will be hard work, but everything falls into place when you know what to do.
There are professional property management companies who will do it all for you, but if you follow the advice in this guide, you’ll be able to turn your empty rental property into a thriving and bustling vacation rental. In addition, you’ll soon be managing an Airbnb rental property all on your own.
Getting Your Property Ship Shape
When you’re managing an Airbnb property, there are standards you have to meet. To start with, you must check that your property is structurally sound. It also has to comply with the local fire code.
Next, you need to look around your property to see whether you can make any repairs or improvements.
Some of the following may require a financial investment. Some will cost nothing at all.
This has to be the most obvious improvement, and in many cases, there may be little more to do than simply taking out the garbage. If you’ve got a patio area, you can bring it back to life with a power wash along with brick paths, driveways, cement fixtures, shingles, and vinyl siding.
A Fresh Lick of Paint
You’ll be amazed how fresh your Airbnb rental looks after a fresh lick of paint. However, try not to go too overboard with the colors because it might put vacationers off.
White will give the illusion of space, but most people will find pastel shades acceptable if you need a touch of color.
A fresh coat of paint inside and outside will also show you care about the property.
Restore Your Flooring
You might think this is a mammoth undertaking, but it’s easier and cheaper than you think. There are plenty of tutorials online that will guide you through the process, regardless of the type of flooring.
As the second biggest interior feature, if you restore your flooring, it will make quite a difference.
Make the Exterior More Appealing
There’s nothing more unattractive than an outdoor space that’s overgrown with vegetation and vines. Likewise, a bland and colorless exterior is equally unappealing.
Making your outdoor space more attractive is something you can do at minimal expense. Trim the lawn, plant out a flower border, install a birdbath, and it’ll look so much more appealing.
Evict the Pests
The bugbear (get the play on words?) of most Airbnb hosts is unwelcome critters such as ants, cockroaches, ticks, and other kinds of bugs. Mosquitoes can also be a problem. Get rid of any standing water, and they won’t find your rental property quite so attractive.
Check the Plumbing and Electrical Fixtures
Make sure all your plumbing and electrical fixtures are working correctly. Many of your plumbing and electrical appliances require regular servicing as well, so check this off your list and make it part of your maintenance schedule.
To help you keep on top of all your Airbnb maintenance tasks, it helps if you’re the hands-on type. However, if DIY, repairs, and renovation aren’t your forte, it’ll help if you’ve got a few telephone numbers near to hand, for example:
- Reliable house cleaners
- A trustworthy plumber and electrician
- A landscaper or gardener
You Need to Have a Plan
Managing an Airbnb is more than just keeping the property clean, well maintained, and attractive. If you’re serious about making a success of your Airbnb, you’ve got to do some research, make projections, decide on a strategy, and run the numbers.
A business plan is important because it:
- Gives your business the best chance of success
- Makes managing an Airbnb more manageable and effective
- Allows you to focus on key tasks
- Identifies any potential weaknesses
- Helps you make sound business decisions
Several steps are involved if you want to write a sound business plan. First, you’ll need to analyze the local market. How does your vacation rental property fit with what’s already there? There are many tools you can use to help you find the answers, such as those from Mashvisor.
To start looking for and analyzing the best investment properties in your city and neighborhood of choice, click here.
You also need to define your niche. In other words, who your target guest is going to be. Will they be couples, families, bachelors, business travelers, cyclists, hikers, or anyone else? You can provide appropriate amenities for that specific audience when you niche down.
How to Calculate Your Airbnb Rates
Calculating your Airbnb rates has a role to play in managing an Airbnb, and there are a few ways you can approach this task.
Unless your Airbnb enjoys constant summer sunshine all year round, you will have to work with a range of rates based on the seasonal peaks of vacation rental demand.
You need to gather some data to help you decide on your rates, and you can do this using an Airbnb calculator or search for similar properties and see what they charge.
You’ll be able to make a more qualitative assessment by searching for similar properties. You’ll be able to compare amenities and furnishings, and if yours are much higher quality, you’ll be able to charge a higher rate.
An Airbnb Location Rate Calculator gives you more of a general price range for an area, although you can add filters for a more accurate range.
Managing an Airbnb and Your ROI
Most people find themselves managing an Airbnb as an investment which means you’ll need to know your ROI.
According to data from Airbnb, hosts have earned a total of more than $110 billion through the platform as of October 2020. It also estimates the average annual earnings to be $7,900.
Working out how close you are to that average is not an exact science because so many contributing factors exist. Managing Airbnb is a business of fluctuations. Your bookings are tied to seasonal traffic, local competition, and economic conditions.
If you want to estimate your profits, there’s a simple formula you can use:
- (Average monthly rate – Airbnb host service fees) minus (maintenance + services + amenities) = profit estimate
Nailing Your Airbnb Listing
We’ve already established there’s a terrific amount of competition when it comes to managing an Airbnb and making a success of it.
The final and most critical step for you going into 2022 is to nail your listing. It’s a key part of the puzzle and with a standard vacation rental, the listing is what potential guests see first. They will base their decision on what they know about your property and the only way for them to find out any information is to check out your listing.
To ensure your listing stands out and has that all-important wow factor, there are a few simple things you can do.
Have a Great and Normal Photo
Having a true-to-life photo of your property will go a long way to making your Airbnb a success. However, don’t forget that a picture can speak a thousand words, so be careful which image you pick for your profile.
Your profile image should reflect your business, but a welcoming smile will give off a much friendlier vibe. If you’re a couple or family who is hosting, make sure you all appear in the profile photo.
Create an Eye-Catching Title
This is a way to grab the attention of potential guests from the get-go. Your title should describe what you have to offer.
Target Your Title to Your Key Market
You’re only going to attract your ideal guests if you give them what they want. For example, if your market is young visitors make sure you mention how close your vacation rental is to nightclubs and bars.
Your Title Should Do More Than Just Describe Your Unit
Put something descriptive in the title to make it stand out from the crowd. For example, would you be more likely to click on a description that says simply “One bedroom apartment” or “Chic designer one-bedroom apartment overlooking Central Park”?
Avoid Unnecessary Location Information
Avoid being too generic about the location and try to put something specific instead. For example, are you near a famous landmark or big sports center?
Change Your Title Up From Time to Time
Your title isn’t something that’s set in stone. Why not change your title if there’s a local event taking place? You could also carry out a test to see what works best for your property. Try different inviting tips, keep each title on your listing for a couple of weeks and see which brings the most bookings.
Write a Great House Description
You can use your Airbnb listing to change the way guests think about your property. If you want to get ahead of the game and create an awesome house description, try one of these tips:
- Appeal to Your Audience: Choose a language that appeals to your target audience. Try to put yourself in their shoes and think about the details that would entice them to stay.
- Don’t Be Too Formal: Airbnb’s advice is to write how you talk. Your listing is the first point of contact so try to convey your personality.
- Make the Most of Your USP: What is it that your property boasts that no one else around you has? Your unique selling point should be exclusive to your vacation rental.
- Compose a Story: A long list of amenities is not enough to attract guests. Instead, compose a story of what their vacation will be like. Try to give them a vivid image of their stay.
- Keep it Short and Sweet: An increasing number of people use their smartphones when looking for vacation rentals. Write in short, concise sentences because this is easier to view via Airbnb’s mobile app.
- Stick to the Specifics: The specifics rather than generic descriptions will win over more bookings. Think of things that set you apart from your competitors.
Upload High-Quality Photos
The ultimate aim of your Airbnb listing is to get bookings. Potential guests aren’t able to see your property in person, so you have to sell it with the help of some high-quality images.
Thanks to technology, it’s possible to take some fantastic shots with just a smartphone camera, but not everyone has an eye for the perfect shot. Airbnb offers a professional photography service, but it’s not available everywhere. In such cases, it might be worth hiring a professional photographer yourself.
Set Some House Rules
If you want your guests to know what you expect of them, set some house rules and include them in your listing. You can outline anything that’s not permitted or out of bounds in these rules.
Verifying your account adds an authentic layer of trust and security not just for yourself but also for your guests. Verifying different aspects of your account is very easy. Your profile can be verified in several ways, for example:
- Phone number
- Email address
- Offline and online ID:
- Verified photos
Once you’ve verified any of these details, they will show on your profile.
Build Your Reputation
Many different things can impress your guests and encourage them to recommend you to others. Here are just a few suggestions:
- Communicate with your guests
- Make yourself available
- Make the check-in process welcoming
- Make the check-out process easy
- Leave your guests to get on with it
- A gentle prod could get them to leave a great review
Armed with this complete guide, you’re well on the way to success. We said at the beginning it would require lots of hard work. However, now you can see what’s needed, it’ll make the work much easier.