The sharing economy is alive and growing. Not only has Uber taken the transport industry by storm, but Airbnb has also heavily impacted the hotel and accommodation industry.
If you are lucky enough to have multiple properties you may be considering using Airbnb to provide another source of income.
But before you start letting strangers into your home, there are a few things you should do to prepare your property first.
Not only do you need to protect your valuables, but you must also ensure your guests have an enjoyable experience.
After all, they get to rate their stay at your place, and if you get good ratings this will help you attract more guests.
Maximise Security for Your Property & Valuables
When renting your property out to friends you may be comfortable having all your valuables on display. However, when it comes to complete strangers, many people feel uncomfortable doing this.
When preparing your property, it is a good idea to declutter your home as much as possible. Leave the essentials and only items that you are comfortable for people to use.
You may decide to move all the valuable items and heirlooms into a spare room and then install a lock to keep your guests out.
Or you may choose to move everything out of your property altogether if you have other storage options.
Another consideration is how people enter your property. Many people choose to leave a key in a hidden location and then tell their guests where to find it so they can gain access.
The problem with this is there is nothing stopping your guests from taking your key to the local hardware store and getting a copy cut.
This would allow them to regain access to your property at a later date without your knowledge or authorisation.
The best way to ensure your property is always secure is to install smart locks on your doors.
Smart locks that can be opened with a combination are best. Then you can inform your guests of the combination that they can use during their stay.
With smart locks, you can change the combination once they depart, thus your entry doors will always remain secure.
Create a Pleasant Experience for Your Guests
It is important to note that Airbnb is a platform built on reviews and ratings.
Each time someone stays at your property they get to rate their overall experience. You also get to rate your guests, and this can help you know the quality of a person before you agree to let them stay.
Your home’s rating helps other guests who may be considering staying at your property. Needless to say, if a guest has a choice between two or more properties which are all offering similar features, they will most likely choose the one with the highest rating.
For this reason, you want to do all you can to achieve positive feedback. By creating a pleasant experience for your guests, you will be off to a great start.
Make sure you are always helpful and quick to respond to new guest enquiries and questions about your property. This is the first impression people will get when talking with you, so make it a good one.
Keep Your Home Cool & Comfortable
If your home does not already have an aircon installed, you should really consider it.
Air conditioning is pretty much standard in any hotel accommodation these days. So, to compete with the rest of the market you need to keep up.
Depending on your location you may get away with just having ceiling fans or even pedestal fans. But by offering ducted or split system air conditioning, you will attract more guests and increase their comfort.
Just make sure to leave some notes for your guests about how to use your AC system to prevent any confusion.
Set up an Easy Arrival & Departure Process
Make it easy for your guests to gain access to your property and provide plenty of information for them about how to look after your place. This can include how to use appliances, open the garage or operate the spa, if you have these available.
You can provide this information using an email template that you send to all your new guests prior to arrival. It is also a good idea to leave a printout on the kitchen or lounge room table for when they first enter your property.
Another thing that many Airbnb landlords do is provide tips on the local sites and attractions. This is a great way to go the extra mile for your guests.
Professional Cleaning Before & After
When you are first starting out you may consider doing the cleaning yourself, but finding a reliable professional cleaner will be better in the long run.
The benefit of doing the cleaning yourself is that you can thoroughly inspect the property after your guests have left. Then you can see how they really treated your property. If you’re finding it difficult to squeeze in cleaning time, consider reaching out to a professional, such as Eloise’s Cleaning Services.
When you have a reliable cleaner that you trust, you can get them to inspect the property and report any damages or theft. Just make sure they take photos to send to you before they start cleaning.
Cleaning the property between stays is essential and with COVID still being a pressing issue, you need to make sure your cleaning process goes the extra mile. Vacuuming, washing sheets and towels, even steam cleaning are all required to prevent the spread of COVID.
Don’t Overlook the Simple Things
When preparing your home for Airbnb guests you need to make sure you are meeting all the essential requirements.
Make sure you have plenty of stock for the basics including, hand soap, toilet paper, paper towels, tissues, plates, cups, cutlery, bed linens, towels, and anything else that people expect to have access to from a hotel-style accommodation.
If there are certain things that you do not want to provide, then make sure you let your guests know in advance so they can bring these items themselves.
Hotels also provide basics like tea bags, instant coffee, cookies, and sometimes other snack items, so you should too.
Be Prepared for Bad Weather
One thing we can never predict is the weather. But you can prepare your home for bad weather activities such as games, movies, books, and other things to keep your guests entertained.
Setup a bookcase with books and DVD movies to give them the option of entertaining themselves indoors if needed. Most people won’t use them, but by offering them they will feel welcomed.
You may also choose to install Wifi in every room and provide Foxtel, Netflix, or some other forms of modern entertainment too.
Board games and cards provide a classic option, not only for kids but to allow everyone to have some fun times away from the screen.
Stay Up to Date with Industry Trends
Being a great Airbnb host requires keeping up to date with your competition. The best way to learn this is by using Airbnb yourself to see what other hosts are doing.
You may learn a trick or two you can incorporate in your homestay.
Also, make sure to read and take note of all feedback that your guests leave. For example, you may learn what people really liked or what they felt was missing from your accommodation.
Always be prepared to make changes to your arrival, departure, and cleaning processes and update your property to keep up with guests’ expectations, requests, and industry trends.
Now You Are All Set
By following these tips, both you and your home will be ready for Airbnb usage.
Get on board with the sharing economy and add another income stream to your bank account.
We wish you all the best as a new Airbnb host.