Listing a property on Airbnb for the first time can be an exciting project and one that can yield a significant return year-round if done correctly. Airbnb has provided a welcome income stream for many households, with having an unused room or property being the only barrier to entry. If you have stayed in Airbnb properties before, you will know that there can be a considerable difference in the value offering. Before you put your property live on Airbnb, follow this checklist to ensure you get the bookings, room rate and clientele you are after.
Find the right Airbnb property management partner
Some guests are easy to host, and make a simple ‘Instant Book’ without the back and forth of questions that you can expect from other guests. No matter how long or short the communication process is, the responsibilities do not end there. Rate yielding, cleaning and managing the listing are just some of the duties covered by reliable Airbnb property management in Melbourne. The power of premium photography and a well-styled property cannot be overlooked, and this seems to be an area where a property manager can provide invaluable support and expertise. Discuss your options with an experienced Airbnb property manager, and understand what is included and what fees you can expect from this partnership.
Establish your house rules
Many Airbnb hosts don’t appreciate the importance of a robust set of house rules… until it’s too late. Whether you realise it or not, your rules are just another way to filter out or in a number of guests, so take time to design the right set of rules for you. There are typical rules that cover entertaining (parties), recycling/composting, noise, parking, and more, but a property manager will typically suggest some more suitable rules based on your unique property.
Photography is everything
As we discussed, professional Airbnb photography will play a large role in the interest you get for the property. A poorly styled bedroom with mismatched bed linen may put your property below competitors that have an inferior product and location, simply because they chose to invest in quality photography. You also want to include views and local attractions in your collection of images. An outdoor dining set that gets sun, intricate artwork and even a private reading nook could also be the deciding factor that gets you the booking.
Block out dates in your calendar
When you list your property on Airbnb, always consider what dates you will not be able to host guests and block them out. This will avoid unnecessary communication and explanation, as well as reducing your chance of having your property ranking drop. If you continue to turn down guests over and over, Airbnb will recognise that you are not creating a user-friendly experience, and may penalise you through your position. Once you are operating in an open calendar, you can get excited each time a booking rolls in, knowing you can facilitate that booking.
Define your terms and conditions
Not all terms and conditions are the same on Airbnb, as each host can define what their policy is around booking and cancelling. Most Airbnb hosts will receive a booking, communicate with the guest and approve the stay. Some hosts have ‘Instant Booking’ set up, so that whenever a booking comes through, it is approved and final. There are advantages to both, as traditional bookings allow you to ‘vet’ guests and consider each booking, whereas ‘Instant Booking’ will get you higher on the list of properties and more visible. Hosts can also decide what their policy is on cancelling.
They are as follows:
Flexible cancellations: full refund up to 1 day prior to arrival
Moderate cancellations: full refund up to 5 days prior
Strict cancellations: full refund for cancellations made 48 hours after boking
There is a lot to consider when listing your property on Airbnb, and if finessed correctly you can enjoy financial freedom and a great hobby to manage. Before you list, talk to an Airbnb property manager to see if this is a viable option for you.