When traveling, our lodging options are no longer limited to hotels and hostels.
The rise in popularity of Airbnb and other similar websites has given us more options in terms of accommodation—from vacation houses and townhouses to apartments and condo units.
Many often look for a cozy place to stay in, and instead of booking a room in a posh hotel, there are those who would love to feel like they've never left home at all.
If you recently bought a condo unit or any property, turning it into a space to list on Airbnb is a good way of earning cash on your investment.
To be able to list your space and become a host on Airbnb, you need to go through a standard process that involves submitting requirements and creating a space that would appeal to guests.
Whether you already have a property to work with or you’re planning to buy a property that will be transformed into a home for listing, here are tips to help you get started:
Airbnb's website is easy to use and navigate. The site will ask whether you would like to link your Google or Facebook account to your Airbnb account. From there, you will be directed to a form where you need to key in the details about your space. From the get-go, you’ll already have an idea of how much you’ll earn from the location and size of the property you’re listing.
Paulino Servado, an Airbnb host who has a property in Makati, shares that the website also has validation requirements that you need to submit when listing a space.
“The validation requirements include a photo, an ID, and a Facebook or any other social media account. In order to get approved, you should validate your account using a valid government ID with photo that will be scanned by Airbnb,” he says.
Failure to submit valid IDs to verify your identity may cause your application to get disapproved.
When looking for a home, they say there are three things you need to prioritize: location, location, and location.
The same rule applies when you’re planning to start a business or investing in a property for rentals.
"Ideally, your condo should be located in an area where transient travelers would have the need to visit for business or vacation. These travelers include foreigners, balikbayans, and locals," says Paulino.
It's important to consider the neighborhood where the property is located, too. It’s important that it’s accessible and located near malls, transportation hubs, and even popular tourist destinations. With traffic getting worse by the day, it’s a must to have everything within walking distance, if possible.
Can a small group of people rest comfortably in your space?
Paulino says it’s easy and quite ideal to list a studio or a one-bedroom unit on Airbnb as these can accommodate around two to four people, and is perfect for those who travel in small groups.
How you present and set the price matters to possible guests. It’s not enough that you have a bed, a couch, and a bathroom to offer—you may want to take it to the next level by having well-thought-out interiors.
"When planning to join Airbnb as a host, it’s best to check the surrounding units first to see how you can position your unit against the competition. From there, choose a unique design that can catch the attention of guests. Make sure you set a price point that your target guests can afford," Paulino advises.
After finalizing the look of your property, you need to ensure your guests will have a comfortable and stress-free stay.
To accomplish this, the space must be clean, organized, and equipped with basic essentials. Make sure your guests can prep and store meals in the kitchen if they want to. These days, a reliable Internet connection is a must as well.
"Add-ons like a basket of snacks, a personalized welcome note, Netflix access, and a guide to must-dos around the area are a plus as well. On-site parking and access to the gym and swimming pool are also appreciated by guests," adds Paulino.
As a host, it's also important that guests can reach you easily, especially if they have concerns and inquiries. Aside from keeping your phone lines open at all times, you may also want to have a flexible check-in and check-out times.
Just like any other investment, we need to maintain the condo unit or any property we’re listing on Airbnb.
Since many people use it, and we can’t guarantee that they will care for the space, it’s important to do regular maintenance and checking of the unit to make sure it remains in tip-top shape.
"Regular detailed cleaning of all areas is a must. Don’t forget to check all utilities including water, AC, electrical, cable, and Internet in between guests to avoid problems," Paulino says.
Rental properties are prone to wear-and-tear because of constant use. It’s better that you spot problems and work on easy solutions rather than having guests call you out on it.
He continues, "Always be ready with your customer service contracts and technicians should there be any issues. That way, you’ll be prepared for any last-minute repairs."
These days, reviews—whether good or bad—can spread like wildfire in a matter of minutes. Taking note of these tips and making sure your guests will have a pleasant stay can win you loyal guests and referrals.
Being an Airbnb host requires continuous investment, and if you play your cards right, you’ll continuously reap the rewards, too.