How to be a Successful Airbnb Host and Make Money
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How to be a Successful Airbnb Host and Make Money

About the Book

This is a book about how to be a successful Airbnb Host., based on the Author's experience running an Airbnb apartment on his property. This book starts off with describing our experience, what you should consider before becoming an Airbnb host. It then moves onto pricing and pricing strategy (how to get the highest income). It then covers how to prepare for your listing then set it up on Airbnb. Then the book covers inquiries and booking reservations, as well as preparations and cleaning. Then the Guest's stay is covered, including what to do if there are amenity and guest problems. The book goes on to cover what happens once the Guest's stay has completed and this includes reviews and review responses. The book also has information about local government requirements, as well as paying income tax to federal and state.

About the Author

Mark Clow
Mark Clow

I am an Englishman living in Atlanta, GA. I have been a software developer all my life.

About the Contributors

Mark Clow
Mark Clow

I am an Englishman living in Atlanta, GA. I have been a software developer all my life.

Table of Contents


1.   Table of Contents & Disclaimer. 1

Disclaimer 8

2.   Our Experience So Far. 9

Introduction. 9

Our Story So Far 9

Our Dream.. 9

Our Reality. 10

Introduction. 10

Income Breakdown. 10

Your Dream and Your Reality. 11

We Considered Alternatives to Airbnb. 11

Airbnb Rivals. 11

Renting to Friends or Family. 12

Long-Term Rentals. 12

The Good & The Bad. 13

The Good: Income. 13

The Good: Airbnb Has Only Taken 3%.. 13

The Good: We Met Interesting People. 13

The Good: Not Too Many Things Have Gone Missing. 14

The Good: Free Food & Drinks. 14

The Good: Becoming a Superhost 14

The Bad: Close Encounters of the Worst Kind. 14

The Bad: Work. 17

The Bad: Unexpected Things. 18

The Bad: Bad Reviews. 18

The Bad: Taxes. 19

The Bad: Local Government 19

The Bad: Airbnb Service. 19

The Strange: Tinder. 20

Conclusion. 20

Golden Rules 20

Communication with Guests. 20

Communication with Airbnb. 22

Don’t Cancel on Guests. 22

Try to Be There. 22

Good Faith. 23

Intuition. 23

Facts. 23

3.   Considerations….. 24

Introduction. 24

What Kind of Guest do You Want?. 24

Why Are Guests Travelling?. 25

Why Would Guests Stay with You?. 25

How Do You Make Your Guests Happy?. 26

Your Stuff Getting Damaged. 27

Valuable Things. 27

Consider the Rental Like a Hotel 27

Wear and Tear 27

Problem Guests 28

An Ounce of Prevention Is Worth A Pound of Cure. 28

Liabilities 29

Insurance. 29

Homeowners Association & Covenants. 29

Neighbors. 29

Parking. 30

Access 30

Cleaning. 30

Vacuum and Spot Cleaner / Carpet Cleaner 30

Trash. 31

While You’re Away….. 31

Your Pets and Family….. 31

Bank Account 31

Taxes 32

Local Government 32

Sleeping in the Rental 32

Your Time. 32

Conclusion / Start Off Slow.. 33

Start Off Slow.. 33

Start Off Safe. 33

Later On. 33

4.   Pricing & Pricing Strategy. 34

Introduction. 34

Airbnb Terms & Concepts 34

Base Price. 34

Weekend Pricing. 34

Cleaning Fee. 35

Security Deposit 35

Extra Guest Rates. 35

Strategy. 36

Law of Supply and Demand. 36

Get the Most $$$ You Can by Pricing According to Demand. 36

When You Start, Price the Listing Low at First 36

Price According to Demand. 36

Don’t Go Below a Certain Price. 38

Be Honest with the Cleaning Fee. 38

Smart Pricing. 39

How to Set Prices. 39

Initial Pricing. 39

Overriding Pricing. 39

When Do You Set Prices?. 43

Short Term Prices. 43

Long Term Prices 43

When Do You Get Paid?. 44

Returning the Money L.. 44

5.   Preparations Before Listing. 45

Introduction. 45

Blankets, Sheets and Towels 45

Sheets and Towels 45

Blankets. 45

Supplies 46

Vacuum Cleaner 47

Carpet Cleaner 47

Guest Book. 47

Download My Documents. 47

Guest Book & Your Expectations. 48

Guest Book & Safety Info. 48

Guest Book & Useful Info. 48

Signs 49

Waivers 49

Your Photo & Profile. 49

Listing Photos. 50

Listing Documentation. 51

6.   Setting Up Your Listing. 52

Introduction. 52

Listing Details 53

Photos. 53

Rooms and Spaces. 53

Amenities. 53

Accessibility Features. 53

Title & Description. 53

Property & Guests. 54

Location. 54

Guest Resources. 54

Guidebook. 54

Listing Status. 54

Booking Settings 55

How Guests Can Book. 55

Guest Requirements. 57

House Rules. 57

Policies. 59

Pricing. 62

Nightly Price. 62

Length of Stay Discounts. 62

Early Bird Discount. 62

Extra Charges. 62

Currency. 63

Availability. 64

Reservation Preferences. 64

Trip Length. 64

Check-in and Checkout 65

Sync Calendars. 65

Linked Airbnb Calendars. 65

Local Taxes and Laws. 66

Co-hosts 66

Invite a Friend. 66

7.   Inquiries. 67

Introduction. 67

Phone / Tablet App. 67

Response Rate. 67

Response Time. 68

Response Rate & Time Matter 68

How do Potential Guests Make Inquiries?. 68

Responding to Inquiries 71

Timeliness. 71

Typing in Messages. 71

Asking Questions of Your Own. 72

Approving. 72

Declining. 72

Dismissing. 72

8.   Reservation Requests. 74

Introduction. 74

How do Potential Guests Make Reservation Requests?. 75

Receiving a Reservation Request 75

Calendar Dates. 75

Making the Decision. 75

Spotting the Bad Guys. 77

Responding to Reservation Requests 77

Accepting Reservations. 78

Requesting More Information. 78

Declining Reservations. 78

Booking Message. 78

Booking More Than One Week in Advance. 78

Booking Less Than One Week in Advance. 79

Booking Message Purpose. 80

9.   Preparations & Cleaning. 83

Introduction. 83

Practice Makes Perfect 83

Remove Towels, Sheets & Trash. 83

Clean. 84

Replenish Supplies. 84

Other 85

10. The Stay. 86

Introduction. 86

Meet the Guests If You Can….. 86

If You Can’t Meet the Guests….. 87

Amenity Problems 88

Guest Problems 88

Why Do You Get Problem Guests?. 88

Dealing with Problem Guests. 89

After Checkout 93

11. The Aftermath. 94

Introduction. 94

Reviews. 94

An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure. 94

Hosts Should Give Guest Reviews. 94

Wait Before Giving Guests Reviews. 95

Review Visibility & Editing. 95

Bad Reviews. 95

Our Worst Review.. 95

Our Worst Review – Breakdown. 96

Our Worst Review – My Response. 97

Our Worst Review – Conclusion. 97

Responding to Bad Reviews. 97

Light Damages and Damage Claims 98

Decide If Making a Claim is Worth It 98

What You Need to Do. 98

Resolution Center 99

Introduction. 99

What You Can Do. 99

How to Get There. 100

What Do You See?. 100

Send Money. 101

Request Money. 102

Guest Full Refunds 103

Your Place Gets Trashed... 104

Airbnb Host Guarantee. 104

12. Taxes & The Government. 107

Introduction. 107

Local Government 107

The List 107

There is No Way….. 109

Go See them In Person. 109

Raising Prices. 109

IRS. 109

Miscellaneous Income 1099. 109

What We Do. 110

Quarterly Estimated Tax Payments. 110

Annual Tax Return. 111

13. Appendix. 113

Introduction. 113

Airbnb Help Line Number 113

Airbnb Community Website. 113

Superhosts. 113

Purpose. 113

In Reality. 114

Criteria. 114

Host Evaluations. 114

What It Means to Hosts?. 115

Saved Responses 115

How to Get to the Saved Messages Dialog. 115

How to Create a New Saved Message. 119

How to Edit Saved Messages. 119

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