The Pros and Cons of Hosting on Airbnb
Airbnb has become one of the top ways to make money for yourself and get ahead. It’s opened up real estate investment as a thought for people who wouldn’t have considered it in the past. But is it the right solution for you? As with any big decision, this is one meant for a pros and cons list.
But first, let’s take a wider look at what Airbnb is. The company was started in San Francisco in 2009 by some friends who decided to rent out an air mattress in the middle of their living room. In San Francisco, where space is particularly expensive, this was a lucrative move.
Now, Airbnb functions as an online broker. Individuals, known as hosts, can rent out a spare bedroom, their living room sofa, or an entire apartment or house to travelers passing through. People can rent for one night, a week, or even months. Airbnb doesn’t own any of the properties themselves; they are merely a listing website where hosts can come and share their properties with potential travelers.
So what’s it like being an Airbnb host?
The Pros of Being an Airbnb Host
This is the motivator for signing up, right? The extra income provided by being an Airbnb host is the biggest draw.
More Flexibility Than With a Long-Term Rental
Say you want to rent out your room, but you also need that space available to yourself every third Sunday for a group you have over, and you want to use it every time your friends or family come into town. If you rent the space to a long-term tenant that’s not an option, but with a short term Airbnb rental, you can block dates off on your calendar.
More Income Potential
Short-term rentals charge more for a month-long period overall than a monthly tenant. In this way, if your rental proves popular, you have the potential for more income.
Airbnb Insures You Against Damage
This is a huge benefit as a host because it removes some of the risks you’re taking by renting out your property. You have a major company at your back. They may not help with everything, but this helps enough.
Your Guests Have Profiles
You can check your potential guests’ profiles for reviews, which gives you a bit more information on what they’re like.
You Are Established Early
If you start an Airbnb rental today, then you are established before anyone who starts one tomorrow. If the short-term rental market continues to grow, as many believe it will, this gives you an edge.
You Meet People From All Over
Your guests will sometimes be lovely people. They will be people from an hour’s drive away or flying in from a country you’ve never heard of. You will meet people you never would have met otherwise.
The Cons of Being an Airbnb Host
When you have a long-term rental, with a year long-lease, you have more assurance on what your rental income will be month to month. This income is more stable than with Airbnb where things fluctuate.
Lots of Cleaning
You may be able to hire out for this. If not, then you have a lot of vacuuming, laundry, dusting, and tidying up to do.
Nothing comes for free. This may seem like easy money, but it’s actually another job. Not only will the cleaning take up your time, but you need to be replying to potential guests, messaging the guest coming soon, and staying in communication with the one currently staying with you.
Some Guests Can Be Problems
Not every guest is a cup of tea. Some will be lovely. Others may be noisy, drunk, and they may break things, sometimes without telling you. You have to deal with them.
People In Your Space
It can be hard to have your home feel like your home if you’re renting out space inside it. You can’t walk around in your underwear or leave dishes in the sink for days. You’ll be tidying up common living spaces to impress your guests.
Unhappy Guests And Bad Reviews
This will happen sometimes, even to the best host. You have to grit your teeth and take it. Everyone has their own expectations, and we can’t please them all.
You Can’t Be Spontaneous
You can’t leave town last minute if you have a guest coming. You have less freedom to be spontaneous because you now have guests you’re obligated to.
Is it Worth It?
This is really a question you will have to answer for yourself. Is it worth it to give it a try? Most people will have some hesitation and concerns about trusting other people, but they push past this and find it highly enjoyable and that the cons outweigh the benefits. Others find it to be too much of a hassle. What is the extra income and experience worth to you?Read more on Medium.