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If you have an extra room in your home, you may be sitting on a potential gold mine! Airbnb and other peer-to-peer rental options have made it very easy to place a listing and then have renters come to stay in your home or other property for a reasonable cost - maybe even more than you think your room is worth! If you're considering how to maximize the return on an empty room by listing it on Airbnb, here are a few tips to get you started and create a listing that brings the guests right to you!
1) Complete Your Profile
Really, complete your profile. Profiles with no images or information about the owner(s) aren't as well received as those whose owners have actually provided some real-life information. If you're at a loss for words, Airbnb has suggestions and prompts on what to include. This also includes posting a headshot and getting verified. Taking the time to link your social accounts (LinkedIn, Facebook, Google) and upload your identity documents raises the validity and security of your profile.
2) Create a Listing
Airbnb makes it extremely easy to create a listing for your home or spare room. Following the prompts, Airbnb will walk you through all of the processes of accurately listing your home. Airbnb even suggests pricing based on location, amenities, and seasons. Ultimately, you will get to decide the price of your listing, but you can adjust it at any time. You are also tasked with filling in the dates that your room is available - always, only on certain dates, or just for a one-time event. The calendar is always adjustable and you should update it as often as you can.
3) Describe the Room
Being as accurate and detailed as you can go a long way in your listing. This is what will help your potential guests decide to stay in your space versus another - so remember to include all of the details. Give readers an overview of the vibe of your home and neighborhood so they can decide whether or not this is a place they want to stay. Mention nearby food options, shopping, and other popular attractions. Mention whether it's near public transportation, shuttles, parking, or rideshare options. Another must-do: list any pets for guests who may have major allergies.
Accuracy is key in getting great reviews, which in turn brings you more guests. Be upfront and address any potential issues in your description. If you really want your description to pop and earn that "Superhost" status, honesty will go a long way.
Consider investing in a few items that are great perks for travelers, such as cable, internet, towels, free coffee or tea, and basic toiletries. Listing a few extra goodies may be just the tipping point for someone trying to decide on a room to rent.
4) Use Quality Photos
Photos will ultimately be the best part of your listing. Thoroughly clean your home and declutter any surface or overstuffed shelves before shooting your photos. Use as much natural light as possible and get as many full shots as you can - stand in doorways, hop on a stool, take a panoramic shot, and so on. Giving a full view of the space is much better than a photo of a particular item or wall. Also, consider taking a few neighborhood shots so that guests can get an idea of the area your home is in. Don't forget to add descriptions to each photo!
When you've finished these steps - you've created a listing on Airbnb! If you're honest in your description and provide a great experience, you'll be well on your way to becoming a "Superhost." Remember to check all local zoning laws before placing a listing on Airbnb to avoid fines. Good luck and happy hosting!
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