How to Be an Airbnb Host: 14 Tips for Fast Success

Real estate investing and property management aren't “rocket surgery,” as my ex-girlfriend used to say. 

But as you research how to become a host for Airbnb, you quickly realize that throwing up a listing with a few photos snapped with your smartphone won't land you huge returns. 

Run the Numbers

“Before you become an Airbnb host, calculate whether the additional effort is worth the money, compared to what you could earn if you rented out the same space on a long-term lease.” 

Price Against Hotels, Not Other Rentals

“Your competition is made up of nearby hotels. Look at comparable hotels' nightly rates, and then try to beat them by 15-25%.” 

Know Your Local Laws

For example, one study found that half of the Airbnb listings in New York City are illegal. San Francisco only allows people to list Airbnb units if they live in the property themselves at least 275 days per year on the other side of the country. 

Approach Short-Term Rentals as a Complete Hospitality Business

“Short-term landlords who approach it as a business can virtually eliminate vacancies, while those who just think of themselves as Airbnb hosts will wonder why their vacancy rate is so high.” 

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