Using Airbnb To Rent Your Home
Many homeowners still may not fully realize that they can use Airbnb to host guests and generate revenue. All it takes is part or all of your home if you can spare it — some people have even rented out treehouses and castles! The idea is basically to rent out the space on a short-term basis, and the ways you can work your hosting experience can vary, as long as you follow Airbnb’s community standards.
You can set custom prices depending on how you want to host, including seasons, weekends, weeknights or more. You are in control of the schedule. You can also provide weekly and monthly discounts for guests who are looking to stay a little longer.
What you charge is ultimately up to you, but you can require additional upfront fees for services like house cleaning. You can also provide services such as equipment or a local tour, among other things.
There are three steps to initiating the Airbnb renting process:
- List your space for free — no signup charges. Your space can be anything from a shared living room to a second home.
- Decide how you want to host — you may choose your own schedule, prices and requirements for guests.
- Wait for response — once your listing is posted, you wait for the response from qualified guests. You can also message them with any questions along the way.
Concerns about trust
Airbnb allows you to set strict requirements for who can book and to get to know guests before their stay.
- Host Guarantee covering property damage and Host Protection Insurance for liability allows you to be supported as a host throughout.
- Read reviews about guests and their past stays.
- 24/7 global support
- You can require government ID before booking.
- No cost to sign up for Airbnb
- You can charge your guests whatever you want, but Airbnb offers tools to help you match demand in your area.
- Airbnb generally charges 3% per reservation.
- Airbnb can pay you as soon as a guest checks in, via Paypal, direct deposit, or other available methods.
Taxes have been a concern regarding how it specifically relates to Airbnb hosts. They vary, so you will definitely want to check with your local government about what the tax situation requires.
No matter what your own tax obligation, it’s important that you inform your guests of the exact amount of tax required they will be charged prior to the booking.
Also, in some locations, Value Added Tax (VAT) may apply. Learn about VAT
Pandemic-related health and cleanliness
Global information about Airbnb’s enhanced cleaning protocol can be found in general info about hosting places to stay.
Key recommendations on cleaning
- Recommendations on waiting to enter the space before cleaning and disinfection from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- An explanation on how to read chemical labels from the US Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
- For cleaning and disinfection guidelines, interim recommendations from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- For US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) guidance on COVID-19, the key EPA resources on the coronavirus disease
Hosting your home comes with responsibility. Here are some tips:
- Stay with Airbnb throughout the booking. Keep to on an official record about bookings, payments, or incidents that may occur.
- Trust your gut. If a booking seems strange or shady, don’t accept it.
- Make sure you’re insured. Airbnb’s Host Protection Insurance program provides primary liability coverage for up to $1,000,000 USD per occurrence in the event of a third-party claim of bodily injury or property damage related to an Airbnb stay.
- You may also want to talk to your insurance provider about adding an extra layer of protection with your own renters or homeowner’s insurance.
Airbnb offers many advantages for homeowners to generate extra revenue, including free listings, setting your own prices, protections for guests and hosts. However, keep in mind that Airbnb is not legal everywhere, and inviting unfamiliar guests to your home always carries a degree of risk.