how to start an airbnb - The staying power of Airbnb

In 2007, two friends named Joe and Brian were faced with the day that many city dwellers dread- rent day. The young entrepreneurs considered how they could top up their income in order to meet their rent demands for that month. The pair realised that a design conference in their San Francisco neighbourhood presented them with a unique opportunity to do exactly that- all with the added benefit of connecting with new people. With limited accommodation options for the conference goers in the area, Joe and Brian laid out an air mattress on their loft floor, offered it to their first guests (who paid $80 each) and never looked back! Joe Gebbia, Brian Chesky and Nathan Blecharczyk are now well known names in the business world as the founders of Airbnb, a company worth $31 billion today. 

What is Airbnb?

Airbnb is a rental platform which allows hosts to list their space and offer unique accommodation to guests anywhere in the world. Airbnb connects the ever-growing global travel community.  It has transformed the way that conference goers, holiday makers, professionals and even those who are moving house book accommodation. It embodies a truly diverse market for a truly diverse world. 

As the success of Airbnb has grown, so too has the standard of its properties. Today, their property portfolio hosts many luxury options. In this respect, it can be a competitive market to break into. As a property management company based in London, we have extensive experience and advice about how best to approach setting up an Airbnb and how to maximise the value out of your listing. Read on for our tips and advice on how to set up, manage and enjoy your space: 

Why use Airbnb?

Airbnb has the hallmarks of a great business model as it centres around usability, affordability and quality.  The platform is convenient for hosts as it offers flexibility around your calendar. You can block out periods of time to enjoy your own space and decide when to rent it out on your own terms. Unlike other rental platforms, you are not tied in to a traditional and inflexible contract. This is mutually beneficial for guests, as they can also choose short, medium and longer term rentals to suit them. When it comes to money, Airnb can provide you with a high income stream and due to its transparent pricing structure, you know how and when you are earning.

Sounds great! How do I set up an Airbnb?

Before setting up an account and becoming a host there are a few things to consider.

Airbnb asks hosts to: be responsive, accept reservation requests, avoid cancellations and maintain a high overall rating. Importantly, guests depend on reviews of properties when deciding to book a stay. As well as ratings and reviews, a host’s profile provides essential information to the potential guest such as what amenities may be on offer and whether they’ll be on-site during the stay. It’s essential to get this section of your profile right, as this is the guests ‘go-to’ when deciding to book with you.

Setting up an Airbnb account is free and virtually anybody can be a host. The platform requires creating an account, listing your location, your accommodation type and the amenities you offer alongside your availability and pricing.

Here are some tips when setting up your Airbnb:

  • Use appealing language when creating your listing. It’s crucial to make an excellent first impression and maintain a high ranking presence. 
  • Take professional photographs of your space. High quality photographs are essential at showing potential visitors how stunning your property is.
  • Communicate with your guests regularly, answering any queries that they may have. This is not only important in helping the guest to enjoy their stay but it also encourages them to leave a glowing review of your property and their overall experience.
  • Provide maintenance support for any issues that may arise during a guest's occupancy. 
  • Meet and greet your guests for key transfer with a warm welcome or use a safe key box. 

One of the most important aspects in being a successful Airbnb host is the ongoing management of the property. As mentioned above, reviews inform future guests about what they can expect from their stay at your property. The innovative thinking behind Airbnb is that it connects people as well as places.  At StayinLondon, we also believe in taking a people focused approach.  

Our comprehensive and high quality property management service allows property owners to enjoy the benefits of an Airbnb rental without the stress of everyday management. Our small and dedicated in-house team works around the clock to provide a white-glove service to guests to ensure that they enjoy a relaxing and comfortable stay. 

Some of the services we provide include:

  • Our in-house copywriter will write an engaging listing for you, ensuring that  the words convey how wonderful your home truly is.
  • Our photographer will capture the beautiful details of your home, allowing guests to see the clean, comfortable and inviting stay that awaits them. 
  • Dainius, Ivan and Ruta will personally manage your reservations and communicate with guests on your behalf, allowing hosts to have a stress free experience. 
  • We will meet and greet your guests, providing them with the key and a warm welcome to London.
  • Our housekeeping team will thoroughly clean your property on the day of guest departure and our linen rental partner will collect used linen and deliver a fresh set, including towels. This fee is paid for by the guest, so there is no additional cost to you. 
  • We will carefully inspect your property upon checkout to confirm that everything is in working order.
  • We will manage the maintenance service and upkeep of the property.
  • We have 24/7 concierge service should your guests need to get in touch with us about anything at any time. 
  • We will provide access to an online landlord dashboard with revenue/expense/ occupancy details so you have clarity about how your property is being managed. 
  • We partner with a specialist landlord  insurance company so you only pay for the days your property is occupied. 
  • We will maximise your revenue by adding medium-term bookings and avoiding any empty periods. 

Crucially, hospitality is the key quality of any successful Airbnb host and this aspect should not be overlooked in the rental process. Renters are looking for more than just a place to stay, they are looking for a place to stay with them. As we know London like the back of our hands, we can recommend the best restaurants and local amenities to your property. We can also provide guests with information about the rich cultural and historical wonders that surround your home. Including a personal touch to your service will ensure that guests leave positive reviews and recommend you as a host.

Importantly, we can also offer our time, knowledge and expertise to hosts. If you do choose to work with us, we provide hosts with peace of mind as they know their property is in safe and capable hands at all hours of the day. If you’re not in town, that’s not a problem. We also offer our services to international clients who appreciate our consistently high standards. If you’re interested in hosting on Airbnb and you’re not sure where to begin, get in touch and we can help you to get started! 

How much can your home make?

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Two women working in an office