Last Updated on April 1, 2023 by lindseymahoney
Have you ever considered renting a property through Airbnb? If the answer is yes, keep scrolling to learn 10 useful Airbnb hosting tips from successful and experienced Superhosts.
What is an Airbnb Superhost?
According to Airbnb, a Superhost is someone who goes above and beyond in their hosting duties and is a shining example of how a Host should be.
To qualify, property hosts must meet the following criteria:
- Completed at least 10 trips or 3 reservations that total at least 100 nights
- Maintain a 90%+ response rate
- Less than 1% cancellation rate (unless there are extenuating circumstances)
- Maintain a 4.8 overall rating
Once you hit the Airbnb Superhost qualifications, they will automatically award you with the Superhost badge on your property listing.
Meet Two Superhost Couples
First, let’s meet the two Airbnb Superhost couples who are sharing their top tips for hosting short-term rentals.
Meet the Nestrs! Sarah and Nick Karakaian own multiple Airbnb rentals in Columbus, Ohio. These two are experts in the short-term rental arena, they even host a podcast and offer consultation services for new Airbnb hosts.
Their Airbnb journey began all the way back in 2013 while Sara and Nick were living in NYC. A friend asked Sarah if she could help him out and change the bed linens at his apartment to prepare for an Airbnb guest.
Sarah was happy to help and changed the bed linens, fluffed the pillows, and even added a bottle of water and a sweet treat next to the bed.
Not only did the guests love it, but Sarah loved using her hospitality skills to welcome guests. She also realized that they too could become Airbnb hosts and offer their basement on-suite to renters.
Sonny & Chelsea
Chelsey and Sonny own a duplex in the German Village in Columbus, Ohio. They live on one side of the duplex and rent the other side on Airbnb as a short-term rental.
Their rental is consistently booked and has proven to be a highly profitable business for them.
Their neighbor told them about his experience renting out a single room through Airbnb and encouraged them to consider this option with the duplex.
Although their original plan was to use it as a long-term rental, they decided to try out the Airbnb space and quickly realized that their profits doubled by renting it as a short-term rental.
Top 10 Airbnb Hosting Tips to Maximize Profits and Create Loyal Customers
These two Airbnb Superhost couples have fantastic hosting tips for all short-term rental owners to consider when managing their properties.
Let’s get started!
1 | Utilize the Instant Booking Features
Don’t be scared!
The sharing economy is no longer new or taboo. Airbnb is pretty widely accepted now and there are so many ways to get started and work within your own comfort level.
Airbnb offers lots of options to ease into the short-term rental business. When booking guests, one option is the ability to review and speak to every guest before accepting their request.
Another option is the instant booking feature where books can automatically book their stay without your approval.
If you have a long term rental that you are struggling to rent out or if you have extra space and want to get some extra cash flow, Airbnb is a great place to try out.
2 | Maximize Profits with Price Management Apps
There are a few ways to set Airbnb rental pricing within your area and the Nesters are currently using a program called Beyond Pricing. This pricing program uses similar tech that hotel search engines use when you want to find the best price on lodging.
In larger cities like Columbus Ohio utilizing a program like this can save you a ton of time and money. The cost of this service is 1% of your Airbnb income each month.
Airbnb also offers a smart pricing service but Sarah does not recommend using it. Sarah and Nick’s goal is to maximize profits at their short-term rental properties.
With the smart pricing tool, Sarah believes Airbnb’s goal is to get your property fully rented. While it is great to have a calendar filled with bookings, this strategy can underprice your property to get it fully rented.
3 | Don’t Shoot for 100% Occupancy
Sarah believes that 80% occupancy each month is the sweet spot for a great rental.
If your occupancy is above 80% you are usually not charging enough, and if you have less than 70% occupancy each month you are probably priced too high.
4 | Include Guest Amenities That Exceed Expectations
Sarah and Nick go above and beyond with amenities for their guests. One amenity they always include is a basket of easily forgotten traveling items – toothbrushes, floss, sunscreen, etc.
These small gestures help set them apart from their competition and create loyal customers.
5 | Create a Unique Experience for Guests
Sarah loves the hosting aspect of owning an Airbnb and really enjoys the business side of managing a mini bed and breakfast.
She puts a lot of time and effort into the design and holds her cleaners to high standards. It is important to care about your furnishings and anticipate your guest’s needs.
6 | Be Flexible with Rates to Maximize Profits
Because Sonny and Chelsea live next door to their short-term rental, they fully manage the pricing and turnover of guests. This means that they clean the unit between guest visits and handle all guest questions during their stay.
They are always trying to strike a balance between fully occupied and competitive rates (which can sometimes bring undesired clientele).
When they first listed their unit on Airbnb, they searched other rentals within the area and tested various rates to find their sweet spot for their average booking price.
Because this is their only short-term rental, they are more flexible on rates when there are random dates that went unbooked. When this happens they will often lower the rate to try and entice visitors to book with them.
Similarly to the Nestrs, Sonny and Chelsey do not recommend the smart pricing tool offered by Airbnb.
With the location, amenities, and high-end furnishings in their rental, they feel that the smart pricing tool often undercuts their profits. The prefer to manage the rates manually to achieve top dollar.
7 | Airbnb Location Matters
It’s not a surprise that locations that are tourist destinations or host lots of visitors throughout the year will be more desirable for Airbnb rentals.
These Airbnb units are located in the Historic German Village in the heart of downtown Columbus, Ohio.
These Airbnb locations have close proximity to downtown and are located near many wedding venues. Historic German Village also offers lots of shops within walking distance that appeals to many guests.
8 | Market Your Airbnb With Great Photos
Having an updated space with a modern design helps to set their rental apart from the competition.
Highlighting these features with beautiful photos is incredibly important!
Chelsey also believes it is important to show photos of the exterior of the home. People want to know what they are getting and it is best to avoid any surprises (unless they are good ones!).
9 | Complimentary Snacks
Sonny and Chelsey love to pamper their guests with comfortable pillows and fluffy towels.
They provide all of the comforts you need and go the extra mile by offering a variety of snacks.
10 | Run Your Business with Integrity
Keep the space clean and be respectful to all of the guests you host.
The more Airbnb hosts that run their business with integrity, the more it will help the community. You are giving people an experience and a taste of your neighborhood and it’s important to take that seriously.
Sonny and Chelsey are more involved in community legislation and local government as a result of becoming Airbnb hosts.
When Columbus was looking to pass strict regulations on Airbnb hosts, they became involved in city council hearings and wrote letters to legislators.
Sarah also became more involved with this issue and even spoke at the hearing. Luckily the strict regulations didn’t pass and they are able to continue offering these great spaces to visitors.
I want to give a special thank you to both of these super hosts for sharing all of your knowledge! I hope these useful Airbnb hosting tips will help you maximize profits with your short-term rental properties.
Long-term vs. Short-term Rental Profit Potential
Sarah and Nick currently own a one bedroom apartment in Columbus Ohio. It is clean and is staged with updated furniture, but the apartment has not been updated in probably 40 years.
For a long-term rental, this apartment would probably rent at $850/$900 a month. The benefit of a long-term rental is that they generally require less work because a tenant would sign a one year lease.
Listing this same property as a short-term rental on Airbnb, the Nesters can more than double the income of a long term rental. Managing a short-term rental requires some more work and management, but may be worth it if you are looking to maximize profits.
On average, they charge $80/night, but it can go as high as $119/night for big events like football games.
On the low end, this apartment as a short-term rental brings in $1,700/month.
When big events are in town, they can increase their nightly rates and make as much as $3,000/month!
Once the kitchen and bathroom are renovated, they can increase the rate to $100/night.
By hosting this apartment on Airbnb, Sarah and Nick can increase their profit by $2,000 every month!