Our Experience as Hosts on Airbnb
One of the many ways we have been saving for our traveling has been hosting our spare room on Airbnb.
We were very fortunate to have been able to buy a flat back in June 2015, although after this point our savings were completely diminished and we not only owed the bank a sizeable amount of money but we had to borrow money from my parents. After having some good experiences with airbnb while traveling around, we decided that this could be a great way to save up some money to pay back the debt to my parents.
At first I was a little nervous having strangers come and stay in our place, this was foreign ground for me so something I needed to think about.
Being a professional property photographer I was able to capture some high quality images of our apartment to use in our listing.
Check out our Airbnb photos
Our first experience came as a whole apartment listing this was during our time spent in Israel. We managed to meet the first guest and had a nice chat with him which helped put our minds at ease considering we were about to leave our home in his hands. During our time away we had a few guests stay, there were no issues and when we arrived home everything was kind of fine. We were missing some towels and some plates but other than that we still had our Tv, nothing was burnt down and no holes in the walls. So all was good but the next stage was having guests stay with us while we were here.
For first guests in our private room we had a couple that were very lovely, not only did we have some deep conversations about religion, (Christian lady married to a Muslim man) but they even took us out for dinner in town as a thank you. We were a lot more careful with everything making sure the apartment was immaculate at all times during their stay and letting them use the living room privately. So as a first experience this was pretty good but not all experiences were all like this.
Jump forward to April 2017, we have now been hosts for 20 months and we have 5 stars with 97 reviews on our private room. We have had a new kitchen put in and new bath along with decorating some parts of the apartment. Airbnb has enabled us to save money and we have been able to pay quite a lot of our debt off to my parents. The money each month does vary so we can’t fully rely on it being a constant reliable flow of cash but we both have full time jobs so the money we do earn from our private room helps us save that little extra each month. There can be months where we earn less and we hardly have anyone, but then this gives us a short refreshing break from having people over.
We have come to realise that most people just want to use the bedroom and bathroom, so we are still able to have the living room as a room to ourselves even though we list it as a shared room. We have calmed down a little bit, we don’t go over board with keeping all the common spaces super clean at all times, of course we make sure it is clean.
We have had some interesting moments with guests staying here, but most of the time the guests have been really nice.
We have had gifts like flowers, chocolates and left over items that they didn’t want anymore, people cooking for us and joining us for dinner for a little chat. We have had some shocks where we had a Costa Rican couple leaving all their used toilet paper in the bin… Not a nice smell to be hit with. Lots of cleaning and washing which can be a pain when you just want to come home after work and chill out. Many awkward conversations but equally lots of interesting ones where we have been able to find out about people from all over the world. We have been able to learn from the guests, from their experiences and cultures but also learn how to communicate with different people and to be able to adjust to a variety of situations.
We have had guests from every continent and shared food, chats and even gone out together. It has opened our door quite literally to the world. So if you have a spare room and don’t mind sharing your fridge with a complete stranger then we recommend becoming a host on airbnb.
How to become a host
All you need to do is sign up on airbnb (you can use our referral links) list your space and where it is located.
Take some amazing photographs to show off your space, write up your description of the room or entire place and make sure to include all your amenities. Try to be detailed in explaining what is available and make sure to list any issues that the space may have such as noise for example located near a busy road or train line. This makes sure the guests are prepared for these issues and ensuring that you don’t get bad reviews as you have clearly listed these potential issues from the start.
You then list your available dates on an easy to use calendar, where you are able to open and close dates to your needs and sort out your price, which can vary on certain dates. You also have the option of turning instant booking on where guests can book without messaging you or to have it turned off where guests will have to seek approval from you first.
Simple and easy to sort out and then all you need to do is wait for bookings and remember to be prompt at replying to guests to keep up a good response rate.
So if you have the urge to sign up and host a room or an entire place then please use our referral link to host. BECOME A HOST
Or if you are thinking of using airbnb as a guest please use our referral link. SIGN UP AS A GUEST
Here are some of our reviews from airbnb