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A list of tactics for Airbnb hosts to make more money through the online rental platform.

Make More Money on Airbnb: 5 Major Ways Airbnb Hosts Can Boost Profits [COVID]

It’s a tricky time to be an Airbnb host.

The coronavirus pandemic has taken a serious bite out of most hosts’ profit margins. Here’s a bit of good news though: Domestic vacation rentals have seen an uptick.

Another ray of sunshine through the clouds is that the online rental platform has beefed up its rules for cleaning. They know guests and hosts are concerned about public health (we’re still in a pandemic after all) and they’re taking action to prevent further infections.

While bookings have flagged, lots of hosts are looking to recoup losses and find new ways to make some extra cash on the platform. Here are a few ways that Airbnb hosts can boost those profits even in a challenging market.

  1. Start by tackling the cost of Airbnb hosting

As an Airbnb host, your two main cost drivers are likely cleaning fees and utilities. 

Sure, if you live in your Airbnb rental as well, you’re paying for this stuff for your own use anyway. Either way, these sorts of costs can add up and chip away at your profit margins.

How can you avoid such a fate?

Purchase household supplies in bulk to drive down unit costs—stuff like shampoo and toilet paper. Those essentials will chip away at your profit margins. 

Ask your cleaner if they can supply such items as part of their cleaning service. Have them re-stock you every time they turnover your rental if they’re willing and able.

On the topic of your cleaning service, see if you can strike a deal with them to lower your cleaning costs. You can even ask different vendors to compete on price, particularly if you manage a few rentals and can bundle multiple properties under a single contract.

When it comes to your cleaning fee on Airbnb, set it high enough that it discourages shorter stays to make sure those cleaning dollars go further (assuming you’re looking for longer stays of course). Doing so can bring down the cost of turning over the rental as well as the need for supplies.

Lastly, get a handle on those utility costs. Consider upgrading appliances and your overall infrastructure (if you own the property) to save on things like HVAC and energy costs. Rentals with a modern feel tend to be more appealing to guests as well.

  1. Try Airbnb co-hosting

This option works two ways. 

If you’re short on time, you can hire a local co-host to manage your rental. If you’ve got some spare time and want to make some extra dough, you can be a co-host yourself. 

Either way, you’re growing your income by giving yourself more time (to earn elsewhere) or more cash in-hand.

This is a great new approach to hosting that used to be frowned upon within the Airbnb community but has now been enshrined as normal practice.

  1. Improve your status to Airbnb superhost

Think about your experience as a guest.

You love it when hosts are responsive, when they help you solve problems quickly and effectively, and when they take a little extra care in setting up a great space.

These are the hallmarks of a superhost—and superhosts tend to make more money on the platform. 

For example, investing in a modern keypad so that guests don’t have to worry about searching around for keys or timing their arrival makes a big difference in the quality of the stay. Taking the time to provide thoughtful touches around the rental as well as local guidance can really enrich the experience for guests.

Bottomline: Superhosting will earn you more cash on Airbnb. Get on that level if you want to bring in more cash on the platform.

  1. Live in your Airbnb rental

Actually living in one of your more expensive rentals can save you lots of money.

Here’s how it works: If you’re purchasing a new property and plan to make that property your primary residence, you can qualify for much more favorable loan terms (as low as 3.5% through FHA) than standard mortgages (15-20% down payment).

You can still rent out the other rooms in the house or even your own space when you’re out of town. Think of those mortgage cost savings as more money in your pocket upfront because that’s exactly what it is!

If you’re open to sharing space with guests, this is a solid way to reduce the initial costs of setting up an Airbnb rental.

  1. Offer storage space instead of living space

What if you used your Airbnb rental to store stuff instead of housing humans?

Say you’ve got a rental with some outdoor space in Tampa, Florida. Lots of people in Tampa need places to store their boats but docking and storage fees can be expensive. Why not offer a driveway or backyard for safe boat storage?

Put that extra space to good use.

Lots of boat owners would appreciate the lower cost and another set of eyes watching out for the safety and security of their nautical toys.

Also consider the storage space within the rental itself as potential renters might be looking for alternatives to expensive storage facilities and would happily pay for some square footage in your attic or basement.

It’s all about making the most of the space you’ve got available to bring in those extra bucks.

Paul Perry is a freelance writer for Neighbor, a peer-to-peer marketplace for storage. A world traveler and a self-made pizza connoisseur, he covers business as well as consumer interest from strategy to education.

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