Getting your home ready for Airbnb guests

Maybe you have a spare bedroom, a guest cabin or even a swanky decorated shed, and you want to make some cash. Today that means listing your abode on Airbnb and housing total strangers for a few nights. But it’s not that easy to get a lot of guests. For a successful profile, you’ll need a nicely decorated space and some marketing skills. Not sure if your home is up to snuff? Read on.

Start with decor 
Your Airbnb space doesn’t have to be straight out of a decorating magazine. It does, however, need some style. When people looking to find a place to stay browse through all the available listings, they look for something unique. This means your home can have an edge if you decorate it with some thought. From themed homes like ritzy Victorians to Prince shrines and 80’s houses, these extreme examples attract a certain crowd. To keep it simple, though, just make sure your home is clean and cozy. You need a comfortable bed, a nightstand, and potentially a small desk and chair your guests may use during their stay.

Make marketing moves 
You may have a great home, but without the right marketing you won’t have many guests. To start with, give your place a creative name. “Condo on the Cliff” is catchy and uses alliteration to stick in potential visitors’ minds. Yours could be creative like the “Mod Squad” if your home is modern, or “Comfy, Cozy Chic” for a homey abode.

Next, take pictures. Make sure any personal items are out of sight, like bills and mail, groceries or pets. Take shots from several angles to capture the room where your guests will stay and any other areas they will have access to in your home. You don’t need a professional camera if you can take clear photos with your smartphone.

Then, make your listing. Input your fun listing name plus all pertinent information such as if there is an en suite bath, whether there is a separate entrance and if guests or visiting pets are allowed. The Airbnb website will walk you through all of this so you don’t have to think of everything on your own.

Get personal
Once you’ve received a booking for someone to stay, personalize the space. Place a chalkboard on the door saying, “Welcome, (name)!” Add a delicious piece of chocolate to the nightstand and some hotel-sized toiletries to the bathroom. Stock up on touristy information pamphlets about the surrounding area and leave them in the bedroom area. Also, write down your WiFi name and password somewhere visible so your guests can easily find it. Some visitors will barely see you or interact, and they need to be self-sufficient. Others may want to chat and get to know you and the area. Prepare to enjoy making a little money off of your extra space all while meeting new people and showing off your lovely home.

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