Tips for a simple hosting routine
One of the most common questions from folks considering Airbnb hosting is, “How much work is it going to be?” While some hosts gain deep satisfaction from personally handling every aspect of their Airbnb business—from managing bookings to greeting guests to putting personal touches in their space—many others prefer to enlist help to minimize effort and maximize enjoyment. Here, hosts share their top tips for keeping it simple.
Keeping your space clean
If you’re hosting regularly, the constant routine of turning your space over in between guests can become tiring. Some hosts recommend hiring a cleaning service to make sure you’re always covered. You can add a cleaning fee to your listing to offset the costs of professional help.
Host John from Westcliffe, Colorado, says he makes sure to hire cleaners willing to stay in close communication. “With our cleaning staff, we share a Google Calendar where we keep track of check-ins and checkouts and cleaning dates,” he says. “I rely on them to let me know if anything is out of place, missing, or if any supplies need to be refilled.”
Organizing a smooth check-in
Hosts Henry and Chris from Cleveland aren’t always around when their guests are, so they use a variety of tactics to make it simple for their guests to check in. “If we’re home, we offer to show guests around, but most people just do a self check-in,” Henry says. Airbnb’s self check-in feature allows them to provide guests with instructions for accessing the space. They’ve also equipped the front door with a smart lock—a keyless entry system that lets guests check in using a unique code that can be changed remotely for each visit.
Once guests have checked in, they typically settle in by looking around and making sure they understand where to find things they need—and how they work (like how to use the TV). Many hosts use Airbnb’s house manual feature to provide guests with information unique to their home.
To help guests experience your area like a local, it’s also a great idea to provide your recommendations for sights to see and places to eat. You can make this information available right in the Airbnb app by using the guidebook feature to create a custom guide to your favorite spots.
Being available, even when you’re away
Mobile devices make it possible to connect with guests at a moment’s notice from anywhere in the world. Many hosts do this directly in Airbnb messages—and additionally share a phone number for text messaging—to address any issues that might arise. “I make myself available to answer questions immediately,” Chris says. “When guests want to plunk down and relax, things should work right the first time. And 99.9% of the time they do, but if something ever needs fixing, we address it immediately.”
A little help from your friends
Many hosts lighten the load by sharing responsibilities with a property manager or co-host. Host management services are third-party companies that assist with hosting responsibilities like key exchanges, cleanings, and listing management. A co-host can be a trusted friend, roommate, spouse, or professional property manager.
You can decide together on how to divide responsibilities and how to arrange payment. (It could be a good idea to create a contract to ensure both parties are on the same page about responsibilities and compensation.) Airbnb’s co-hosting feature allows you to link another user profile with your listing, which avoids sharing your login credentials.
Creating a routine
Once you get the hang of hosting, it’s a good idea to create a routine you can replicate for each new booking. Keep track of how many hours you spend on tasks like communicating with guests and preparing your space, then find ways to streamline the ones you enjoy less and make more time for what you love. One great timesaver is Airbnb’s saved messages feature, which allows you to save and reuse answers to common guest questions.
Buying supplies in bulk can save time and money, too. Consider having items you replace often—for instance, essential amenities like toilet paper and hand soap—delivered regularly to your door through an Amazon subscription.
These are just a few ways to simplify your hosting routine. So much of what works will depend on your lifestyle and listing. Give it some time—and a little trial and error—and you’re sure to discover the best approach for you.