How to Operate an Airbnb in a City You Don’t Live in

How to Operate an Airbnb in a City You Don’t Live in
Airbnb Advice
March 27, 2019

Profit on Airbnb, just like all businesses in the short-term accommodation sector, is usually subject to location. There are always hotspots that are more popular with tourists and these are the areas that will attract and generate the most revenue for hosts. Taking New Zealand, for example, the most profitable areas for Airbnb hosts are in major cities like Auckland, Wellington and Queenstown. This is due to the high volumes of guests throughout the calendar year, the higher nightly-rates, and the potential for strong growth to continue.

While operating an Airbnb in a city you live in does have its advantages, it isn’t the only option out there. While you may be based in Auckland, this doesn’t mean you aren’t able to explore short-term rental investment options in this location. Much as traditional tenancies are able to be operated remotely, so too is Airbnb, when the right steps are taken.

Running an Airbnb from a distance can be a straightforward and rewarding endeavour. With the proper care, this can be a way to turn a property investment into passive income, allowing you to enjoy the benefits of hosting without the day-to-day struggle of managing it. In fact, by choosing the appropriate location to set-up an Airbnb, this method of property investment can even generate positive cash flow and capital growth in the long-term.

With the benefits of Airbnb hosting in select locations clear, here’s how property investors can operate an Airbnb in a city they aren’t living in:

Consider a Reliable Co-Host

One of the easiest ways to host on Airbnb remotely is to enlist in the help of a close friend or family member that lives near to your property. Co-hosts are actually encouraged by Airbnb and they have a system that allows you to add them to your profile to ensure everything runs smoothly. Airbnb states that “Hosts and co-hosts agree on who's responsible for what, how much of the reservation income will go to the co-host, and how the co-host will be reimbursed for expenses”. This means that all agreements for payment and responsibilities lay internally. Decisions around these factors rest solely with the property owner.

Co-hosts are a common way for property owners to get into the short-term accommodation industry through Airbnb without having to manage their investment full-time. This method is generally seamless, with the only drawcard being that your co-host of choice may not have the experience to grow your listing like a professional might.

Create a Fool-Proof Guest Guide

Your guest guide or house manual is where you introduce your home to each guest you have. Here is where you’ll advise people about everything they need to know about your property. Things like WiFI information, pointers for navigating your home, information about how everything works and even local recommendations can be included. You’ll also want to include a contact point for emergency situations, to make sure everything is covered in the worst-case scenario.

A fool-proof guest guide will help you when operating an Airbnb remotely as it will greatly reduce the need for guest interactions and thus, ensure a seamless stay if you are not nearby. While it is always necessary to have someone a guest can get in touch with if they need something, a guest guide will help for all those little things that can suck up a lot of unnecessary time. The best thing is that guests appreciate them too, which will go towards securing your position as a great Airbnb host.

Streamline and Automate the Check-In Process

Check-in processes can sometimes be a tricky situation for beginner Airbnb hosts. It’s this area that can be the most trying as a remote host, but it doesn’t have to be. Self-check-ins are in fact the preferred option on Airbnb and many guests may just choose you if you offer this. Key exchange is possible even if you aren’t on location through the helpful assistance of a secure lock-box. These awesome gadgets allow the key to be held securely at the exterior of the property, removing the need to be there when a guest arrives. All you need to do as a host is provide a pin number and instructions on how to find the box, and guests will be able to check-in just fine on their own.

Find a Cleaning Company You Can Rely On

Cleaning and inspections between guests are some of the most important steps for Airbnb hosting. Relinquishing control of this task and relying on someone else can seem scary, however, there are many great professional cleaning companies out there and many of them are specialised for Airbnb. Utilising their services can help you to operate an Airbnb remotely, as you will no longer be required to assess the situation and clean-up after each guest.

Consider Using an Airbnb Management Company

An Airbnb property manager offers similar benefits as going with a co-host with the added bonus of having an Airbnb expert taking full control of your property. With a good Airbnb manager, you can expect your listing to be optimised, your guests to be cared for, responsibilities handled, and increased profitability as a result. Many people have turned to the benefits of an Airbnb property manager to host on the platform remotely and as a result, there are a number of different companies to choose from, all at the end of a Google search.

There are Many Ways to Host on Airbnb Remotely

Whether you are permanently based out of town or frequently travel for work, there’s no reason why this should keep you from exploring the lucrative Airbnb market. With a number of options out there for potential hosts, Airbnb offers a fantastic way of generating income from property as a hands-free investment. Considering these tips can help all hosts build a highly profitable Airbnb business in any city they are capable of owning property in.

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