Airbnb has removed over 100,000 listings in a drive for quality over quantity

businesswoman, presentation, men's suit

In a recent update shared during Airbnb’s “Spring Product Update,” the company unveiled its substantial efforts to prioritize quality and reliability across its platform. With a focus on enhancing the overall guest experience, Airbnb has removed a staggering 100,000 listings, marking the largest set of removals in the company’s history. This article explores the details surrounding this initiative and sheds light on Airbnb’s commitment to ensuring every guest enjoys a stellar stay.

Their Approach to Quality

According to Article 1, Airbnb’s determination of quality goes beyond a simple overall rating. The company employs a comprehensive approach, taking into account subcategory ratings, host cancellations, and quality-related community support issues. To better assess listings that fall short of community expectations, Airbnb launched an updated hosting quality system in April 2023.

The first three months following the implementation of the updated system saw the removal of 12,000 low-quality listings. Airbnb has since removed a staggering total of 100,000 listings that consistently failed to meet the community’s standards for a satisfactory guest experience. The commitment doesn’t stop there; Airbnb continues to evaluate every listing after each stay, ensuring ongoing quality assurance.

Education and Collaboration with Hosts

Before removing a listing, Airbnb engages in a collaborative effort with hosts, providing them with education, tips, and actionable feedback directly in their account dashboard. This proactive approach aims to empower hosts to enhance their guests’ experience and address potential issues before they escalate.

Verification and Guest Confidence


Airbnb is taking additional steps to boost guest confidence through its verification process. By the end of the month, nearly 1.5 million listings will have completed this process, featuring verification badges for enhanced transparency. The company is also introducing new tools, such as video and photo verification, to further authenticate listings and plans to expand listing verification to additional countries.


Airbnb is refining its “Guest Favorites” identification system, providing unique highlights for the top 25% of listings based on ratings, reviews, and reliability. The company is also expanding its integration with smart lock providers, emphasizing security and convenience for guests.

The Aim


Airbnb’s significant removal of 100,000 listings underscores its unwavering commitment to quality and reliability. By employing a holistic approach, collaborating with hosts, and introducing new verification processes, Airbnb aims to ensure every guest has a great stay. As the company continues to innovate and prioritize quality over quantity, guests can look forward to a more secure and enjoyable experience on the platform.

Airbnb’s Ban on Indoor Security Cameras

security, cctv, camera


In a significant policy shift, Airbnb has announced a ban on hosts using indoor security cameras starting April 30. The move comes as a response to concerns raised by guests about privacy invasion and hidden cameras in short-term rentals. This article explores the implications of this ban and its potential impact on both hosts and guests, delving into the reasoning behind Airbnb’s decision and the challenges it may face in enforcing the new rules.

The Evolution of Airbnb’s Surveillance Policies


Initially allowing hosts to install security cameras in common areas, Airbnb faced mounting issues as guests reported encountering hidden cameras in private spaces. The company’s prior policies required hosts to disclose the presence of cameras, make them visible, and refrain from placing them in sensitive areas like bedrooms and bathrooms. However, violations persisted, prompting Airbnb’s reconsideration of its surveillance regulations.


While the ban aims to prioritize guest privacy, hosts have used cameras to deter disruptive parties and protect their properties. The use of security cameras in common areas served as a tool for hosts to maintain control and security.

Airbnb’s Response and Rule Changes


Juniper Downs, Airbnb’s Head of Community Policy and Partnerships, emphasized that the rule changes were made in consultation with guests, hosts, and privacy experts. The new policy not only bans indoor security cameras but also introduces rules for outdoor cameras and noise decibel monitors. Airbnb seeks to strike a balance, allowing hosts to monitor their properties while respecting the privacy expectations of guests.

Challenges in Enforcement


Despite the new rules, challenges remain in enforcing the ban effectively. Airbnb plans to investigate reported violations and penalize hosts by removing listings or accounts. However, the company has already required hosts to disclose indoor cameras, and some guests still report hidden and undisclosed cameras. The effectiveness of this new policy will depend on Airbnb’s ability to address such challenges and adapt to emerging surveillance technologies.

Impacts on the Airbnb Community


With 7.7 million listings globally, Airbnb asserts that the majority do not have security cameras. This ban is expected to impact a relatively small subset of listings, striking a balance between guest privacy and host security concerns. As Airbnb continues to face regulatory scrutiny worldwide, this policy change aligns with broader efforts to enhance the quality of listings and address concerns about the platform’s impact on local communities.

Innovative Alternatives

As indoor security cameras are phased out, noise and occupancy monitoring solutions may come to the forefront. These systems offer features such as security alarms, sirens, and tamper detection, providing hosts with effective tools to prevent parties and address unruly behaviour without compromising guest privacy.

Advantages of Noise & Occupancy Monitoring

  1. Real-time Alerts: These systems can send real-time alerts directly to hosts’ mobile phones, allowing swift response to potential issues.
  2. Privacy-Focused: By eliminating the need for cameras, hosts can maintain guest privacy while still having tools to ensure property security.
  3. Tamper Detection: Advanced features like tamper detection enhance the effectiveness of these monitoring solutions, offering comprehensive protection.

Noise Decibel Solutions

Challenges and Considerations

While noise and occupancy monitoring present a promising alternative, hosts must carefully evaluate the specific needs of their property. Ensuring that these systems are installed in common areas and do not compromise guest privacy is essential. These devices must be disclosed in your listing and inform your guests of their locations. Striking the right balance between security measures and privacy considerations remains a challenge that hosts and technology providers must collectively address.


Airbnb’s ban on indoor security cameras reflects a proactive step toward safeguarding guest privacy. Striking a balance between hosts’ security concerns and guests’ right to privacy remains a challenge, but the new rules demonstrate Airbnb’s commitment to evolving its policies. As the platform seeks feedback and adapts to emerging issues, the ban marks a pivotal moment in shaping the future of short-term rentals and the delicate balance between security and privacy in the digital age.

EU Short-Term Rental Regulations

Flag of the European Union in front of the EU-Parliament in Brussels, Belgium


The European Parliament‘s recent vote on new EU-wide regulations for short-term rentals has marked a pivotal moment for the industry, bringing clarity and consistency to a landscape previously characterized by diverse and sometimes conflicting rules. Airbnb, a major player in the short-term rental market, has embraced these regulations, recognizing their potential to benefit hosts, authorities, and European tourism as a whole.

Airbnb’s Positive Response


Airbnb has welcomed the new regulations, emphasizing their commitment to working closely with Member States and local authorities for successful implementation. The rules aim to simplify data-sharing processes, providing a clear framework for platforms and authorities. The 24-month compliance period reflects a collaborative effort between Airbnb, the EU, and Member States to develop efficient and harmonized systems.

Impact on Short-Term Rental Hosts


The significance of short-term rental platforms, including Airbnb, in the European tourism landscape is undeniable. In 2022 alone, over 547 million nights were booked through major platforms, with Paris, Barcelona, Lisbon, and Rome leading in guest numbers. The regulations address challenges arising from the rapid growth of short-term rentals, emphasizing the need for transparency, compliance with local regulations, and the preservation of urban development.

Benefits for Short-Term Rental Hosts


The regulations aim to strike a balance between supporting the economic contributions of short-term rental hosts and addressing concerns related to housing availability. With nearly one-quarter of all EU tourist accommodation supply provided by short-term rental hosts, the regulations seek to empower hosts through a simplified registration process. This process will not only aid in monitoring host activities but also enhance user security by ensuring accurate property details.


For many hosts on Airbnb, the income generated is a crucial economic lifeline. Nearly half of EU hosts engage in short-term rentals to make ends meet, while others plan to use the income to cover rising living costs or finance home improvements. The regulations provide a framework for responsible hosting, acknowledging the diverse motivations behind short-term rentals.

Challenges and Solutions


The rise in short-term rentals has presented challenges such as the need for transparency, regulatory compliance, and addressing urban development concerns. The EU’s response involves a comprehensive approach, including a simple online registration process, enhanced security measures, and streamlined data sharing to assist local authorities in understanding and regulating rental activities.


As the EU short-term rental regulations move toward formal adoption, they represent a significant step forward in creating a balanced and sustainable ecosystem for hosts, platforms, and local authorities. Airbnb’s proactive stance and commitment to collaboration underscore the potential positive impact of these regulations on the short-term rental industry, fostering responsible hosting practices and contributing to the overall success of European tourism.

Airbnb vs VRBO, differences that all hosts should know in 2024

Brown wooden center table

Home-sharing describes the process of sharing a property — be it a portion or the entire property — with people looking for short-term stays in exchange for money. In the last decade, home-sharing has become more prevalent across the globe, with businesses like Airbnb and Vrbo (Vacation Rental By Owner) gaining popularity.

The short-term stay rental sector presents a lot of advantages for renters, one being offering flexibility and a myriad of options for those looking for alternative accommodation. There’s a lot to be said about Airbnb and Vrbo from a customer’s perspective, but have you ever wondered what the key differences are between the two should you decide to host on either platform? Knowing the key differences between both platforms will help you make an informed decision about which platform to host your property on to receive a better return on investment.

A brief background of Airbnb and Vrbo

Established in 2008, Airbnb seeks to facilitate connections between hosts and customers in search of short-term rental stays. Operating in over 200 countries, the company boasts a remarkable portfolio of over 7 million listings, showcasing an extensive and impressive global presence, especially beneficial for hosts aiming to tap into a broader customer base.

Conversely, Vrbo, founded in 1995, offers 2 million listings across 190 countries. While Vrbo may not match the expansive reach of Airbnb, its association with the HomeAway brand enhances its potential reach. Once your property is listed on Vrbo, it gains the opportunity to reach a wider audience as it is also featured on other home-sharing sites under the Vrbo/HomeAway umbrella.

The similarities and differences between Airbnb and Vrbo

The obvious similarity between Airbnb and Vrbo is that they both serve as additional accommodation options for guests, outside of the traditional route of booking directly at a hotel. Other similarities include that both platforms charge service fees and both have cancellation policies and offer customers an opportunity to review the property they stayed at. While this is so, the way in which each of these factors are run by Airbnb and Vrbo differ greatly.

Service fees

Hosts on both Airbnb and Vrbo are required to cover service fees, which are imposed to ensure the costs of products, services, and customer support are adequately addressed.

Airbnb charges hosts approximately 3% for each confirmed booking, with guests responsible for the remaining service fees, typically amounting to under 14% of the booking subtotal (excluding Airbnb fees and taxes). Airbnb hosts have the option to charge additional fees to guests, such as cleaning fees, as well as fees associated with extra guests and pets.

Vrbo offers hosts two fee structures. The first option allows hosts to pay a $499 annual subscription, while the second provides the choice of a 5% commission for each booking, accompanied by a 3% credit card processing fee. The subscription model proves more cost-effective for properties with a high volume of bookings per year.

Airbnb Costs and Fees Stats
VRBO and HomeAway Costs and Fees

Cancellation policies

Cancellation policies are put in place to protect the host by setting out penalties for guests for unexpected cancellations.

Airbnb offers strict, moderate, and flexible cancellation policies. The flexible cancellation policy allows guests to cancel at least 24-hours before check-in and still get their money back. Using this type of cancellation policy on your Airbnb listing can attract many guests, but you may lose out on revenue if guests cancel unexpectedly. Booking greater than 28 days (Long term bookings) have a slightly different setup in that guests can cancel as long as this is 28 days before the next check-in date.

Vrbo offers 5 different cancellation types: no refund, strict, firm, moderate and relaxed. The most lenient cancellation policy, which is relaxed, only allows guests to cancel at least 14-days before check-in for a full refund.

  • No Refund: No refund permitted.
  • Strict: Full refund if canceled 60 days before check-in; no refund after 60 days.
  • Firm: Full refund if canceled 60 days before check-in; 50% refund 30-60 days before check-in.
  • Moderate: Full refund if canceled 30 days before check-in; 50% refund 14-30 days before check-in.
  • Relaxed: Full refund if canceled 14 days before check-in; 50% refund 7-14 days before check-in.

Airbnb and Vrbo property types

Airbnb allows a variety of properties on its platform. For example, it’s very common to find houses, apartments, hotels, lodges, and even villas listed. Added to that, one can rent out a single room in a property on Airbnb. This provides flexibility for hosts as most types of property are allowed to be listed and for extra income, one can rent out different rooms in say, a house, to various guests.

Vrbo offers a diverse range of vacation rentals, allowing owners to list various properties such as cottages, bungalows, cabins, townhouses, villas, lodges, farmhouses, and more. Additionally, they provide the unique option to list boats, yachts, castles, and mills!

Types of guests

The types of guests you may expect from Airbnb and VRBO can vary based on the nature of the platforms. Airbnb tends to attract a more diverse range of travelers, including solo adventurers, couples, and groups seeking unique and local experiences. With its emphasis on shared spaces and a personalized touch, Airbnb often appeals to those looking for a more immersive stay. On the other hand, VRBO, or Vacation Rental By Owner, tends to draw families and larger groups seeking spacious and private accommodations such as entire homes, villas, or cabins. VRBO guests often prioritize comfort, convenience, and a home-like environment, making it a popular choice for family vacations or group getaways. Ultimately, both platforms cater to different preferences, offering hosts opportunities to accommodate a broad spectrum of guests.

Reviews on Airbnb and Vrbo

Guests on Airbnb have 14 days to leave a review after their stay. They can rate places based on cleanliness, communication, location, check-in, value for money, and whether the listing matched its description.

On Vrbo, both guests and hosts have one year to leave reviews. Each party can respond to their other’s review, but only within 14 days. Vrbo uses a 5-star rating system and its ability to allow hosts to respond helps other people get ‘both sides of the story’ instead of a myopic view of what it’s like to stay at an accommodation.

What platform is best for you?

Using both Airbnb and Vrbo can be beneficial as a host, particularly if you have a full-space accommodation that you’d like to be occupied. However, if you have an alternative space that you want to make extra income from and is close to urban areas, using Airbnb might be more suited for you. Ultimately, your choice in which platform to use will depend on how much service fees you can afford, what cancellation policy works best for you, the type of property you have, and the type of guests you’re looking to attract. If both match your criteria then use both to help maximise your bookings. If you’re using more than one provider then we suggest using a channel manager to help you manage listings, bookings and calendars.

Showcasing your property on Vrbo presents an excellent opportunity to boost visibility. Your listing won’t just appear on Vrbo; it will also feature on its affiliated platforms like HomeAway, Expedia, Trivago, and KAYAK, significantly expanding its reach. This increased exposure is likely to attract a higher number of guests, translating into enhanced profitability for you as a vacation rental homeowner.

The Best Airbnb’s for visiting US national parks

National Park

After the pandemic many people have been exploring a little closer to home, and it has shown us all that you do not have to travel halfway across the world to find unique places to visit!

If you are looking for a breath-taking holiday destination, with plenty of things to see and do… Have you considered one of the US’s national parks?

There are over 60 national parks across the US where you can hike, cycle, kayak and spot wildlife… as well as take in the fantastic scenery! There is definitely something for everyone, no matter which one you choose.

Here is a fun fact for you… did you know that national parks cover 84 million acres of space?

A nation Park is perfect for social distancing and adventure at the same time.  There are a number of self-guided tours that can be done in all of the national parks, that covers everything from plant species to archaeology.

To start off we recommend a visit to the main government national park website. Here you’ll find information regarding, staying safe, passes, visitor information, and rules.

If you’re looking for a vacation closer to home with a little bit of a difference, here are some of the best Airbnbs for visiting our favourite US National Parks!

Great Smoky Mountains National Park

forest, view, landscape

The most visited park in the United States, this park not only includes The Appalachian Trail and Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies but also Dollywood!

Here are two great Airbnbs near the Great Smoky Mountains to get you started:

A secluded cabin in the woods

Perfect for: a Romantic getaway

Cost: £979 a night

If you’re looking for a cosy retreat, this cabin is a gorgeous choice! Located in the heart of the mountains, this cabin comes with a cosy log fire, an outside swing built for two and a hot tub that is perfect for a soak under the stars!

The heart-shaped bath has to be seen to be believed!

Bryson City Walkabout

Perfect for: A quiet family retreat

Cost: £113 a night

This house sleeps six guests, making it an excellent choice for families. It has a stunning view of the Smoky Mountains. Reviewers love the cleanliness and the friendly accommodating host.

The next-door neighbour also has chickens and goats, making it an exciting place for children to stay!

Grand Canyon National Park

horseshoe bend, arizona, southwest

This iconic park is located in Arizona and is famous for its wildlife and stunning views. We recommend watching the sunrise and sunset here! The cannon is over a mile deep and up to 18 miles wide in some places. During the sunset, you can get beautiful views of the stunning layered bands of the rocks.

If you’re looking to plan a trip to see this fantastic park, here are two wonderful Airbnb ideas:

An apartment built for four

Perfect for: A family trip to the Grand Canyon

Cost: £119 a night

This hidden gem of an apartment is fully serviced, with gorgeous views of the Kaibab forest. It’s a fantastic starting point for those who want to check out the Grand Canyon, as well as local Flagstaff and Sedona.

Grand Canyon Resort Camper

Perfect for: Fans of glamping

Cost: £87 a night

Sleeping five guests, this RV is perfect for those who want to experience camping… with all of the mod cons!

The RV comes with a fully fitted kitchen, BBQ grill and a communal fire pit for relaxing with a drink at the end of a hard day’s exploring.

You can also bring along your pets for a small additional fee – with dog bags and treats supplied!

Rocky Mountain National Park

lake, landscape, mountains

The interesting thing about Rocky Mountain National Park is the change in environment. Some areas of the park are lush and green, while others are covered in snow. You can experience all of the seasons in a short weekend! This stunning park is over 415 square miles and projects spectacular mountains in all directions.

Want to visit the Rocky Mountains? Here are two great places to stay.

A peaceful forest retreat

Perfect for: A peaceful and relaxing holiday with loved ones

Cost: £75 a night

This wonderful woodland home is not only serene and calm but also is great for spotting wildlife… many reviewers commented on the friendly deers who like to poke their heads in the window to say hello!

Garden of the Gods home

Perfect for: Those wanting an active holiday full of walking and cycling

Cost: £94 a night

This cosy two-bedroom home is within walking distance of the trail, making it an excellent place for adventure-seekers! From deers walking around the streets to a fully stocked kitchen, this Airbnb has it all!

Yosemite National Park

yosemite, national park, california

The first national park that came into existence in the US, Yosemite National Park has a lot of breath-taking scenery including glaciers, waterfalls and cliffs.

If Yosemite sounds like the perfect choice, here are two amazing Airbnbs to stay in.

Snyder Ridge mountain getaway

Perfect for: Those looking for a rustic stay, with plenty of wildlife spotting

Cost: £67 a night

An hour’s drive away from Yosemite National Park, this private room in a cosy cabin guarantees you a fantastic night’s sleep!

Deers, raccoons and squirrels pass by the property regularly, and the owners also have a very friendly pet cat and dog.

Gorgeous deluxe apartment

Perfect for: Ski bunnies looking for a luxurious place to stay

Cost: £132 a night

Located in the Mammoth Lakes, this condo is not only near lots of stores, cafes and restaurants but has a bar, swimming pool, gym and locker for skiing!

Yosemite National Park is only a short drive away for when you want a change from the slopes and apres-ski.

Which Airbnb will you choose?

We are sure that this guide will give you lots of ideas as to which national park to cross off your bucket list next!

If you have your own RV or camping equipment, you can also hire premium camping space on Airbnb too. Imagine waking up to wildlife around you or going to sleep under the stars.

If you’d like to book into one of the fantastic venues on this list, why not join us on Airbnb? You can get up to £40 on a place to stay and £10 off an experience of your choice. You can put that money towards a sturdy pair of hiking boots or bike hire for a weekend.

Get saving on your very first Airbnb experience with our voucher codes.

Please note: All prices are based on one guest and are subject to change. Costs do not include cleaning, service fees and other charges.

Airbnb Message Templates to Help You Save Time

Responding to guests is an important part of the ecosystem. However, responding to all guests with unique messages can be time-consuming. However, if you want to become a  superhost you need to keep communication rating high. Here is our shortcut for you. Save these Airbnb message templates into your account, they will save you time and get you hosting like a professional, allowing you to focus on hospitality.

Please feel free to copy and edit these message to suit your needs.

Add these Airbnb template messages to the “Saved Messages” on the desktop site. Then it’s just a quick click of a button and your done.

Screening Guests

We require guests to complete their profile before booking. This brief request helps us distinguish genuine guests from fraudulent ones. Most individuals are cooperative in fulfilling this requirement; please ensure this message is promptly sent upon receiving a booking request.

Before we can accept your booking, please go into the Airbnb verification and complete all verification including uploading a form of Government ID.

Once this is completed, let us know and we’ll have your booking accepted right away. We look forward to hosting you.


New Booking

This is the first message that you should send out to your news guests as soon as they make a booking with you. Make them feel welcomed and ensure you send this with 24 hours of them making a booking.

Thank you for choosing us for your stay.

To facilitate a smooth check-in process and have someone available to welcome you, could you please provide your expected arrival time at the property?

A few days prior to your arrival, we'll share comprehensive check-in instructions with you.

We're excited about the opportunity to host you and want to ensure your experience is seamless.

All the best, {Your Name}

Day Before Booking

Just a reminder of their upcoming booking, this especially useful if you do in person checkins. This reminds them of their time commitment and stops you wasting time on hanging around wait to check them in. Some people are very lazy to look up the address in the App, just in case include it in the message to make them feel at ease.

Are we still expecting you about {TIME} tomorrow? Can you please advise me on your method to get to the apartment, just so that we can have someone meet you there. Just as a reminder the address is {ADDRESS}, when you arrive just enter our door number {NUMBER} into the entry system and buzz the door

Any problems or delays, please call me on +{ }

After Check-in, 1st Day

This message is useful to make the guests feel at home. Sometimes your welcome pack doesn’t contain everything they need to know, this helps open a dialogue with them as more often than not, they don’t want to disturb you.

Is everything satisfactory with the apartment? Should you require any assistance during your stay, please don't hesitate to reach out to us.

Wishing you continued enjoyment for the rest of your stay. If there's anything we can do to enhance your experience, please inform us.

Last Day

Send this message on the last day, you want to put in this message any things that you want the guest to do before they depart Like putting the rubbish out or where they should leave the keys.

Time flies! I am sorry that it's already your last day. I hope you had a fantastic stay and I wish you an easy & comfortable trip home.

Here are some Logistics.

Just so we can arrange cleaners can you please let us know what time you are expecting to leave the apartment?

BOOKED THE DEPARTURE CAR SERVICE?
If you booked the car service, the driver will arrive at the appointed time - please be ready as parking outside is difficult for more than a minute or two.
If you decide now that you'd like to be picked up by a driver on departure, email use too. The car service is more reliable and can make that final day stress-free.

DEPARTURE CHECKLIST 
1) Please leave the keys on the table - unless you got them from a keysafe.
2) Please place and towels in the bath tub.
3) Where possible if you could put any glasses into the dishwasher. Thanks!
4) Check draws to see if you've left anything behind.


BROKE SOMETHING? (no worries)
That's OK, these things happen. Just let us know what needs to be replaced or fixed so the next guests have a nice experience too.

LAST MINUTE QUESTIONS? 
Email us, we can help!

So, that's it! We wish you'll be back visiting us very soon!

2 Days After Stay

This is to remind them to leave a review for you and help you improve your Airbnb by obtaining feedback that they might not include in the Airbnb review system.

I hope this email finds you happily back home with wonderful memories of your time with us. We are always striving to improve the experience for guests like you so any feedback would be most appreciated!

Please do drop us an email with anything that you think could have improved your stay.

Thanks again for staying with us and we hope you’ll keep in touch.

Automation

If sending all these messages seems a bit much, you should consider using automation to do the task for you. There are a number of platforms on the market that can help you with this. They require you to connect your Airbnb account to their systems and they monitor any bookings that you get. Automation can also help in increasing your Airbnb search rankings at they response immediately for you, ensuring you always message guests within Airbnb 24-hours window.

Your Porter App, is free for hosts with only one property. Features include automated messages, Channel Manager and a mobile app.

Uplisting is useful for property managers who have more 5 or more properties. This can sync with Airbnb, HomeAway, VRBO, Booking.com

Smartbnb helps automate with personalised messages and works with both Airbnb and HomeAway.

Ultimate Airbnb Guests Booking Guide

Introduction

In this guide, we give our Airbnb tips for renters, these will help your learn Airbnb’s system and navigate it to help you pick out a bargain, high-end apartment or a room with an amazing view. First timers should follow this guide, it will only take 10 minutes to complete. This may save you money and help you avoid a bad vacation rental experience.

How To Get Started As A Guest On Airbnb

Firstly, you will need to register an account on their site. Get started by claiming your free $35 towards your first stay. Click on this link. Then register your basic details on the Airbnb platform

What Is Airbnb?

In a nutshell, Airbnb is a marketplace that allows homeowners to rent out their homes, spare rooms or even caravans. Basically, anywhere that people might want to stay. They handle the payments and communication between the guests (visitors) and the hosts (homeowners) They operate in 90 different counties, with over 900,000 properties listed on their website. Learn more about the history of Airbnb.

Is Airbnb Safe?

Since you are staying at the property of someone else, then you can consider this to be slightly less safe than a hotel.  But it is rare to have a problem, but a little bit of research and verification will keep you and your possessions safe.  We will teach you what to look out for in later chapters.

Airbnb also has a 24/7 customer support desk.  If you run into any problems they are always available. unlike a hotel, where you may have to locate the hotel manager and hope that he/she is able to resolve your problem. Airbnb risks are limited by them holding any bookings fees until after you checkin. We have always found the customer service reps to be fair and well trained to deal with a whole host of issues immediately.

What Do Airbnb Charge?

As a guest you will get charged 6-12% on the cost of your stay as Airbnb’s fee, the rest will go to the host. The host also gets charged a minimum of 3% based on their cancellation policy.

Verifying Your Airbnb Account

If you are new to renting on Airbnb you should verify your account by uploading a form of government ID. This only takes a minute and it will give you creditability when you are attempting to make a booking for the first time. As a bonus verify you should verify social profiles as well, some hosts might ask for this, so, save yourself some time and verify as much as you can.

FIND THAT PERFECT PROPERTY

Before you set out looking for that perfect property, first consider what you want from your accommodation. Here are some details that you may want to consider before looking for accommodation.

  • What type of property do you want to stay in? A whole property, shared, private bathroom or even luxury vacation rental.
  • Are you booking last minute?
  • Do you need a late checkin?
  • How many bedrooms/beds do you need?
  • Do you have pets or require parking or have accessibility needs?

Let’s Get Searching

  1. Enter your dates
  2. Enter the number of guests
  3. Select the location that you want to stay
  4. Select the property type you need.
  5. Observe the number of results, if you have a large choice then start to apply your additional filters, like gyms and hot tubs.
  6. On the left you will see the average pricing, this will give you an indication of how much you’re likely to pay and how busy that time of year is.

First Time Searching On Airbnb

Look at a selection of homes and just click on a few, they’ll open up new tabs and you’ll be able to observe from there.

Things to look for:

1. Examine the photos. You’ve come across lots of pictures that you might love.  But here are a few things to look out for.

  • The average number of pictures for a 1 bedroom apartment should have on average 5-8 pictures. Anything less than this might be that the host is hiding something.
  • Look for the details. Observe how cup and plates might be positioned. If they are aligned nicely then chances are they are quite tidy hosts.
  • Observe how the beds are made. If the sheets are tucked under this has probably been professionally cleaned by a management company

[sciba leftsrc=”https://hostsandhomes.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/bad-made-bed-1.jpg” leftlabel=”Poorly Made Bed” rightsrc=”https://hostsandhomes.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/Well-made-bed.jpg” rightlabel=”Well Made Bed” mode=”horizontal” width=””]

  • Look for the “verified” tag on the pictures. This means that the pictures were taken by Airbnb photographers so can be trusted.

  • Check vertical lines, if they bend inwards, this means that a fisheye lens has been used, so the room might be smaller than it really is

2. Look at the home highlights. These will tell you what other guests have found great about the property.

3. Check the Amenities to ensure all the things that you might need are mentioned here.

4. Check the Airbnb reviews to see what’s important to you. There are 6 categories that hosts can be rated by: Accuracy (ie their description accuracy) Location, Communication, Check-in, Cleanliness and Value. We personally never book anything that has lower than 4-stars on location and cleanliness.

5. Read the reviews. The things to look for here are objective negative Airbnb reviews and really short reviews, kind of positive reviews. I’ve no idea what you are trying to say here.  Try again!  More often than not if they have a large number of really short reviews, then you can probably assume that the guests didn’t want to say anything, so left a short semi-positive review.

How to find an Airbnb bargain 

It’s possible that a host has no reviews on this current property, however, they may have reviews on other properties, This means they are an established host and know what they are doing when it comes to vacation renting.

If you are in a gambling mood, it may be worth taking the chance on this new property.  To promote the property Airbnb often asks the host to reduce their price by upto 20%. You may get a bargain.

Location, Location, Location

Finding a place with a great location can be difficult as a tourist as it can be hard to tell what is good and what is not good. Airbnb by default doesn’t show you the exact location of the property. This is only shown to you after you book.

Tips: On the map itself check the public transit button as this will help you see if you have a station nearby.

Also, go to Booking.com to search to see if there are any hotels nearby.  If there are lots of hotels in the same area as the AirBnB that you are looking at then it is highly likely that it is a good area for you to base yourself as a tourist.

Read the House Rules

The House Rules will describe what is not allowed inside that property as well as checkin a check out times. If you are unable to make these check in or check out times then check with the host to see if they will make an exception for you.

Asking Questions

Before booking feel free to drop the host a message. You will need to use the message system to contact the hosts. Most hosts will be happy to answer your questions. Click on the “Contact Host” button next to the hosts profile.

You will not be able to send telephone numbers or websites via the Airbnb message system until you have made a booking. Stay safe and keep all communications inside the message system.  Once you have messaged the hosts, they will have 24-hours to respond, otherwise, they face a reduction in their response rate.

The Host Has Pre-Approved Me, What Does This Mean?

If the host sent you a pre-approval this means that the host has checked your profile and is happy for you to book their place. It doesn’t mean you have booked yet.  You will then have 24 hours to accept the pre-approval by click on the book button. After the 24 hours expires you will need to rebook the property.

Looking Out For Trustworthy Hosts

Airbnb runs a peer-to-peer review system, so leaving reviews to help other visitors out and ensure that hosts stay on their toes. Check for their account verifications, look for the green tick on their profile picture. This tick informs you that they have a verified form of Government ID i.e. passport, drivers licence etc.

Look at the Joined date, this will tell you if they are new. New hosts may not be totally up to speed with the ins-and-outs of Airbnb, so you may need to give them a little leeway.

Check if the host has a superhost badge on their profile picture. This indicates that the host has hosted at least 10 visitors and has, at a minimum, 80% five-star reviews.

Airbnb Guidebook

The guidebook allows hosts to mark on a map their favourite, bars, clubs, museums, parks and attractions. These can sometimes be combined with the city guide books that Airbnb supply, helping you find things to do in the city or near to your rental.

How to Make An Airbnb Booking

Once you have found the perfect vacation rental, click on the booking button. If the host is using the instant booking feature then you can book immediately.

If you haven’t verified your account, then the host will need to accept or reject your booking manually. Every host has a maximum of 24 hours to approve your booking,

What is Airbnb Instant Book?

Airbnb Instant bookings are listing that do not require the hosts to accept or reject your request.  If you are making a booking at the last minute you should look for properties that have this option. On the search filter, select Instant Book and this will show you only properties that have this option. To book using this option you must first ensure that you have completed your profile.

What Is Airbnb Plus?

Airbnb Plus is Airbnb’s attempt to compete with the hotel market. All these homes have been verified for quality by a quality control representative. They inspect over a 100+ quality point to ensure quality and comfort.  Airbnb Plus properties have a Plus Badge attached to them. Booking these rentals may cost a little bit more but, if you want to know exactly what your getting, then this is a good option.

Airbnb Plus hosts are some of the most highly rated with over 4.8 in the overall rating and 0 cancellations.

Payment

NEVER transfer money outside of Airbnb! They accept all major credit cards and pre-pay cards. They also accept various major debit cards.

Payment should be placed on your card, this is held by Airbnb and charged directly by them. Payment is held in escrow until the day after you check-in and only then is the payment released to the host.

What Does Awaiting Payment Mean?

Awaiting payments means that the host has accepted your booking but your payment has yet to be completed. This could be due to lack of funds or a blocked card. You will have 24 hours to update your payment details. If you don’t, your booking will be cancelled without penalty but you will have to rebook.

Spitting Payments

Airbnb now allows you to pay for your reservation in multiple parts, Select the payless function and you will not have to pay all the money upfront. They will contact you 3 days before the second payment is required.

What Should I Write To The Host When Booking?

Make the host feel at ease by informing them of the following information as your introduction. Remember they can cancel your booking if they feel uneasy with your booking.

  • Who is staying with you in the property e.g. friends or family?
  • What time you are likely to arrive
  • Let them know your flight details as they might be able to share their locally held information on the easiest / cheapest / most efficient way to get to their property.

Understanding the Pricing

Once you select your dates and number of guests the system will automatically calculate the right pricing for you based on those parameters. You may find that the pricing is now higher than what you were initially quoted per night.

Reasons for this pricing change:

  • The dates you have chosen may be highly sought. Airbnb has a dynamic pricing option that lowers and raises pricing for the host automatically based on availability, type of property and various other factors.  Hosts and Airbnb smart pricing can change the pricing for each day, e.g. New Year’s Eve may have a high premium versus a lower price on the 30th of December.
  • An Airbnb cleaning fee may have been added. This is normally a small fee ranging from $10-$50. This is a one-off fee charged to help hosts cover the costs of preparing the apartment after you depart.
  • Service fee, this is the cost to you for using their platform and can range from 6-12%.
  • Extra Guests fee, can be included by the guests for any number of extra people above 1 person. This helps the hosts get the pricing right based on the number of rooms / linen that you might use. For example, you are unlikely to use all the room in a 6 bedroom house if there is only one person stay. So they can reduce the price based on the number of people staying.
  • Security Deposits. All security deposits are held by Airbnb. Hosts can request all or some of your security deposit to repair damages. They will have 14 days to place a request for this or until the next guests check-in.

NB: Don’t exchange monies outside of the Airbnb system. 

Ensure you get your free $35 free credit by click on this link.

Pro Tip: Don’t ask the host for the total price. Whatever price you see in Airbnb will be the price you pay. The host will only see what they get in terms of payout. They would need to calculate exchange rates and other fees (Airbnb service charges etc.) to get you an accurate price.

Local Currency

To help with calculations, ensure you’ve setup the right local currency. This can be changed by visiting your Profile and then Settings. Airbnb will handle the exchange rates.

How to Haggle the right way

If the first thing you send to our team is to ask for a reduction in price, 90% of the time we’ll respond with “Sorry but no”.

Here is what we suggest to get a discount.

First, create a small relationship with the host by telling them about yourself and how you are going to be zero trouble etc. Then ask for a possibility of a discount, especially if it is low season.  (Low season in the UK is generally January through to March.)

You can check the hosts calendar to see how busy they are. If they are already fully booked then your chances of a discount are already reduced. If you are booking last minute your chances of getting a discount improve greatly. If they have a cleaning fee, maybe ask for this to be waived.

The green dates indicate availability

If they accept your request then the host will respond with Special Offer Pricing in the Airbnb system. You will have 24 hours to accept the “special offer”. Having a special offer doesn’t automatically block the dates for you and the host can send multiple special offers to other guests for the same dates.

If you are staying more than 7 days and the host has not automatically applied a long-term stay discount, then also check to see if they will do anything on the pricing for you.

Cancellation Policies

Hosts generally have 3 types of cancellation policy that they can choose from: Flexible, Moderate and Strict. Check which one your host has before you attempt to cancel your booking.

Flexible: Full refund available up until 24 hours before your booking is due to start. After which the first night will not be refunded.

Moderate: Guests cancel up to 5 days in advance to obtain a full refund. If you are within the 5 day period then you will be eligible for a 50% refund.

Strict: A full refund is available if you cancel your booking within 48 hours of making your booking. 14 days prior to check-in you are eligible for a 50% refund. 7 Days-prior to your check-in you will not be refunded.

Airbnb Cleaning fees are always refunded. You can cancel a booking last minute if you have extenuating circumstances.

Pricing Your Airbnb Listing For New Years Eve

New Year’s Eve can be highly profitable for that one day but it comes with its own issues and risks. As a company, we don’t often take bookings less that one night, and over the NYE period we may extend this to 3-4 nights depending on the property type.

If you have a booking for one night for December 31st it’s likely that it’s going to be a bit of a party, you may risk issues with your neighbour and there is always going to be a bit more of a clean-up. Getting cleaning staff who are willing to work on NYD is a challenge in itself.

We obviously want to maximize profits but keeping damages/trouble to a minimum. Often want to target families and longer stays over that period of time.

Here is what we do:

  • We increase the pricing for NYE and New Years Day. On NYE the price for the listing is normally increased by 175% and on NYD this is normally set 150% increase on our normal daily pricing.
  • We alter the minimum length of stay to 3-days, helping us avoid any party crews.  This can be done by editing your listings Availability, then selecting Trip length click edit, then selecting Add a custom rule for seasons or specific dates

Increasing the pricing helps weed out guests that might want to use our Airbnb as a party house. It may seem greedy to guests booking but our number priority is to protect our clients’ property. By increasing the price per night may also result in a negative review, we help to compensate that by leaving a bumped up welcome pack of goodies.  Hotels nearby will often increase the booking fee by up to 200% depending on the city.

We recommend doing price alterations and minimum stays as early as possible, we do ours one year in advance, giving us the best chance to get a booking over that festive period.

If you have a guest that wants to stay but you’re slightly worried, you can always increase the deposit value temporarily, and reduce this back down as soon as they make a booking, giving you extra piece-of-mind.

What you can’t do is alter the price after a booking has been made. You may want to do this for various reasons. (like Smart Pricing didn’t change enough)  Unfortunately, it’s too late and the contract has been made, and you’ll have to suck it up!

Be sure to check out our guide to keeping your property safe during the New Years Eve celebrations, even though it may mean maximum profits on this day it also equals maximum danger as the chances of a party in your property is high.

New to hosting? How to protect yourself!

More info: https://www.rarchitecture.com.au/parkdale_house_balwyn
Photography: Dylan James - https://dylanjames.com.au/


If you’re considering diving into the world of Airbnb hosting or are already part of the hosting community, there a few essential aspects you need to be aware of to ensure a smooth experience and stay within the law. here are six considerations to think about if you’re hosting.

1. Understanding Local Laws:

Before you embark on your Airbnb journey, it’s crucial to familiarize yourself with the specific regulations in your city regarding short-term rentals. Cities often have zoning laws that dictate the type of properties allowed for short-term rentals. Take the time to investigate whether your home falls within the permissible limits.

Equally important is to determine the maximum number of days you are allowed to sublet your property each year. Operating outside these legal boundaries can lead to severe consequences, especially in cities like New York and San Francisco, where fines are notably steep.

2. Registration, Permits, and Licenses:

Many cities require hosts to register and obtain permits or licenses to operate short-term rentals. Skipping this step may result in fines, and some cities are actively cracking down on unregistered properties listed on Airbnb. Boston and San Francisco, for example, are taking measures to curb the operation of illegal hotels disguised as Airbnb listings.

To ensure a hassle-free hosting experience, invest the time in understanding your city’s specific requirements. Compliance not only protects you from legal troubles but also contributes to a healthier and more sustainable home-sharing ecosystem.

3. Tax Obligations:

While Airbnb has maintained a stance of protecting host privacy by not disclosing private data, this approach has led some hosts to evade local taxes. Several cities are responding with stricter regulations to ensure fair tax contributions from hosts.

It’s crucial for hosts to fulfill their tax obligations voluntarily, as relying on Airbnb’s confidentiality may not be a sustainable strategy. For example the UK now disclose income information to the HMRC.

4. Lease Agreement Compliance:

For hosts who are renters, it’s essential to review the terms of your lease agreement. Not all landlords permit subleasing, and violating these terms can lead to eviction. Some Airbnb hosts have faced eviction even after gaining national attention for their hospitality, emphasizing the importance of adhering to lease agreements.

Before listing your property, seek written permission from your landlord to avoid potential conflicts. A tarnished rental history could make it challenging to secure housing in the future, so it’s wise to prioritize communication with your landlord.

5. Insurance Coverage:

Hosting on Airbnb involves welcoming a diverse range of guests, from delightful individuals to those who may cause issues. Having a robust insurance plan is crucial to protect yourself and your property. While Airbnb offers a $1 million Host Guarantee called AirCover, hosts should carefully review the terms and conditions to understand the limitations.

Relying solely on Airbnb’s coverage may not be sufficient, and hosts should consider additional insurance that cover short term rentals. .

6. Health and Safety Measures:

While Airbnb currently lacks the stringent health and safety regulations imposed on traditional service industries like hotels, hosts should prioritize the well-being of their guests. Adhering to Airbnb’s guidelines on Responsible Hosting is a fundamental step in this regard.

Basic safety measures include providing a first aid kit and a fire extinguisher, ensuring the proper functioning of smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors, marking clear fire escape routes, and providing emergency contact information. Hosts should also address potential hazards within the property, such as exposed wires or malfunctioning appliances, to create a safe environment for guests. You should also put this information in your welcome book, so it’s easy for the guests to find emergency information.

In conclusion, being an Airbnb host is a rewarding endeavour, but it comes with responsibilities. Taking the time to understand and address legal, financial, and safety considerations will not only protect you from potential issues but also contribute to a positive and sustainable home-sharing community. Embrace the adventure, but do so with diligence and a commitment to being a responsible host.

5 Tips To Help You Start Your Airbnb Journey

Home Sharing Tips

If you’re going away and need a little extra cash without the trouble and obligations that come with a full-time rental agreement. Because of this Airbnb has become a good alternative for these people as it brings in an income but is more flexible. However, when setting up their Airbnb some people aren’t sure what all needs to be done. Hopefully, these tips will give you a better idea of what your basic checklist should be before you are ready to open your home to others.

1. Clean Your Home Thoroughly

For this step, many may assume that the normal amount of cleaning that they do throughout their home is enough to suffice but in most cases, it isn’t. Of course, if you do not want to do the amount of deep cleaning that this requires you could hire an outside professional to do it for you. This will also help if your carpet has any slight stains that you want to have taken out before renting out your house.

2. Have Secured Storage

It is important that you have a safe area where you can store any personal possessions that you want to leave on the property but could also be stolen. The best choice for this would be a lockable closet which you can use to store things such as jewellery, family heirlooms, or personal keepsakes that have sentimental value.

3. Have Very Clear Rules

You will want to make sure that at the time the rental agreement is made both you and the renter are fully confident that you understand the rules of the house that you have predetermined. This will make sure that if any rules are violated they will not be able to claim that they were unaware there were other rules in place. Some rules that you should consider thinking about are:-

– Are pets allowed? Is there a pet fee or penalty for breaking pet rules?

– Do you allow smoking on your property?

– Are there hours the renter needs to be quieter?

4. Make the Property Easy to Access

Nobody wants to get to the rental site ready to relax just to find out that they have somehow been locked out. In order to prevent this the best options a keyless entry (which is a box that you type a passcode in to unlock the door), or a lockbox (which is a box that will store the entry keys).

With these tips in mind, you will have a better idea of how to run a successful Airbnb during the beginning phase. Especially when it comes to making sure your customers are comfortable and happy on their first day in your home.

5. Create a Welcome Guide

If you haven’t already created a welcome guide we highly recommend spending sometime to create one. Firstly, having a welcome guide can significantly enhance the guest experience by providing essential information about your property, local attractions, and amenities. This not only makes guests feel more comfortable but also reduces the likelihood of common queries and the guests contacting you. We recommend putting in the guide house rules, minimizing the chances of misunderstandings during the stay. Additionally, including local recommendations in the guide adds a personal touch to the guest experience, making their stay more memorable. Most important of all the guide can also feature emergency information and contacts, ensuring the safety and well-being of your guests.

If you don’t already have a welcome guide you can download one for free for our resources.

Airbnb Customer Services

Important aurbnb numbers

For new Airbnb hosts, be sure to enter the appropriate customer services numbers for your region into your phone. Do this before you first guest arrives, just incase of any issue, you’ll have Airbnb only the line in minutes, instead of digging around looking for their numbers.

In case of emergencies: If you feel unsafe or are worried about your well-being or that of someone else, please reach out to local emergency services without delay.

United Kingdom 
United States 
Argentina 
Australia
Austria 
Brazil
Canada 
Chile 
China 
Denmark 
France 
Germany 
Germany
Greece
Hong Kong 
Ireland
Israel
Italy
Japan 
Mexico 
Netherlands
New Zealand
Norway 
Peru
Poland
Portugal
Puerto Rico 
Russia 
South Korea
Spain 
Sweden 
Switzerland 
Taiwan

+44 203 318 1111
+1-415-800-5959 +1-855-424-7262 (toll-free) +1-888-326-5753
+54 11 53 52 78 88
+61 2 8520 3333
+43 72 08 83 800
+55 21 3958-5800
1-855-424-7262
+56229380777
+86 10 5904 5310 – 400 890 0309 (shared-cost)
+45 89 88 20 00
+33 1 84 88 40 00
+49 30 30 80 83 80 Or, +49 30 31 19 91 75
+30 211 1989888
+852 5808 8888
+353 1 697 1831
+972 3 939 9977
+39-06-99366533
+81 3 4580 0999 +81 800 100 1008 (toll-free)
+52 55 41 70 43 33
+31 20 52 22 333
+64 4 4880 888
+47 21 61 16 88
+51 1 7089777
+48 22 30 72 000
+351 30 880 3888
+1 787 919-0880
+74954658090 – 88003017104 (toll-free)
+82 2 6022 2499 – +82 808 220 230 (toll-free)
+34 91 123 45 67
+46 844 68 12 34
+41 43 50 84 900
0800 868 313

For Superhosts (they will verify you):
Germany: +49 30 31 19 91 75
Italy: +39 02 947559910
North America: +1-647-945-9627 +1.888.326.5753

One can also try Twitter as well if it’s not an urgent request:
@AirbnbHelp

You can request a call back with the Airbnb neighbourhood feedback system. You have the option to submit a report for a party, noise complaint, or neighbourhood concern here.

Detect Hidden Cameras in your Airbnb

detecting hidden spy cameras

In the news recently you may have heard that a man Jeffrey Bigham found inside his rental two small hidden cameras.

Airbnb has hosted millions of trips so something happening like this is rare, but it can happen so here are our top tips to keep you and your safe by locating hidden cameras that might be in your Airbnb.

Can Hosts Have Cameras?

Firstly, Airbnb DO allow cameras to be in the property, however, the host will need to fully disclose any surveillance devices in the property via the House Rules. These are considered to be anything that captures video, still images or audio. Eg. computer monitors, nanny cameras or Nest Cams.

Camera can only be placed in public spaces such as a front door or driveway or shared spaces, and these need to be explicitly disclosed prior to a reservation

Cameras in shared areas must be visible and disclosed in the listing description. Devices should never monitor private spaces like bedrooms, bathrooms, or common areas used for sleeping, such as a living room with a sofa bed.

Common Places to Find Hidden Cameras

Here is a list of common places that you might find a spy surveillance camera:

  • Stuffed teddy bears (Nanny Cams)
  • Books
  • Smoke Detectors
  • Wall pictures
  • Mirrors
  • Shelves
  • DVD & BluRay Cases
  • Desk and Floor standing Lamps
  • Power Outlets and Power Adapters
  • Clocks
  • Plant Pots
 

How to Detect Hidden Cameras

Here are a few ways in which you can help look for these hidden spy cameras.

1. Turn off all the lights

This method will help you locate night vision cameras that have infrared LED’s. During low light condition, the LED have a very faint glow.

Step 1. Turn off all the lights and draw the curtains in the room. Ensuring you have a pitch black room.

Step 2. Look around the room slowly the obvious location mentioned above to glowing red lights.

Step 3. Turn on the camera on your mobile phone, look through via this to detect flashing lights that you can’t see with the naked eye.

Step 4. Use a flashlight, to look over each item and look for unusual reflections. This will be the lenses of the camera creating a reflection.

2. How to scan the network for hidden cameras

This method will help you detect IP connected devices that connect to the home network.

Step 1. Turn off all electrical items that you can find in the Airbnb apart from the router/hub.

Step 2. Download a network scanner. My personal favourite is Fing.

Apple
Google

Step 3. Run the Fing App this will help you look for items that are still transmitting Internet signals that are connected to the network. These can be doorbells and entry systems. If Fing has the MAC address of know surveillance companies it will also show up as such,

3. Use a Mobile Phone

This method will help you detect devices that use 3G or 4G mobile networks or RF signals.

Step 1. Make a phone call to someone you know, and explain what you’re doing. This should be someone who is not in the property.

Step 2. Move the phone around the room slowly, and listen out for a buzzing sound. This is the interference of the other network or RF signals. If the buzzing gets louder the closer you generally are getting to the concealed device.

What do I do if I find a Hidden Camera?

Step 1. Firstly move out of its viewing angle and your personal items.

Step 2. Contact Airbnb, to notify them of this, it may be that the owners have mentioned that they have surveillance equipment in their hosting terms.

Step 3. Contact the local authorities. Most countries forbid hidden sky cameras in bathrooms, changing rooms and toilets. Basically, anywhere that you may assume personal privacy.

Whats is VRBO’s Premier Host Program?

Viersen, Germany - March 1. 2021: Closeup of mobile phone screen wit logo lettering of online booking travel agency vrbo with sun hat and map

Premier Host, akin to Airbnb’s Superhost program, is a complimentary initiative that helps recognise property hosts who consistent deliver exceptional stays for guests. Upon meeting the eligibility criteria, hosts will automatically become part of this exclusive program.

Premier Hosts are distinguished by a badge displayed on their listing. VRBO also introduce the Premier Host filter, allowing guests to refine their search and view only properties that have obtained Premier Host status. This feature empowers guests to make informed decisions, ensuring a premium selection of properties by hosts committed to providing exceptional experiences.

Eligibility Criteria

To attain Premier Host status, each listing within your account must meet the following benchmarks:

  • Maintain an average review rating of 4.4 or higher.
  • Achieve a booking acceptance rate of 95% or above.
  • Sustain an owner-initiated cancellation rate of 1% or lower.
  • Have a minimum of 3 VRBO reviews.
  • Secure at least 5 bookings or 60 booked nights.
  • Premier Host Perks

Is it worth being a Premier Host?

The advantages of being a Premier Host extend to all properties within your account, encompassing:

  • A distinguished Premier Host badge.
  • Inclusion in the Premier Host filter for enhanced visibility.
  • Participation in the Boost program designed to optimise your search position.
  • Premier Host Filter

Plus the program is free, and you only need to maintain your high standards.

Quarterly Evaluations

To ensure the quality remains high for hosts consistently providing exceptional guest experiences, VRBO conducts quarterly assessments. These assessments occur on 1st February, 1st May , 1st August, and 1st November.

Ensure your keep those reviews high and get into the Premier Host program today and elevate your hosting experience to new heights.

Airbnb tenant finally removed after 575-days

Airbnb review system

A rouge tenant who had occupied an Airbnb property for a whopping 575 days without paying a penny has finally been forced to vacate the premises.

Ms Hisschhorn initially booked a six month stay in a out house connected to a mansion in Brentwood, Los Angeles, owned by Sascha Jovanovic. However, when her initial booking expired, Jovanovic allowed her to stay in his mansion while the issues where resolved, but did this outside of the protection of Airbnb. Hisschhorn refused to leave the mansion, citing COVID-19 concerns and what she alleged to be an illegally constructed shower.

Hirschhorn’s lengthy stay, earning her the moniker of the ‘Airbnb tenant from hell,‘ has now come to an end, as she was seen being escorted off the California property by the police. She was even assisted by three male friends in moving her belongings, including several boxes, into a waiting white van.

Adding to the complications, Hirschhorn counter-sued Jovanovic for $100,000, claiming it was to cover her ‘relocation costs’.

Jovanovic, relieved by the resolution, spoke to the Daily Mail, stating, “I’m very relieved and also a bit overwhelmed. It was a long time coming, but now she is finally out! This weekend is going to be very positive.”

However, the situation may not be entirely resolved just yet, as Jovanovic had taken measures to prevent Hirschhorn from returning. Rucci, a legal representative, suggested cancelling an upcoming eviction hearing now that Hirschhorn had left the property. In response, Hirschhorn’s attorney, Amanda Seward, claimed that her departure was only ‘temporary’ and accused Jovanovic of harassment after he informed them that the locks had been changed at the house.

The lesson learnt here is make sure you stay within the Airbnb platform for all funds and conversations, otherwise it’s unlikely you’ll be protected if any thing goes wrong.

New York City’s Airbnb Crackdown Begins

Manhattan Uptown Aerial View

New regulations in New York City, targeting illegal short-term rentals, are now in effect, impacting tens of thousands of listings. These rules, passed in January as Local Law 18, bolster the enforcement of existing regulations governing short-term rentals, requiring hosts to register with the city government.

To be considered legal short-term rentals, properties must host no more than two people, with the host residing on-site and providing guests access to the entire home. The new regulations demand eligible hosts to prove their residency and ensure their properties meet safety codes and other regulatory standards. Violators may face fines ranging from $1,000 to $5,000.

Under these new regulations renders many Airbnb unsuitable for many families. The impact of these regulations has been swift, resulting in a significant reduction in available listings throughout the five boroughs. Airbnb, in response, has begun cancelling and refunding existing short-term rental reservations with check-in dates on or after December 2.

Airbnb and Vrbo now bear the responsibility of ensuring that their platform users comply with city regulations. There are currently more than 40,000 Airbnb listings within the city, and the introduction of these new regulations is anticipated to result in a substantial reduction in the availability of such listings.

Should You Accept Pets in Your Airbnb

Don’t leave home without them Many travelers love to bring their dog or dogs along with them when they go on vacation. it makes sense as no one cares about your dog better than you do. One way to get more business for your Airbnb property is to make it pet friendly. Having more options … Read more

How to Avoid Parties in your Vacation Rental

With party season approaching, it’s important to ensure you get the right guests in your vacation rental for Halloween, Thanks Giving, Christmas and New Years Eve. In order to prevent parties, here are some of our top tips.

Review your reservations

Any requests that you get from guests be sure to follow up to ensure that person understand your house rules and ask simple questions, like asking them the reasons for their stay and who will be joining them in the property. Don’t be afraid to cancel instant bookings, if you feel that the guest doesn’t match your criteria or isn’t suited to your property.

Set strong expectations with potential bookers

Use house rules to set expectations. Ensure that you set clear rules before rental occur before a tenant moves in; he or she should assure you that they are going to abide by the rules and regulations made. Include any restrictions that should apply to your property in the house rules. If possible, someone who is not okay with the rules should not move in since you don’t want unexpected surprises during your stay. People should be given the rules during the time of inquiries so that they can make a decision of whether they are in or not.

Pay attention to how you describe your property

When describing your property, do not mention that the property is great for any kind of event. Anyone renting the property should understand the rules; guests should be in a position to understand your expectations around events and noise.

Check your deposit settings

Check your listing to ensure you have a damage deposit. Having a high damage deposit will help warn of potential party guests.

Double-check last-minute bookings

Last-minute bookings are the bookings you should really look out for during the party season, as most parties are organised last minute.

Question local bookings

Beware of any guests that are locals, be sure to ask questions before accepting their booking. Guests who are local have a high percentage of inviting unauthorised guests to your property and this is how impromptu parties start

Check their reviews

Most people won’t want to lose their ratings that they have built up, so guests with a high number of reviews often tend to follow the house rules. Beware for new accounts.

Say no to one-night bookings

This is probably the biggest tell. Increase the minimum stay period during these important dates to 3-5 days, people who just wanna party will not want to have the extra expenses.

Introduce a noise monitoring device

A noise monitoring device is great because you can simply monitor your properties without invading your guest’s privacy. Most homeowners and property managers use this device to ensure that their property is responsibly rented. This device will alert you in case of noise; it is amazing and helpful because you will take action when it’s not late.

Establish a good relationship with your neighbours

You should have a good relationship with your neighbours and, if possible, let them have your phone number or the vacation rental manager’s number so that in case any issue arises, they are able to reach you directly. instead of them calling the local council or police. Your neighbours will be your first line of defence against parties.

Report misconduct

If someone doesn’t follow the rules by either hosting a house party or doing something else that is not appropriate, just report. The case will be investigated by Vrbo & Airbnb to check if policies were broken. In case of anything, just contact the authorities, it is quite understandable that some people tend to break simple rules. Rules and regulations provided ensure that people live in a peaceful environment; everyone should follow the provided rules. Neighbours want peace as well as everyone else; breaking property rules is wrong, and if violated, you might face charges. Get in touch with customer services right away do not delay.

Authorized events should follow local law regulations

If there is any authorized event on your property, there is no reason as to why they should break the rules. If your area does not allow gatherings or night bookings, then make sure that tenants and guests understand the rules. Be warned if you do openly accept parties and events, Airbnb has been removing these types of properties from its platform over the last few months, especially during this pandemic.

 

The Eight Best Airbnb’s in Miami 2021

If you are looking for an exotic holiday full of delicious food, relaxing on the beach and incredible nightlife, Miami is definitely the place to be!

The second-largest city in Florida, Miami has lots of unique places to visit, from the golden sands of Miami Beach through to the lush greenery of Coral Gables.

Once you’ve booked your flight and planned out what swimwear you’re going to take, you need to sort out where you’re going to stay.

Airbnb has lots of amazing places to stay in Miami, no matter whether you’re looking for a relaxing beachside vacation or something livelier in the city.

Here are our favourite Airbnb Miami venues, from intimate apartments all the way through to fun family homes… and even a boat!

A stunning Miami beach apartment

Perfect for: Honeymooners who love the beach

Located on the sunny shores of Miami Beach, this gorgeous apartment has bedside views of the beach, which is only a two-minute walk away – just take the lift down to the lower level and walk past the pool!

The apartment is decked out in crisp white with artwork created by the apartment owners, making it a gorgeously contemporary place to stay.

The apartment not only comes with a free parking space but all the things you need for the perfect beach holiday, from beach umbrellas and snorkelling gear all the way through to a blender to make some delicious fruity cocktails at the end of a hard day of sunbathing!

The reviews not only celebrate waking up to some glorious beach views but also the hosts, who are very helpful and attentive.

A fun tropical family home

Perfect for: Getting the family together for a sunny holiday

This large house has four bedrooms, making it the ideal choice if you want to take the family out for a week away. The star of the show though is the outside garden with a large pool and slide, running waterfall and a tiki bar for late-night cocktails!

It’s nearby to two zoos (Miami Zoo and ZWF Miami) as well as Everglades National Park. There are also several malls nearby making it a great location no matter what your family is interested in!

The people that have reviewed this venue loved the outside pool and barbeque area.

Gorgeous home with jacuzzi

Perfect for: A cosy get-together with friends

This four-bedroom home can home up to eight people, making it a lovely option for a week away with friends. Located more inland, you’re thirty minutes’ drive away from Miami Beach and an hour’s drive away from Key Largo, which is home to the world’s second-largest artificial reef!

The crowning glory of this Airbnb rental is the stunning pool area, replete with its very own jacuzzi hot tub! Imagine having a lovely day out shopping and sightseeing, and then relaxing in the jacuzzi with a couple of cold beers.

The reviews are extremely positive, loving the cleanliness of the home as well as the gorgeous outdoor space.

A unique holiday on a sailboat

Perfect for: Couples looking for something a little bit different

Like the idea of watching the sunset on the horizon from your own little private boat? This is the perfect rental for you!

The Hunter 26 Sailboat is cosily built for two people, with a bed, dining area, bathroom and comfortable outdoor space – with two kayaks provided if you want to explore the nearby islands!

The boat is docked in the famous Coconut Grove area, and the host is available to take you to the mainland if you want to do a little bit of sightseeing on dry land.

Reviewers absolutely loved the view (and the fact that you can see turtles and manatees) as well as the friendly host.

A cosmopolitan city apartment

Perfect for: Sole travellers or couples looking for an exciting city break

This beautifully decorated one-bedroom apartment is located in Little Havana, meaning you are a stones-throw away from great shops, delicious restaurants and vibrant bars!

There’s free parking, and you are only a short drive or walk away from the beach if you fancy a change of scenery.

People who stayed here loved the stylish and cosy vibe of the apartment as well as the location.

A glamourous penthouse on South Beach

Perfect for: Those who love living the high life

This two-bedroom penthouse is located on top of a hotel. It’s minutes away from South Beach and smack-bang in the middle of the fashionable West Avenue.

The crowning glory of this penthouse is the private roof house terrace with stunning views of the beach and ocean! It has to be seen to be believed.

Reviewers agreed that the terrace was fantastic and loved the views. They also complimented the host, for who nothing was too much trouble.

A cute little cottage with a pool

Perfect for: A couple wanting a relaxing break

This adorable cottage is near Little Havana and Brickell, Miami’s financial district. This quirky little guesthouse was recently renovated, with one bedroom and one bathroom as well as a pool that is shared with the main house

People that stayed here loved that the guesthouse was close to lots of different amenities, as well as bikes being available to do a little bit of exploring!

A designer home in the heart of Coconut Grove

Perfect for: Those who like the modern touches

This four-bedroom home has a quirky look and feel to it, having been specially designed by an award-winning architect.

This rental is unique in that it allows pets, making it a perfect choice if you want to bring your dog along for some early-morning walkies on the beach!

Reviewers loved the spacious home, stunning design and bright colours!

Airbnb in Miami for your next vacation

We hoped you enjoyed our short guide to the best Airbnb’s in Miami and have given you lots to think about planning your next holiday!

Where are your favourite places to visit in Miami?

How to Get an Airbnb Discount

Discounts With Airbnb

As hosts, we also use Airbnb a lot for personal and work travel. Like anyone else we are also looking for ways, we can save on our vacation and how we can get and discount on Airbnb. Below are some of our top-secret tips on how you can save on travel with Airbnb.

First-time users of Airbnb can use a voucher code

By far the simplest way to save on Airbnb is to use a voucher code. Our voucher codes can save your up to $60 on your first trip. The voucher code is directly added to your account when your book you register and book your first trip.

Airbnb Voucher

Book Early

Airbnb help entice hosts by asking them to give early bird offer, if you book 30-days in advance you can some find hosts that will give you a discount. This is automatically applied and you’ll see this upfront. Easy!

Book A Longer Stay

This may seem to be counter-intuitive but bear with us. An automatic option for most hosts is to give discounts for a stay longer than 7-days. If your vacation is only for 6-days consider extending this to 7-days and the automatic discount will be automatically applied.  Check the example below. 6-Nights at the cost of $253.33 a night. But the host has automatically applied a 21% discount of £386.40 for 7-nights, making it worth your while to book for longer, even if you’re not going to use the extra night. After you have booked and checked in etc… let you hosts know that you may be leaving a day soon than expected. Simple!

Book early and for month-long stays

It’s possible to obtain even larger discounts if you book early and for month-long stays. Even if you’re only wishing to book for 24-nights, it may advantageous to book for even longer, normally this is 30-nights. In the example below we book for 24-nights, we get the early bird discount and long stay discount. However, if we extend the number of days to 30 days, the total say of our trip is cheaper by $100! Bingo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Book Last Minute

Just like hotels no hosts wants an empty apartment. Empty apartments don’t early any money! If you book last minute it’s highly like the host has reduced the price to the minimum that they are willing to accept.

Avoid Busy Dates

If you pick certain dates, just like hotels, hosts can raise prices to maximize profits. Select less busy dates and you’re likely to get cheaper flights and accommodation. If you look at the example below the cost per each night has increased by over $100.

 

 

 

 

Look for New Hosts

New hosts on Airbnb will often have their prices slightly cheaper than established hosts as they need to attract guests to get their reviews up. This can be hit and miss as they might not know some of the things make it a five-star stay. But no risk no reward!

Asking the host for a discount

We often give discounts to guests by sending them a special price. However, this all depends on how you ask. If the first thing you ask for is a discount or special price. We would 99% of the time decline your request, even though it was in our power to grant this. If on the other hand, we gained some rapport with the new guests, then we likely gave a discount. On some hosts it might work if you ask upfront, other it might just alienate them, use this method with care. Hosts can send you this discount via a feature called Special Offer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Airbnb Remove Profile Pictures

You may have noticed that you can no longer see the pictures of your potential guests. Airbnb has done this in a measure to attempt to reduce discrimination of potential guests. Now you’ll only see the first let of the customers first name.

Will I get to see the guest profile picture?

The profile picture is now only shown when a booking has been confirmed. Airbnb attempt to ask all guests for them to upload a picture when they signup for the first time, but this still isn’t mandatory.

The guest doesn’t have a profile picture

After the guest has booked the might have a profile picture available. You can force guests to have a profile picture before booking with you by altering you’re booking setting.

Enforcing profile pictures

To insist on guests having a profile picture you can do this your booking settings
1. Click on Booking Settings
2. Next, to the Guests Requirements click edit
3. Check the required profile picture button
4. Click save
Even if you have this option checked you will not be able to see the profile picture until they have confirmed their booking.

After booking my guests do not have a profile picture

You can kindly remind your guests to please complete their profile picture and to upload a form a government ID.  You can mention to your guests that they are not staying in a hotel.
“Thank you for booking with us and we can’t wait to host you. To help just verify you when you arrive, please can you upload a profile picture for us. If there is any other information that you need to know. Then please do let us know.”

I feel uncomfortable with the guest after they have uploaded their photo

After you’ve seen the guests photo you may feel uncomfortable with this. You can’t cancel just because you don’t like their face/colour/race or posture. However, if they have uploaded a picture of the Mountain, you should ask them to change it.
If they don’t comply you can ask Airbnb to cancel the reservation penalty free. (Always call Airbnb before cancelling a booking to make sure you are within your rights to cancel)