Now is the best time to get your Airbnb hosting supplies in order
Whether Airbnb profits are on the decline or not, make sure your home is stocked
When I walked in the door of the home where the Great Pyrenees was hanging out in her crate, I thought the couple who hired me was amazingly organized. There were post-it notes everywhere, all in regard to their dog. I had a post-it map of where dog treats, dog food, dog dishes, dog toys, warnings about chewed shoes and computer cables, and reminders about when to walk and feed him.
But then I entered the bedroom. A used comforter and sheets were messily laid out on the bed, and I received a message saying they didn’t have time to change them. I walked to the kitchen to put my food inside, and there was molded bread and cheese in the refrigerator, along with dishes all over the counter and sink. The couple had already admitted that they used dog grooming money to buy plane tickets. And the dog’s fur was so matted that I could see the patches every time he turned his butt to me. The couple was really very nice during the meet-and-greet, and I never expected them to leave the home like this.
I just shook my head. My mother’s hosting skills are beaten into my brain. I couldn’t imagine asking someone to stay in my home and not preparing for them to be there. That is one of many reasons I have opted out of Airbnbs. Whether it’s a hotel, motel or holiday inn, I’d rather take my chances and hope the housekeeping staff properly cleaned the room and have it prepared for me to live in. But when you’re dog-sitting instead of dog-boarding, you just have to roll with the punches. So I did exactly what this lady did in her hotel room — I disinfected the place from top to bottom, cleaned the sheets and tried as best I could to brush the dog.
How is this story relevant for Airbnb?
If you’ve read the latest news from the short-term rental analytics company AllTheRooms, you know Airbnb's revenues per listing have dropped by nearly 50% in some cities.
New Orleans, Louisiana (-14.9%)
Orlando, Florida (-10.5%)
Sevierville, Tennessee (-9.4%)
Austin, Texas (-7.2%)
Panama City, Florida (-6.9%)
Lakeland, Florida (-6.3%)
Seattle, Washington (-6%)
San Antonio, Texas (-3.9%)
Phoenix, Arizona (-3%)
Even in Kaanapali Maui in Hawaii, Airbnb high-priced rentals went from earning $761 to dropping its rate to $455 to get by.
Sure, the oceanfront mansion in Malibu is giving Airbnb some much-needed publicity before the “Barbie” film comes out this summer. But every home isn’t going to look like that. Some Airbnb consumers are looking for luxury rentals with hot tubs and firepits while others just want a place to lay their heads. Still, both groups are looking for an Airbnb host who cares and knows how to shop and keep in stock the bare essentials before they book the vacation rental (or vacation room).
Here’s what you need to have on your grocery list before your guest arrives. (Note: Don’t leave your dog. I once showed up to another pet owner’s home to find someone sitting in the living room. Turns out he was an Airbnb guest, but the host never told him he was leaving his dog behind.)