December 19, 2016
If you’re going away for the holidays, there’s a solution close at hand for offsetting the expense your trip. In fact, there’s a good chance it’s so close you’re actually sitting in it: Your house!
Renting your home to strangers while you are gone yourself is something that many people wouldn’t consider – but it’s a growing trend, especially in Europe. It may not be for everyone, but renting your house – or renting other people’s homes – can be a cost-effective way to travel to places you normally couldn’t afford.
Renting out private homes, living rooms, and even backyard sheds has transformed the traveling industry. Rather than renting a room at a hotel, you can stay with local hosts who often treat you like a family guest. This value-added service is what makes vacation rental sites like Airbnb so popular. At the same time, as a homeowner hoping to increase your income by renting your house on Airbnb, you want to take certain precautions to protect your space.
The primary reason that anyone rents via Airbnb is so they can have a place to sleep when traveling. That’s why you can rent a single bedroom if you want. Whether you are renting out your guest bedroom, or your entire three-bedroom house, you want to take some precautions regarding your bedding. After all, you do not want to have unwanted guests, such as lice or bedbugs, brought into your home during an Airbnb stay.
Start by choosing a mattress cover that will protect your mattress from pests, dust, dander, germs and other undesirables.
After your Airbnb guests leave, remove all of the bedding from the bed. Wash the bed clothing and sanitize it using hot water and high heat, at a minimum. Consider using a laundry service if your washer and dryer aren’t up to the task of deep cleaning. A tip here is to have extra bedding, including a mattress protector and sheets, to use in between cleanings, if you have a calendar full of Airbnb bookings.
And don’t forget the pillows! Did you know you can wash and dry some pillows? According to Huffington Post, you want to wash your pillows every three months and the pillow cover every three weeks. (This is in addition to washing the pillow cases after each guest’s use.) If your pillows aren’t washable, you will want to replace them just as often to prevent bacteria and germs from spreading from guest to guest.
One of the perks of going through a local hosting site like Airbnb is that you are well protected. In order to become a host, you have to complete an application and fill out security information that is verified by a walk-through visit by an Airbnb employee.
Additionally, your guests will have to complete a thorough application that ensures they are equally as safe as you are. Airbnb users also verify their identity and list connected social media accounts. This allows hosts to do a bit of their own background check on their guests.
Airbnb also allows hosts to personally vet any potential guests. They can choose not to allow people to stay in their homes if they feel uncomfortable about the guest. Reviews are listed by both hosts and guests so that you can see how they’ve been in the past with other Airbnb rentals, for an added peace of mind.
However, you still should take extra precautions. Add padlocks to your personal bedroom door, as well as the rooms that are off limits to guests. If you are not going to be at home during their stay get your neighbors to keep a lookout for you. This extra attention to your security, in addition to the safety measures set forth by Airbnb, will help you feel safe and sound while renting your space for extra income.
Over time, you will become more accustomed to what and whom to look for when making the wisest choices of guests, so that you can feel secure when sharing your home as an Airbnb host.
Airbnb renting is a convenient way to share your love for your home and city by letting you serve as a local ambassador. By taking the necessary steps to ensure your Airbnb safety, both with your property and personal self, you can make the most of this income-generating service. Your future guests will appreciate your attention to detail and experience in providing a safe and healthy home for rent.