Is Airbnb Profitable for Hosts? 14 Tips to Increase Airbnb Income

It’s become easier than ever to turn any space into an Airbnb. From treehouses to guest houses, it seems like just about everybody is an Airbnb host. With over 6 million listings and nearly 3 million hosts worldwide, that probably is the case! Many people are realizing that being a full-time vacation rental owner can be extremely profitable, but they also might feel like they could get more results.

Fortunately, it is possible to improve your Airbnb income significantly, but it will take a lot of hard work, creativity, and sacrifice. If you are not willing to invest time, money, and hard work, it’s unlikely your Airbnb revenue will grow.


If you’re eager to grow your business, but you don’t know what steps to take, you’ve come to the right place! Check out these 14 ideas to boost your Airbnb earnings and take your vacation rental to the next level.

How profitable is Airbnb?

When prospective vacation rental owners decide to invest in vacation rental property, this is the first question they think of: is Airbnb profitable for hosts? The answer is yes! Well, it can be if done correctly. We’ve outlined some of the major considerations that factor into Airbnb profit.

Running an Airbnb can be quite time-consuming, so make sure you’ve perfectly set up your business to guarantee profitability. Using an Airbnb management software that allows you to connect your Airbnb account to a channel manager and automate repetitive tasks like sending a welcome email will prove your expertise to guests and ultimately increase bookings.

Average Airbnb profit

The profits you make from Airbnb will obviously vary depending on location, size, and several other factors, but it’s still nice to get an idea of how much money an Airbnb will make you. On average, Airbnb hosts make $924 a month from Airbnb income alone. If you still haven’t purchased your Airbnb yet, you could factor in some variables to increase profits. Average profit from Airbnb can be estimated with the following criteria:

  • Entire stays assume the occupancy limit of at least four guests. If you list only a private room, Airbnb counts it as two guests.
  • Airbnb also considers the average nightly price, not including expenses, fees or taxes, based on booking data in the location within the last calendar year.
  • Then the price is multiplied by the total number of occupied nights to determine the monthly earnings estimate. The number of nights hosted is an average collected by other hosts in the mentioned area.

Is running an Airbnb profitable

You can use Airbnb’s estimator to get the exact number for yourself. The estimate is just that, an estimate. Follow the tips we list below to increase profits beyond the average.

Popular destinations

Where you plan to host will heavily impact how much money you make from Airbnb. Not all destinations have the same profit margins. Currency, popularity, and travel trends all factor into the amount of money you can make from a particular Airbnb location.

Beach Airbnbs

Airbnbs by the beach make a profit for themselves. If your property is well-located and situated close enough to the beach, you can expect to turn a high profit without having to do much. That doesn’t mean there aren’t negatives like high insurance coverage due to severe weather or a higher cost for maintenance, but the overall is positive and the income rates are high.

Mountainside cabins & Airbnb’s

2005 was the first year that the term “glamping” was ever used, supposedly. In 2016, it was officially added to the Oxford English Dictionary. Fast forward to today, and the rise of glamping, yurts, luxury tents, and off-the-grid experiences are all the rage. This doesn’t mean that city stays are going to become obsolete. It simply means that countryside accommodations are gaining popularity and profitability too.

Increasing income on Airbnb

Airbnb’s in the city

Urban accommodations took a hit after COVID-19. As many people had the freedom to work from their homes, many fled the city to make a new base in quieter, more isolated locales.

Occupancy rates may have dropped, but they didn’t disappear. If you’re looking to purchase an Airbnb, you’ve got to think long-term. It’s true that urban travel has declined, but this won’t last forever. The trends and trajectories of travel indicate that vacations are steadily returning. A serviced apartment offers higher profit margins and that will especially prove to be true as travel continues to pick back up.

Peak season vs. off-season

Another factor to consider is the varying income between peak season and off-season. Some vacation rentals have positioned themselves in a way that they can make income between the two seasons. There are ways to increase bookings in the off-season, such as Black Friday sales for off-season reservations, but ultimately bookings can be unpredictable outside of peak season, and you have to prepare your property and income expectations accordingly.

Cutting costs on utility bills or turning off subscription services in the low months helps to reduce your overall expenses. If your income drops in the off-season, you need to factor that into your expected net income.

Upfront costs

Whether you’re buying a fixer-upper or a ready-to-rent vacation home, you’ll still need to factor in a couple of upfront costs that could impact your initial net income. Airbnbs can be profitable, but there are immediate costs to consider before you can start turning an absolute profit.

Simple things like transferring the bills to your name, advertising in the local newspaper, or hiring lawn services all come at a cost and might include a sign-up fee that will add to your first year of expenses. The best thing you can do to map out these costs is to implement a business plan. Having a business plan in place allows you to budget for expenses while also ballparking what your earnings will be.

Managing Airbnb income expectations

Buying and managing an Airbnb can and should be exciting! This is your opportunity to show off your beautiful property, meet new people, and earn an income! All these things come as a positive, but it’s important to temper certain expectations, so you and your budget won’t suffer.

Variability

Maybe some years, August will be your best month yet, and for others, July will champion. Sometimes, you just never know. You can try to account for important events, festivals, holidays, or weather patterns that attract a crowd, but you’ll find that some weeks are sporadic. Once your Airbnb business matures, you’ll be able to see emerging trends like a spike in reservations around the new year or a low occupancy rate around Christmas time. Reservation rates vary between each vacation rental, but one thing they all have in common: fluctuation.

Is Airbnb profitable

Sometimes bookings are irregular. It’s just something you’ll have to take into account when estimating your expected profits. Give yourself a range of vacancies that you think you’ll experience and adjust accordingly between years.

Cancellations

Just like variations in trending booking periods, cancellations can occur too. It’s not ideal for any rental, but it still needs to be taken into account. If you want to reduce the impact on your overall income, you can implement certain cancellation policies with non-refundable options.

Tread carefully, though, because too strict of a cancellation policy can scare away guests and detrimentally impact your income.

Unforeseen costs

After variability and cancellations, there’s the dreadful possibility of unforeseen costs. They happen. Whether it’s your personal property or your vacation home, things break, bust, and go awry. It’s never ideal, but a portion of your budget should take this into account too.

Preparing for accidents and emergencies will save you from surprise when it comes to calculating your take-home earnings.

How does Airbnb affect property values?

The question of how Airbnb affects property values depends on if you already own your vacation rental or if you’re still in the buying process. Some research has found that a 1% jump in Airbnb listings equates to about a 0.026% bump in prices and a 0.018% increase in local rents. So, if you haven’t purchased your Airbnb yet, consider that areas that are heavily saturated with short-term rentals have a higher property value making your investment a little steeper at first.

How to increase Airbnb Income

The ultimate goal of owning an Airbnb is to get as much out of your investment as possible. Making small adjustments to your vacation rental can have a huge payoff later on.

Buying the property is the most important step, but overlooking the details could cost you potential income. The changes we’ve suggested are going to impress your guests and benefit your wallet in a big way. Follow these 14 tips to increase your Airbnb income immediately!

Carry out improvements

Even simple touch-ups – like a fresh coat of paint or better amenities – can make your place more appealing to guests. Bigger changes such as new floors and improved disabled access can transform your guest experience and lead to much happier clients.

Remember that some upgrades will actually save you money in the long run and increase your bottom line. If your rental property has old appliances or a dated air conditioning unit, you might consider replacing them with more energy-efficient options. This will reduce your utility bill at the end of the month and increase guest satisfaction, which will both lead to higher profits.

How to increase Airbnb income

Offer experiences in your city

Hosts can create unique experiences based on their passions or interests. For example, introducing out-of-town foodies to your town’s restaurant scene. All-around hosts can generate more great reviews and, of course, more cash!

You can prove your area of expertise by publishing guides on your website. Lodgify’s website tool allows you to add multiple tabs on your page for anything you want, be it a restaurant guide, interactive map, or photo gallery featuring the local scenery. You’re not just selling your property; you’re selling an experience.

Accommodate more people in your listing

As mentioned in the section “How profitable is Airbnb,” you’ll see that Airbnb takes occupancy into consideration when estimating profits. The more people you can host, the more money you make!

There are many ways to increase your occupancy without having to build a whole new addition. Look around your property and see what you could transform into a sleeping arrangement. You could add a functional sleeper sofa in your living room and easily have space for two more people or stow a baby crib in the bedroom closet to demonstrate added flexibility. These extras allow you to increase the price per night significantly.

How to increase Airbnb income

Become a co-host and help others manage their listings

This will require more time and extra effort, but it’s definitely worth it! All co-hosts receive a commission, so it’s a nifty source of additional income.

If you’re in an area where Airbnb and other OTAs are popular, start to explore your network. Joining Facebook groups, reaching out to vacation rental owners in the area, or asking friends and family might help you find other hosts looking for a hand.

Having vacation rental software that allows you to delegate tasks and direct all bookings to a channel manager, means you’ll have a lot more time to take care of your property and others too. Why not spend this time co-hosting another Airbnb and making some extra cash.

List all year round

Many hosts make the mistake of only listing their properties at certain times of the year. Try to keep your units listed all the time for the best chance at full occupancy, even when it’s the low season.

You’d be surprised by how many people vacation in the off-season. Travel is becoming a lot more flexible with the rise of remote work and staycations, meaning that off-season stays are gaining traction.

To make full use of your year, market your property accordingly for the low season by offering discounts, packages, or special offers.

How to Increase Airbnb Income

Add amenities

If you’re on your journey to becoming a Superhost, you’ll want to consider adding more amenities to get you there. Amenities set your vacation rental apart from the rest. Not only will it make your stay a bit more unique, but it’ll also increase profits.

Maybe you’re in a more remote area. Guests are much more likely to pay extra for breakfast included rather than having to go out and search for a meal. Every amenity you add is a bonus to guests and thus a bonus to you as you’re able to increase your Airbnb income.


Use dynamic pricing

Not every vacation week is the same and should be priced as such. The first couple weeks of the rainy season aren’t nearly as valuable as your peak week during a summer holiday. It would be impossible for one vacation rental owner to know which weeks are worth more and by how much.

Using a dynamic pricing tool helps to find the perfect pricing to maximize your profits without losing any potential bookings. Lodgify integrates with PriceLabs so your Airbnb listing can be listed for the best price to bring in guests while also making the most profits possible.

Make your listings kid and pet-friendly

Many people like to travel with the whole family – children and pets included. Making it easy for them to find suitable properties from the outset can lead to winning you more bookings – and more revenue as a result.

It’s also important to note that many vacation rentals are not kid-friendly. By going the extra mile and ensuring that the little ones are just as satisfied as their parents, you’ll score some extra points and increase the likelihood of returning guests.

How to increase Airbnb income

Use a professional Airbnb cleaning service

In the age of COVID-19, guests are willing to pay top dollar to ensure that their holiday home is surpassing cleaning standards. By proving that your vacation rental has superb cleanliness, you may need to turn to cleaning professionals.

Guests will always prefer a place that is adequately and professionally cleaned. Even one negative review saying cleaning wasn’t up to scratch can damage future bookings. Hiring a professional cleaner will make sure no spots are missed and your ratings stay top!

If you don’t know where to start, you can find an abundance of vacation rental cleaning apps here in no time.

Cater to business travelers

Business travel has changed quite a bit since the start of the pandemic. In lieu of business fairs and conferences, many workers are opting for “workations” way more than seminars abroad.

This doesn’t mean that business travel has been completely discarded. The age of digital nomads is now, and they’re looking to find places to work and unwind. Taking a few steps to attract workationers, such as adding high-speed internet, can quickly increase your number of bookings.

How to increase Airbnb income

Learn more about Airbnb

Knowledge is power and everyone knows it! Taking the time to learn more about Airbnb and the vacation rental industry will help you increase your revenue significantly. Take some time out of your chaotic day and read guides to truly understand how to run your Airbnb business.

Remember that this platform is everchanging, so to truly stay on top of your estimated income, you’ll need to know what fees and commissions are associated with hosting on Airbnb. Their payment and commission structure changes periodically, so you’ll need to stay informed to fully understand how much you’re making with Airbnb.

Optimize your listing

If you’re not familiar with SEO (Search Engine Optimization), then you’re missing out on a lot of potential bookings. Optimizing your Airbnb listings with the right keywords and phrases can boost your ranking on Google and make it much easier for guests to find your property.

SEO is what is going to bring your Airbnb to the top of the ranks, but it doesn’t end there! SEO is important for other platforms such as Google Travel. Having an SEO-friendly website (like Lodgify) will also help to increase your overall visibility.

Start upselling

An easy way to generate more income is to start upselling services such as luggage storage or special activities. Teaming up with businesses nearby will not only help the local economy but will also lead to a much higher average daily rate for your vacation rental.

One of the major advantages that Airbnbs have over traditional hotels is the dynamic amenity offerings. Look around your vacation rental and see what you already have that you can market for more profit.

How to increase Airbnb income

Use a property management software

An Airbnb vacation rental property management software like Lodgify is one of the easiest ways to increase your income. Not only will you have access to a channel manager that syncs your calendars, bookings, and rates from different online travel agencies into one centralized dashboard, but you’ll also get to use a variety of different tools for automation and task management. Save time, provide the best customer service, and earn a lot more! 

Is becoming an Airbnb host worth it?

Although there are some Airbnb horror stories, they’re few and far between. Most hosts find that Airbnb proves to be an excellent opportunity to meet new people and earn an income. It’s a lot of work, but it doesn’t have to be. Having a vacation rental software that lets you manage all your bookings, rates, calendars, and communication in one place makes the whole process a lot easier. 

Increasing your Airbnb income is far from impossible, but it will take time and a few adjustments. The hosts who make the most money are those with the patience and persistence to succeed and those who devote as much energy to their business as possible.



Contributing Author

Payfully is a platform that allows hosts to get paid faster. Payfully offers hosts the possibility to get paid in advance, instead of waiting for the guest to check-in. Users will then invest these funds back into their properties in order to achieve better reviews, more bookings and of course, higher income!

 

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