Airbnb can be used for about any kind of stay; from short term vacations of two or three days to long term stays of a month or even more. However, a drop in bookings due to the coronavirus pandemic in 2020 has led to the popularity of Airbnb long-term rentals for both guests and hosts more than any time before.
Extended Stay Feature, enables guests to rent long-term rentals on Airbnb for twenty-eight days or more has been highly appreciated by travellers with work or study purposes like college students, interns, and people working from home, and safe accommodation and self-isolation seekers like first responders and front-line medical workers.
Where travel is restricted, like slower travel periods during the COVID-19 pandemic, Airbnb monthly stays option steps into the stage as a more stable strategy which seems like easy money and peace of mind for the hosts and cosy accommodation for their guests.
Airbnb long-term rental is a great solution for the hosts to guarantee a reliable revenue stream, keep their rental business afloat during quieter months, and be able to tackle their mortgages and arbitrage leases. They can attract more bookings by offering monthly discounts to their prospective guests, and increase their occupancy rates.
Here are some instructions every vacation rental or serviced apartment manager should take into consideration to optimise their listing(s) for Airbnb long-term rentals.
1. Learn about Your State Laws and Local Regulations
Before you rent out long term, review the laws of the state and the local government of your property, and make sure it doesn’t violate them. Airbnb long-term rental is prohibited or restricted to some regulations in several countries for protecting the local property business or other reasons. You can’t just rely on Airbnb; it’s all on you to take care of local Airbnb regulations and tax rules for long-term rentals in your community.
2. Set Long-Stay Discounts
Set a reasonable weekly or monthly discount to attract guests who are seeking long-term rentals. Guests who search for long term accommodation also look for more affordable listings with monthly discounts appearing next to their total price. Some guests may even take a further step and contact you to bargain their ideal price and ask for more reduction.
3. Add Long-Term Stays Cancellation Policy to Your Listing
Airbnb has a specific cancellation policy which is automatically activated for bookings of twenty-eight nights and more. Under this policy, long-term reservations are refundable 48 hours after the booking confirmation in case it is cancelled at least twenty-eight days before check-in. More than 48 hours after the booking confirmation, the booking will still be refundable except for the first month of the stay. Adding this strict cancellation policy to a listing can firmly protect hosts from the loss of bookings that might happen as a result of blocking the dates by a long-term guest.
4. Screen Your Guests Carefully
Evaluate your potential guests and try to sift out the troublemakers who might damage your rental and its reputation. As your guests are going to stay in your property for a longer period of time, it’s at your own expense to find out the likelihood they will meet your rental’s terms and conditions and decide to accept, reject or agree to deal with them under particular conditions. (Read our blog post ‘All You Need to Know About Tenant Screening’ to learn more about guest screening.)
5. Don’t Forget to Sign a Rental Agreement
As there are no tenant leases for Airbnb long-term rentals, require you prospective guests to sign rental agreements before confirming a booking. You can ask your guests to sign the agreement on their arrival or send them a digital copy of your contract in your regular communications through the Airbnb extranet and get it signed via some signing software. Think about all the things that are likely to go wrong and consider their possible outcomes. Specify the rules regarding overstays and evictions.
6. Make Sure You Have the Essential Amenities for Longer Stays
Put yourself in the shoes of people who are most likely to book your property for a long-term stay. Figure out who they might be, and what facilities they may need. Some of the most popular amenities among long-term rental seekers are a fully equipped kitchen, laundry equipment, cleaning supplies and high-speed Wi-Fi.
7. Write a Thorough House Manual for Your Property
Your long-term guests will surely need a detailed house manual which can provide them with instructions and recommendations for their day-to-day living at your property. Make sure that your house manual includes the instructions for cleaning. As the guests staying for a longer time are usually in charge of doing the laundry, taking out the garbage and buying cleaning supplies, you must be specific about the cleanliness orders and their responsibilities during their stay.
Long-Term Rental Versus Short-Term Rental
When guests search for accommodations for twenty-eight days or more, Airbnb will automatically show them the monthly rates rather than the nightly tariffs, so the listings are available to book both for short-term and long-term stays, and it is just on the hosts to decide whether or not to accept the guests who want to stay for a longer period of time. Airbnb long-term rental helps property managers earn the income they expect, with a single guest rather than having to manage several short-term rentals and dealing with guests of different types; however, both methods have their own benefits, as well as downsides. Let’s look at each way’s pros.
Airbnb Long-Term Rental
Steady Income Stream
All the property managers want to receive as many bookings as they can to enhance their revenue; nevertheless, Airbnb long-term rental will provide hosts with more predictable and reliable but lower income during quieter months. As the guests who book a property for a month or more are supposed to pay upfront, the property managers will receive their income on a monthly basis.
Dealing with one single guest means fewer operational tasks. Vacation rental owners or managers will save time and money as they have less housekeeping and management responsibilities, and are welcoming a fewer number of guests.
As there aren’t any monthly discounts for this type of stay, the vacation rental managers can earn more revenue from short-term renters; however, due to seasonality, the income may not be as stable as Airbnb long-term rentals.
More Guest Reviews
You can earn more reviews from short-term bookers. This is especially of considerable significance for the hosts who have just joined the platform.
Less Property Wear and Tear
Short-term rental bookers are usually vacationers who are staying at your property for business or leisure purposes. They come to explore the city and enjoy themselves. In most cases, these types of travellers usually spend fewer hours at home and just make use of the basic amenities. As a result, the home gets less wear and tear and needs less maintenance and repair, unless you run into the party-type guests.
Renting out with Airbnb for short-term stays is quite commonplace in over 200 countries and regions all around the world, but why do people prefer Airbnb to traditional real estate agencies for renting long-term accommodation?
Airbnb long-term rental attracts guests seeking stays that are somewhere in between short and long-term rentals but don’t want to get locked into year-long leases. Airbnb is a global website with an intensive database of rentals and accommodation options around the world. It offers guests a wide range of listings to choose from with meticulous photos, lists of amenities and house rules, as well as discounted prices.
Plus, travellers can find full-service furnished units with already-connected internet and other amenities they need by reading the detailed reviews of the past guests without any need to get in touch with the real estate agents. Moreover, as the rent on Airbnb listings is all-inclusive, the guests don’t need to worry about handling utilities and bills.
On the other hand, hosts need no real-estate agencies, advertisement and promotion for their properties outside of Airbnb to bring renters in and be protected under Airbnb terms and conditions.
Final Tips about Airbnb Long-Term Rental
- You must decide whether to rent out your property for highly profitable short-term stays or for longer terms at discounted rates depending on where your property is located, the local demand, and your rental’s potential.
- In case you are new to Airbnb, start hosting with short-term bookings until you get the hang of dealing with Airbnb and guests, and then go for long-term rentals.