Airbnb Superhost Guide: How to set up a guest-friendly space
With the world opening up again after two years of lockdowns and travel restrictions, the travel and accommodation industries are about to receive an influx of customers who are eager to explore.
Airbnbs have become a popular accommodation option due to their affordability, variety, and homely atmosphere. This popularity means that hosts need to invest time in standing out from the competition and take steps to make theirs Airbnb as successful as possible.
It is essential to have positive interactions with guests to ensure that their stay is enjoyable. An Airbnb host should display proper etiquette, such as:
- Being upfront about rules and requirements, including checkout times and clean up instructions
- Being accommodating of guests’ request
- Communicating with guests
- Prioritising a guest’s experience
Provide a safe environment
It is a host’s responsibility to ensure that nothing in their Airbnb poses a threat to guests.
Shelves and bookcases should be secured to prevent injuries, and other hanging objects such as lights, plants, and picture frames should be safely attached.
Fire hazards should be eliminated, and your Airbnb should have a functional fire extinguisher and fire blanket. If you have gas heating or a gas stove, follow safety regulations and install a carbon monoxide detector.
Ensure there are no items that are likely to cause falls, such as damaged carpet, uneven floors, or damaged stairs. Install rails on all staircases and warn guests of any slip hazards, such as tiled floors or stairs that become slippery when wet. If possible, place non-slip mats in these areas, as well as signs to remind guests to be careful.
Provide a hygienic environment
Providing your Airbnb guests with hygienic space is vital to keeping them safe, showing professionalism, and achieving positive ratings and reviews. Between guests, be sure to clean all linen, including bed linen, tablecloths, bath towels, kitchen towels, and couch covers. This will prevent the spread of germs, remove spills and stains, and keep linen fresh.
To kill any bacteria, perform a thorough clean of all rooms, especially the bathroom, kitchen, and toilet. Wipe down all surfaces, including stair rails, shelves, chairs, tables, and benches.
Inspect your property regularly for any signs of mould or mildew, as these can be highly harmful to guests. If you find mildew or mould growing, take the necessary steps to eradicate it. This may include using mould killer in your bathroom or hiring a specialist cleaning service.Airbnb cleaning checklist:
- Change all linen
- Clean bathroom
- Clean kitchen
- Clean communal areas such as dining rooms and lounge areas
- Vacuum and mop floors
- Wipe surfaces such as shelves, railings, windowsills, light switches and coffee tables
- Restock consumables- toilet paper, tissues, bin bags, tea and coffee, soap, etc.
- Ensure everything is working, including lightbulbs
- Restock first aid kit if needed
- Replace fire extinguisher or fire blanket if needed
Provide hotel-quality linen
When staying at an Airbnb, guests are anticipating a comfortable and memorable experience. Invest in luxurious feel white bed linen and plush blanket, absorbent and soft bath towels, hotel quality pillows, and waterproof pillow and mattress protectors to create a luxurious environment for them to return to every night after an exhausting day of exploring.
Not sure which colour of bedsheets is right for your Airbnb space? Read more and find out the psychology behind white sheets and coloured dark sheets.
Replace linen when it becomes worn, stained, or discoloured
Though high-quality hospitality textiles can withstand regular washes, they will still need to be replaced. Replace sheets, quilts, pillowcases, bath towels, tablecloths, and kitchen towels at the first signs of wear, staining, or tearing. Linen that is discoloured or worn looks unprofessional and can deter from a guest’s experience.
Nothing puts off customers more than dirty or unkempt accommodation linen. That is especially true of towels. So make sure the bath linen is not only spotless but soft and fluffy.
If you are looking for linen replacements, then check our popular options of commercial grade linen:
Setting up an Airbnb
1. Decide on your Airbnb space
Is your Airbnb a single room? A private wing in a larger home? Or an entire house? It takes time and effort to run your own Airbnb.
Ensure you have the time to maintain your accommodation facilities, respond to bookings, clean between guests, and keep everything in working order.
2. Determine costs and ongoing expenses
The cost of running an Airbnb is more than simply restocking and cleaning between guests. It is best to create a business plan and determine how much time and money you need to put into your business.
There are upfront costs associated with setting up your own Airbnb business, including obtaining a business license, insurance, and any certifications you may need. There is also the issue of increased utilities. If your property would usually sit vacantly, hosting guests will cause an increase in electricity, gas, and water bills. Consider these costs and factor them into your budget.
You will also need to maintain linen such as towels and bedsheets and replace them when they become old, discoloured, or torn. There is also the cost of cleaning supplies, laundry services, and professional cleaners.
And, of course, you want your Airbnb to be comfortable for guests. You may want to invest in some essentials, such as complimentary toiletries, tea, and coffee, which must be restocked after each guest.
3. Determine your rates – but don’t overcharge!
If your pricing is unreasonable, potential customers will look elsewhere. Make sure you know what your accommodation is worth. Consider:
- Your geographical location – Where is your Airbnb located? Is it near popular tourist destinations? Mere minutes from the station? Convenience can justify a higher price.
- How much do nearby competitors charge? Make sure your rates are similar; otherwise, guests will opt for cheaper alternatives.
- How much do similar properties charge? If you’re renting out a room in a larger house, browse other single rooms to help you determine a reasonable price.
- Are there any special events near you? You may be able to charge more if there’s a concert, festival, or sporting event.
4. Invest in high-quality linen
Select hotel-grade bedding, superior towels, and kitchen items for your Airbnb to provide guests with the luxurious experience they’ve been dreaming of. They will be more likely to return in the future, recommend your Airbnb to friends, and leave positive reviews.
We cannot recommend enough white bedsheets! They're easier to care for and maintain. Not sure where to buy them? Find exclusive and affordable bed linen tips and where to find the best ones here.
Or check out our most popular bedroom linen to date which hotel guest loves:
5. Stock the essentials
Stock up on soap, cleaning products, complimentary toiletries, kitchen essentials such as tea towels and dishcloths as well as tea bags and coffee, and anything else you think your guests need to feel comfortable and looked after.
6. Make sure everything is in working order
Ensure that all your lights and power points are working, that kitchen appliances are in safe and working order and invest in fixing them if they are not. Not only will guests find it frustrating if they can’t make their breakfast or their morning cup of coffee, but also broken appliances can become a fire hazard.
Standing out on Airbnb
Photos are the first thing potential customers look at when deciding on a place to stay.
Nobody wants to stay in a place that looks messy, uncomfortable, or unhygienic, so it is important to invest time, effort, and money into photographing your Airbnb.
- Ensure photos are high-quality and are taken in good lighting.
- Invest in a professional photographer.
- Create a consistent aesthetic.
- Avoid taking pictures where power outlets and cords are visible.
- Thoroughly clean each room before taking pictures.
- Include photos of every room.
- Include photos of the outside of your Airbnb.
- Include a few pictures of nearby locations that may interest travellers, such as a local landmark or café. However, don’t overdo this, as your main goal is to showcase your Airbnb.
Make your outdoors as nice as your indoors
Plant some flowers in the garden and make sure your grass is watered and well kept. This will demonstrate that you care about a guest’s entire experience and value cleanliness and aesthetics.
Be honest with customers
Be honest with customers both in your Airbnb listing and when talking to them one on one. Highlight anything that doesn’t work in your Airbnb, such as a malfunctioning power outlet or broken bathroom lock. Guests will appreciate your honesty.
Acknowledge negative reviews
Though it can be tempting to sweep negative reviews under the rug and forget about them, acknowledging and responding to them indicates that you value your guests’ feedback. Respond politely with either an apology, acknowledgement, or explanation. Take criticism on board and learn from it.
Making your Airbnb successful
Treat your Airbnb like a business
While it may start as a hobby or a side hustle, it is important to treat your Airbnb as seriously as you would your own business. Create a plan and keep track of your expenses and earnings, how much competitors are charging, and how much you need to make it worthwhile.
Keeping track of finances will save you trouble down the track and help you stay organised. In turn, an organised host is more appealing, and you’re more likely to attract guests if you have things under control.
Ask for feedback
Ask guests for a review or feedback. Ask them what they liked, what they disliked, and what they think you can improve on. Then, take this feedback to heart and learn from it. Make adjustments accordingly, such as fixing things, being more flexible with check-in times, adjusting prices, or being friendlier to guests.
Though you shouldn’t let guests walk all over you, it is important to be flexible with things like check-in and out times. Anything can happen when a guest is on holidays, such as a delayed flight, a missed bus, or lost luggage. Even if something else goes wrong on their vacation, make sure your guests know they can count on you.
Courtesy featured photos by SHOP SLO®, Steven Ungermann