Yes, you read that correctly! I pull in on average $8,500 per month with my AirBnb side hustle.
Now, some months are more than others. And that $8,500 is not profit, it’s just revenue. I pay over $1,000 a month in city and state taxes, plus there’s the mortgage, utilities, cleaning fees which can be over a thousand and general upkeep.
But even with all that, there is profit. A lot of profit! Even if there wasn’t any, I’m purchasing that home for free. Or rather all my AirBnb guests are buying it for me!
So basically it is a no-brainer. I absolutely, completely recommend you try this amazing passive-income, side-hustle yourself. An AirBnb side hustle is a wonderful way to make extra money, and basically start your own business that you otherwise might not have the chance to.
You may have a few questions about an AirBnb side hustle which I’ll answer in this article:
Is renting your home on AirBnb profitable?
How do you make money with AirBnb?
How do I rent my home on AirBnb?
What do you need to do once you’ve listed your home on AirBnb?
Is renting your home on airbnb profitable?
YES! And I have the proof to back up that yes with. I have been operating an AirBnb out of my second house since March of 2016.
Not only does it pay for itself (mortgage, utilities, taxes etc.), I also make a profit 9 months out of the year.
So basically, the guests are buying the home for me first of all. And then, they are providing me with extra income each month.
This is the side-hustle of all side-hustles! Because outside of the first year of set-up, the work involved for me is pretty minimal. This means it is passive-income. I don’t have to do a lot to make this extra money. Which makes it an ideal side hustle!
I have to keep track of the bookings and provide the cleaning lady with a schedule of when it needs to be cleaned, and I have to message the guests.
But even the messaging is super easy, I am using a third party service called Your Porter App to automate my emails and messages to guesst. So without having to do anything, my guests receive the check in instructions the day before arrival automatically.
What do you need to start an AirBnb side hustle?
A house and your listing online! It’s that simple. If you haven’t signed up yet, use this link and you will make an extra $25 with your first booking.
Now, there are some things in the AirBnb side-hustle checklist below that I suggest you do to prepare. And to maximize your passive income earnings.
Here are a few tips that you should follow before you list your home.
Your AirBnb Rental Preparation Checklist:
AirBnb tip #1: Style your space
Make sure your space is stylish. It is extremely important that you have good decor if you want to make money turning your home or extra rooms into a short term rental.
This is actually a fun part. You can get creative. I suggest visiting the airbnb site and checking out the competition. Find some rentals that you love how they look and try to match that style.
You do’t have to spend a lot of money to improve your decor either. Hit up some garage sales! Sometimes the campy AirBnb’s with a retro style or unusual furnishings can be super popular.
Just choose a style and stick with it. Whether it is artistic or retro or modern and chic, having a style to your rental will help you pull in bookings.
AirBnb tip #2: Book a professional photographer
This is a must-do. First of all, real estate photographers are not that expensive. I was able to get awesome, professional photos of my whole airbnb house for just $125.
And the investment is 100% worth it. Make that 150%! Good, professional photos are going to be the number one thing that draws people in and makes them want to book your place.
You just can’t go without the photos, and trust me you will make that money back and then some.
AirBnb tip #3: Check your local laws
When thinking about how to start an AirBnb side hustle, it is important to first understand your local city permitting rules.
Before you list your home, and especially before you purchase any new property for the purpose of turning it into an AirBnb Rental, check your local laws on the rules for operating a “short term rental” property.
I live in Nashville, which has been through a lot of permit rules and changes related to short term rental properties. Ordinances that have been passed now limit what residential zoning allows short term rentals.
The last thing you want to do, is purchase an investment home and then discover after-the-fact that AirBnb rentals are not allowed in the neighborhood.
You may need a city permit to turn your home or any part of it into a short term rental. We are required to obtain a permit here, and if you are caught with an AirBnb listing without a permit, you will be shutdown and your listing removed!
So take the time and do the preparation work to make sure your legal ducks are lined up! There is too much potential money on the line to take any risks that could get you banned.
In addition to permitting rules, you may be required to pay certain local and state taxes. We pay a hotel tax in Nashville to the city each month. And, if you are making more than a certain amount per year, which hopefully you are, you may need a business license. In Nashville, if you make more than $25,000 per year with your listing, you must register and purchase a business license.
As with any business, you need to pay local sales and use tax on your bookings.
Not paying the required taxes again, could cause you to lose your listing completely. Or get caught with overdue penalties and fees.
I heard of a case her in Nashville of someone who was renting their converted garage space on AirBnb without a permit.
Not only did the city catch her, they were able to have AirBnb provide all the dates of her past bookings. Based on that, she was required to pay a $14,000 fine!
So make sure before you start your own AirBnb side hustle that you are abiding by all the local and state laws and taxes.
After your Airbnb listing is live
After you’ve followed steps 1-3 and your listing is live there are a few things to still to do. Staying on top of your AirBnb side hustle will help grow your revenue.
Here are a few tips and tricks I’ve learned from my AirBnb side hustle:
respond quickly to airbnb guests and inquiries
One of the most important things you can do is always respond right away to any messages from potential guests.
Not only doesn’t it make people more inclined to book with you when you are responsive, it can also help your performance on the site. AirBnb keeps track of something called your “response rate.”
The more quickly you respond, the better your score which can affect your position in search results.
Make sure you download the app and have it set so that you can receive notifications on your phone as soon as you receive a message or an AirBnb booking request.
That way you can respond as soon as the messages come through, rather than waiting an hour or so until you happen to see an email message.
Cross List your Airbnb Short term rental
To increase the bookings you receive you should list your site on more than one short term rental site. VRBO.com is another site from which I get a ton of bookings. VRBO stands for vacation rental by owner and they actually own more than one website, such as homeaway.com where they will show your listing to potential renters.
It is very important to sync your booking calendar between AirBnb and VRBO however so that if it books on one site for specific dates, it will then be blocked from booking on the other site.
I have learned the hard way that double bookings can happen and be very painful to fix! You may have to pay cancellation fees and lose your search ranking as a penalty. In one case, I didn’t realize I had double booked the house until a week out from the booking.
In order to make the situation right, I had to help find a new place for the guests and provide some money to cover the additional expense of the only bookings left with availability.
maintain good reviews and scores on airbnb (and vrbo)
AirBnb and VRBO listings live and die by the reviews. Every guest that stays at your short term rental property, no matter what website they book through, gets the chance to leave you a review.
When new potential guests search for properties, the first thing they are going to look at are the reviews. They aren’t going to want to stay at a property that has low stars and a low ranking. Or bad reviews.
So keeping your current guests happy is crucial! And there are a few ways to do that. As mentioned above, always responding quickly to both your prospective and confirmed guests will help.
Not only does it contribute to them leaving a positive review, but many sites like AirBnb will keep track of how quickly you respond and “score” you appropriately. This score can affect how high you appear in search results, so keep that score high in order to help gain more bookings.
Whether you do the cleaning yourself or hire someone, make sure your property is sparkling clean each time a new guest checks in. You know how you want a hotel to look when you check in, your AirBnb property should be just the same.
How clean it is will give your guests their first impression. Plus, when it comes time to review the property, you can be sure they will rate the cleaning.
In addition, having a great cleaning crew means less work for you, which means passive income!
Make sure you are doing everything you can on each site you are listed on to get good reviews for your AirBnb property.
Stay pro-active with pricing on your airbnb home
First of all don’t undercharge! I made that mistake in my first year. I realized later, that I could get a lot more per night that I charged in the beginning. So basically I lost a lot of money by not pricing appropriately.
But on the converse, you also want to lower your prices when appropriate in order to stay fully booked. I would much rather get a lower price for the house during the week, but get an actual booking then it sit vacant.
Several lower priced nights together means a few hundred extra dollars in your pocket each month. Just try to make sure you are pro-active in ensuring your AirBnb short term rental property is consistently booked!
If you follow all these tips and tricks, you can have your own successful passive income, AirBnb side hustle!
With that extra income the options are endless. You can use it to pay down debt, buy another home, invest to make more, or start a new side hustle. You know the saying, “It takes money to make money.”
I used the income from my AirBnb side hustle to buy a second house!
Once you can show two years of tax returns with AirBnb side hustle income on it, it will officially be counted as income for you that can help you get a loan to purchase a new home!
Getting a loan for a house is all about your debt-income ratio so when you can show additional income from your AirBnb side hustle, then you can potentially purchase again.
However you use the income, I can tell you this is a business you must start today! Start your own AirBnb listing today.