More people are waking up to the benefits of running an Airbnb. While this side hustle won’t necessarily make you a millionaire overnight, it can be a fantastic way to increase your income without requiring too much work on your part. Becoming an Airbnb host is a great gig for a lot of people, but it’s not for everyone. And it’s not perfect.
Just as there are advantages to becoming an Airbnb host, there are also disadvantages. Deciding whether this should be your side hustle involves comparing the pros and cons to determine whether it suits your situation! Check out the reasons for and against below.
10 Should Be: You Don’t Have To Chase People For Payment
One of the major advantages of running an Airbnb over being a traditional landlord is that it’s much easier to get paid as an Airbnb host. With this gig, you have a lot of control over how you’re paid, and most of the time, you’ll receive the money before your guests arrive.
With a traditional rental property, on the other hand, you could end up having to chase someone for failing to pay. Not all Airbnb guests are perfect, but this is one problem that you won’t have to run into as a host.
9 Shouldn’t Be: You Have To Be More Hands-On Than A Traditional Landlord
The downside to running an Airbnb is that you’ll probably have to be a lot more hands-on than you would have to be as a traditional landlord. Because the time that guests stay with you is typically shorter, you’ll have to spend a lot more time cleaning and maintaining your property.
The Wallet Wise Guy explains that there are other admin duties to think about too. Although it is mostly a form of passive income, you still have to take the time out to respond to messages and communicate with your guests.
8 Should Be: You Get To Meet People From All Over The World
If you enjoy meeting people from all walks of life, then this gig might just be for you! Naturally, as an Airbnb host, you’ll get to meet travelers from all over the world you want to come and stay at your property. Though you might just see them briefly to drop off and pick up the keys, it’s still a great opportunity to meet new people. In this way, being an Airbnb host is a lot more fun than being a traditional landlord.
Of course, if you like meeting people, you could be more involved with your guests. Some hosts offer homemade breakfast and other services.
7 Shouldn’t Be: Your Home May Get Damaged
Most guests that you encounter will probably be dream guests, especially if you only accept guests who have positive reviews on the site. But it still is possible to get stuck with horror guests who cause damage to your property. This can happen when guests use your home to host parties or smuggle in more customers than was agreed upon.
There is the Airbnb Host Guarantee program, but this still might not cover all the damage that is incurred, and you could lose out. Like anything, being a host comes with a little risk.
6 Should Be: You Can Earn More Money Than Renting To A Tenant
If you have a room or property that you’re considering renting out, one of the reasons you should choose to become an Airbnb host is because you can earn much more money than you can through traditional renting.
Hotels (especially luxury hotels!) cost more than mortgage repayments and rental payments, so Airbnb accommodation should be no different. If you are in a location where there is high demand and you're essentially providing a room that mirrors a boutique hotel, you can really set the price as high as you like. Your earning potential could be much higher through an Airbnb as long as the circumstances are right.
5 Shouldn’t Be: There Are Taxes, Fees, & Licenses To Think About
Although becoming an Airbnb host is mostly an easy process, there are still some fine-print details to think about. It is free to run a listing for your property, but you will have to pay a service fee to Airbnb for each reservation that you score.
There may also be taxes to think about, depending on where you live. According to Investopedia, it’s actually illegal to rent out your property as an Airbnb in some areas, so it’s always important to do your research. It might also be necessary to obtain a license.
4 Should Be: It’s Relatively Easy To Get Started
It’s true that there are fees, licenses, and taxes to think about when becoming an Airbnb host. But other than that, it’s super easy to get started. And if you have a property that’s ready to go, you can really get going in a matter of weeks (or days!).
Tyler Cruz explains that the process involves creating your listing, adding photos and a description, and then waiting for approval. Once you’ve been approved, you’re ready to go, and could even have your first reservation the next day. In this way, it really is a quick and easy way to make money.
3 Shouldn’t Be: Aesthetics Matter More When Your Property Is An Airbnb
The one thing you do have to think about as an Airbnb host that wouldn’t be a problem to traditional landlords is aesthetics. As the Airbnb market is competitive, your property won’t get the reservations that it could unless it is furnished and polished. This might mean that you have to spend some money prettying the place up.
If your property has other enticing aspects, like a beach view or a central location, aesthetics won’t matter as much to everyone. But as a general rule of thumb, most travelers will want to stay in a place that looks nice, so it’s up to you to do that work.
2 Should Be: It’s More Flexible Than Having A Long-Term Tenant
The major pro to having an Airbnb guest over a long-term tenant is that you have so much more flexibility this way. When you have a tenant, you can’t just kick them out the weekend that you need your property or your room. But as an Airbnb host, you can block off certain dates in advance in case you need the space for another reason.
This can be a major advantage if you have friends or family coming to stay and you’d like to offer them a place rather than taking them to a hotel. Or if you need to repair something in your home but can’t afford to do it right away, you can simply block off the dates until it’s ready to be repaired.
1 Shouldn’t Be: You Could Annoy Your Neighbors
A word of warning: Not all neighbors are cool with living next door to an Airbnb. Guests can be annoying by being loud, coming in and out at all hours, or even parking in inconvenient places on the road. So some neighbors could report you to the council or your strata (which is why it’s always important to make sure running an Airbnb is legal where you live!).
Some neighbors might also be against the idea of an Airbnb in the building or the street because they might be fueling housing crises in particular cities.