Since its launch in 2008, Airbnb has been changing the way people travel and find accommodations. With its user-friendly website and mobile app, it has become easier to rent out your unused space. However, did you know that you can make money on Airbnb without owning property? In this article, we will explore several strategies to achieve this goal.
We will discuss the Airbnb Experience Host program, co-hosting, partnering with property owners, hosting guests in other properties, and becoming an Airbnb nomad. These strategies can help you earn income through Airbnb without the hassle of owning a property. Here are the benefits of using Airbnb to make money:
- Flexibility – you can work remotely, set your own schedule, and choose the Airbnb income stream that fits your lifestyle.
- Low overhead – no property ownership required; most of the strategies presented here are based on partnerships and contracts.
- Potential high income – some of these strategies can generate a substantial amount of money, depending on your effort and investment.
Become an Experience Host
The Airbnb Experience program was launched in 2016, and it allows hosts to create and offer unique local activities (such as brewery tours, cooking classes, or street art walks) to guests. By being an experience host, you can tap into the vast market of travelers who seek authentic experiences and unforgettable memories. Here’s how to get started:
- Identify your niche – the “experience” should be unique, exclusive, and of high quality. Use your interests, skills, and hobbies to create a memorable experience for your guests.
- Create the listing – use a catchy title, clear and engaging descriptions, and high-quality photos or videos to showcase your experience.
- Pricing – set the price that reflects the value of the experience, and that is competitive with other local experiences.
- Promote – share your listing on social media, among friends and family, and on relevant online forums or groups. Airbnb also has a built-in promotion tool for experience hosts.
Being an experience host can result in a steady flow of income due to the low overhead and high interest of millennials and travelers in experiential tourism. A well-reviewed experience can earn you anywhere from $50 to $500 per event, depending on its length and complexity. Tip: use guests’ feedback to improve your experience and create a loyal following.
Become a Co-Host
Another strategy to make money on Airbnb without owning property is to become a co-host. Simply put, you help property owners manage their Airbnb reservations and guests, and receive a percentage of their rental income.
Here’s how to become a co-host:
- Create a professional profile – highlight your experience in hosting, guest communication, and conflict resolution. Be honest about your availability and expectations from the property owner.
- Search for listings that need co-hosts – you can use the Airbnb search tool and filter results by “co-host opportunities” or search for local Facebook or LinkedIn groups that focus on Airbnb hosting.
- Agree on expectations – clarify the co-hosting responsibilities, such as check-in, check-out, cleaning, and guest communication. Set the commission fee with the property owner based on the agreed-upon workload.
- Provide excellent guest service – make sure that the guests’ needs and preferences are met, and that the property is clean, safe, and ready for their arrival.
Becoming a co-host has many benefits, including earning a steady and passive income based on a percentage of the rental income. Moreover, you can learn from the property owner’s established hosting practices and gain new insights into the local tourism market. Tip: provide personalized recommendations for your guests to increase their satisfaction and leave positive comments.
Partner With Property Owners
If you’re a skilled communicator, negotiator, and marketer, partnering with property owners to manage their listings can be a lucrative and mutually-beneficial strategy. By using this approach, you can benefit from the long-term stability of the rental market while building a profitable relationship with a property owner.
Here are a few tips on how to partner with property owners:
- Identify the right owners – look for property owners who own multiple properties, are absentee owners, or have limited time or knowledge to manage their Airbnb listing.
- Pitch your services – sell yourself as an experienced host, reliable property manager, and profitable partner. Explain how your services can enhance the guest experience and increase the occupancy rate and rental income.
- Sign a profit-sharing agreement – agree on the terms of your partnership, including the allocation of profits and responsibilities. Make sure that the agreement is clear and legally-binding.
- Provide excellent guest experience – as with any other Airbnb listing, ensure that your guests have a memorable and safe stay, and that the property is in top condition.
A partnership with a property owner can be a win-win situation, where both parties benefit from the partnership. You receive a share of the profits, while the property owner benefits from outsourcing the listing management and receiving a higher rental income. Tip: always be transparent and communicative with the property owner, especially regarding the occupancy rate, maintenance issues, and guest feedback.
Host Guests in Other Properties
If you’re looking for a more adventurous strategy, consider hosting guests in properties owned by other people. In other words, you act as a rental manager or broker, and provide services such as cleaning, guest communication, pricing, and listing optimization, among others.
To host guests in other properties, follow these basic steps:
- Research the local market – find properties that have low occupancy rates or that are in high demand due to their location, amenities, or features. Check the local regulations and permits for short-term rentals.
- Reach out to the property owners – contact the owners directly or through Airbnb and propose a partnership agreement. Explain how your services can help them increase their revenue and optimize their listing.
- Agree on the terms – set the percentage of the rental income or a fixed fee, and agree on the length of the partnership, responsibilities, and expectations.
- Provide excellent guest experience – ensure that the guests’ needs are met, and that the property is in top condition. Use your marketing skills to maximize the exposure and appeal of the listing.
Being a rental manager for other properties can be profitable and exciting, as you get to choose the properties you want to manage based on your preferences and interests. Moreover, it can help you build a network of property owners and get better rates and discounts. Tip: Be mindful of your reputation and only host properties with clear ownership and positive reviews.
Be An Airbnb Nomad
Lastly, if you’re a wanderlust or a digital nomad who loves to travel and explore new places, becoming an Airbnb Nomad can be an ideal strategy. This means that you rent apartments, houses, or rooms on Airbnb and sublet them to other guests, while making a profit.
To become an Airbnb Nomad, use these steps:
- Research the local market – find properties that have a high demand, a low occupancy rate, or that are in an upcoming neighborhood. Check the local regulations and permits for subletting.
- Negotiate the rent – contact the property owner and propose a rental agreement at a discounted rate, since you will be subletting the property. Make sure to explain your goals and your track record as an Airbnb host.
- Create a rental agreement – include the expected rent, duration, terms of payment, and other relevant details. Ensure that the agreement is legally-binding and that you have the owner’s consent to sublet the property.
- Provide excellent guest experience – ensure that the guests’ needs are met, and that the property is in good condition. Use your marketing skills to create a unique and memorable experience for your guests.
Being an Airbnb Nomad can be thrilling and profitable, but it also requires careful planning and vetting. You need to ensure that you have a clear agreement with the property owner, that you follow the local regulations, and that you sublet to trustworthy guests. Tip: Use a rental-agreement template and include clauses for emergencies, damage, cancellation, and deposit.
As you can see, there are many ways to make money on Airbnb without owning property. From becoming an experience host to being an Airbnb nomad, you can choose the strategy that fits your goals, lifestyle, and skills. The key is to provide excellent guest service, create a unique product, and establish a profitable relationship with property owners or guests.
Take action today and try out one of these strategies to leverage Airbnb’s market and earn a steady stream of income.