As a host, there are some things that you need in order to list your property on a site like Airbnb. In terms of Airbnb requirements, they are quite basic – a property, a listing page, a connected bank account, and a set of contact details.
According to the Airbnb website, as a host, you’re required to:
- “Be responsive: Keep your response rate high by replying to inquiries and trip requests within 24 hours
- Accept trip requests: Make guests feel welcome by accepting requests whenever you’re available
- Avoid canceling on guests: Take cancellations seriously and try to avoid them—they’re a huge inconvenience
- Maintain a high overall rating: Guests expect a consistent level of quality, no matter where they book”.
The above-mentioned are things that the platform requires, but we think the list needs a few additional points. As a host, you have a duty to provide a service that brings a good name to your chosen platform. Why? Well, if your chosen platform gets a good name for high levels of service, you’ll benefit from higher booking rates.
These are the few things we’d add to the list of Airbnb requirements:
- Be understanding: We know that the pandemic caused a wave of cancellations, but that does not mean that showing some understanding is a bad thing. Choose a cancellation policy, and stick to it unless there are extenuating circumstances.
- Be flexible: If your guests want to shift their booking back one day, and your calendar is open, then there is no real need to be difficult about it! Changing bookings is tiresome, but being flexible with your guests will likely result in a better rating!
- Be prepared: It will always pay off to be prepared for anything in the vacation rental industry. Having emergency supplies like flashlights, batteries, a first aid kit, and a fire extinguisher can be a literal lifesaver.
- Be insured: Vacation rental insurance is so important. You need insurance to protect yourself and it really is that simple.
Then we come to Airbnb requirements for guests. Of course, you can operate as a vacation rental host without these Airbnb requirements. However, they’ll certainly help protect you and your property!
These are the things that we think hosts should request and expect from their guests.
- ID Verification: It’s not too much to ask that people verify their identity before they request a booking at your listing. If they are not ID verified, you can of course request that they complete that process before you approve their booking. We think it’s pretty important to know who you’re renting your property to!
- Security Deposit: A security deposit should be a no-brainer. Sadly, in today’s day and age, you can’t always depend on people to respect your property and its contents. Charging a security deposit means that if any damage does occur, you don’t have to fight to get money out of your guest, which nearly always proves impossible.
- Rental Agreement: Asking your guests to sign a rental agreement enables you to hold them accountable for any rule breaks. If you’ve charged a security deposit and your house rules state no parties, then it’ll be easier to defend your decision to keep some or all of their deposit to your chosen platform.
- House Rules: Asking guests to read and agree to your house rules can also help you if the guests damage your property. If you go even further and include a clause in your rental agreement that guests need to read, understand and adhere to your house rules, then you’re well protected in case of a damage claim dispute.