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5 hacks for hosting on Airbnb

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  1. Create a house manual. Like fitting into your favorite pair of worn jeans, some of the most successful Airbnb properties are imperfect. These quirks bring personality to a house but also need to be explained to guests. Creating a detailed house manual that clearly spells out everything someone needs to know about your property will help answer a lot of questions before they ever reach your phone.
  1. Don’t provide white linens. When it comes to linens, all white is too stagnant for the Airbnb lifestyle. I like paisley patterned sheets, houndstooth designed pillowcases and an assortment of vibrant colored towels. Having multi-colored towels will help guests reuse their same towel instead of just grabbing a fresh white one every time they shower. This will reduce the amount of laundry for turnover and free up some time to do what you love.

Our Airbnb lifestyle is exemplified through our western heritage.

3. Have an extra set of linens. One of the most time consuming duties associated with having a short-term rental is doing all the laundry. Having a second set of clean linens and towels ready to reset the house will prevent you from having to wait for laundry to finish before clearing the house for your next check-in. For extra free time, outsource your laundry services to a local linen provider.

4. Create a self check-in option. Getting people checked into your home can be frustrating, when guests are coming from out of town you may be on standby for hours waiting for their arrival. Create a self check-in option by securing a lockbox with a house key somewhere easy to find outside your home. Ta-da, you just saved yourself a bunch of future headaches.

5. Underprice and over-deliver. For the best Airbnb reviews, underprice and over-deliver. You want good reviews, and countless numbers of them. One element you have direct control over is pricing. Although it is tempting to get the highest price per night for bookings, underpricing is the easiest way to generate better reviews.

It’s all about the details when creating the perfect Airbnb.

Another big helper is over-communicating the inconveniences of your property. No house is perfect—spell this out clearly in the listing description and again in your house manual. People are less likely to complain when they have read the downfalls beforehand. For extra credit, offer a free-cancellation policy. Not only will it give potential guests an added piece of mind, it will increase your ranking on Airbnb’s SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Being flexible and less greedy will lead to better reviews and an overall more successful Airbnb property.

If all this hacking still sounds like too much work, maybe it’s time to consider outsourcing your Airbnb property management. There are a handful of local companies dedicated to getting your place booked, and providing your guests with a hotelier level of hospitality, all while potentially earning you more money.

Headwaters Hosting works with homeowners, property managers and hosts to provide a turn-key service for running Airbnbs in Big Sky.

Visit for more information.

The Outlaw Partners is a creative marketing, media and events company based in Big Sky, Montana.

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