From Spare Room to Lucrative Side Hustle: Airbnb Business

How to get started with Airbnb?
How much can I earn with Airbnb?
How to become an Airbnb host?

These are all questions I had been playing with for years… so let me answer them for you.

A few years ago, I was lucky to buy a 100-square metres condo with 3 bedrooms for a decent price.

I completely renovated it and made it into a lovely place.

My home

Living alone, I wasn’t using all of that space — I was using 2 out of 3 bedrooms and the 3rd one was just empty.

During a night out, I was talking to some people who gave me the idea “why not rent out that room?”

Also because I’m living very close to the city centre, this could be a nice opportunity.

Why not rent out that extra room?

Sounds quite scary if you think of it. I mean, I’m living here, my stuff is here, and I’d have to share my living space with other people… right?

Ah… screw that! I decided to give it a try.

In this blog post, I will share my personal journey and how Airbnb has become a significant source of cash flow for me.

Get ready to discover the incredible potential of turning your spare space into a money-making machine!

Airbnb as a guest

I have been using Airbnb for many years now, but always as a guest. I simply love the idea. I’ve stayed at amazing places, discovered how other people live (in poverty and in luxury), and wow — the things I’ve seen!

And I thought: “I can do this too! I can let people experience the loveliness of my recently-renovated home AND the city that I live in!”

So, I created an Airbnb host account.

If you’re serious about giving it a try, you can create one too via here and even receive €23 (which is like $25).

Take awesome pictures

When you’re creating your account, they ask you to enter a lot of information and upload pictures.

Your pictures are what sell your place.

So, either make awesome pictures with your phone, or hire a professional photographer like I did. Here are some of my pictures:

My airbnb pictures

See what I mean? It’s light, its spacious, it just looks… sexy, right?

Always clean!

One of the things that I love the most about hosting an Airbnb (except from earning money) — is that my place is always clean!

  • I hire a cleaning lady which comes now and then, but also I clean up myself
  • Best part: my guests pay for the “cleaning fee”
  • I keep everything minimalistic (because I don’t want guests to meddle with my stuff)
  • I keep everything neat and tidy, which makes the whole place so enjoyable to live in
  • Simplicity = more productivity (for me at least). As you know, I have a lot of side hustles and I need to focus. Not having stuff around means less distractions, and allows me to focus more!
  • Friends, family and guests will love your place and be astonished that it’s so clean. Oh, the number of time I’ve heard the phrase “omg it’s so clean and nice in here! Wow!”… can’t even count it anymore. But that’s nice to hear, right?

So as you can see, a lot of benefits to having a clean and tidy place!

Pricing

Quite important aspect: how much will you ask?

What I did is, I looked at the competition. I checked if there are any other “shared places” in my neighbourhood and compared them.

Next, price accordingly.

I keep my pricing less than €100 per night (usually it’s €98, including cleaning fees) — and I found that this works well.

Go the extra mile

If you get a booking, then make sure everything goes as smooth as possible for your guests.

Reply ASAP to their messages, requests.. make sure they know where to park the car, which bell they have to ring, give them your number, give them tips, advice,… anything.

Just think “what I would I like, if I was a guest?”

Personally, I have created a small folder for my guests where I listed a bunch of things:

  • Nice places to visit (like museums, parcs, stores)
  • Nice breakfast places
  • Nice restaurants
  • Nice bars (coffee, wine, cocktails)
  • More tourist attractions
  • Some personal tips

People really appreciate (and love) the extra effort!

And you’ll notice this will show in the reviews (which is THE MOST IMPORTANT THING!)

Reviews

This might be the most important thing of Airbnb. Your “business” will be made (or destroyed) by reviews.

This is why you gotta go the extra mile.

Make your guests’ stay as comfortable as possible.

And after their stay, if you believe everything went well, “ask for a review”!

Ask for a review!

So far, I’ve been doing quite well:

my reviews

Superhost

In fact, I’ve been doing SO well, that Airbnb made me a Superhost!

There are a few criteria to become a superhost, but if you do your best, this shouldn’t be a problem!

screenshot of my airbnb page

Earnings

Below you can find a screenshot of what I’ve earned with Airbnb this year.

However, this is not accurate — in fact it’s WAY more.

Let me explain:

So far, I’ve had 2 people that wanted to stay for a longer period of time: one person stayed for 6 months, and another one stayed for 3 months.

I just create separate rental contracts for them, for €850 per month, all inclusive.

€850 times 9 months = €7650

So, you gotta calculate the amount below PLUS this… quite nice, no?

Airbnb income

So in total, we can say that I earn more than €10k per year with Airbnb.

€10k per year with Airbnb

That’s a nice little extra, no?

Global reach

I just love Airbnb. The platform is so huge, everyone knows it, and you can be found so easily.

The platform’s ability to connect hosts and guests from all walks of life is truly remarkable and has enriched my hosting experience.

Just make sure to stand out a bit.

Host whenever you want

Another thing I want to talk about, is the possibility to host whenever you want.

For me, I don’t host people when I’m not home. Airbnb just gives me the possibility to close these dates for guests, so people can’t book.

Pretty comfortable.

In the screenshot below, you can see how easy it is to “open or close” a date. You can also easily adjust prices per day. Here, I’m asking 75 per day, which sums up to €98 for the guest, including taxes and cleaning fee.

screenshot of my Airbnb calendar

This flexibility allows me to accommodate my own travel plans, family visits, or any other commitments without worrying about guests.

Some Tips for Success

To finish this post, I’d like to share some tips which I believe can contribute to success.

While Airbnb can be a lucrative side business, it’s essential to approach it strategically.

A few tips that have helped me maximize my earnings and ensure a positive hosting experience:

  1. Create a Welcoming Space: Invest in quality furnishings, amenities, and thoughtful touches that make your guests feel at home.
  2. Optimize Your Listings: Craft compelling descriptions, upload high-quality photos, and highlight the unique features of your space to attract potential guests.
  3. Provide Exceptional Guest Experiences: Respond promptly to inquiries, communicate clearly, and go the extra mile to ensure your guests have a memorable stay.
  4. Build a Strong Reputation: Encourage guests to leave reviews and strive for positive ratings. A solid reputation will attract more bookings and increase your earning potential.
  5. Stay Informed: Keep up with Airbnb’s policies, local regulations, and industry trends to ensure you are compliant and ahead of the game.

Conclusion

What started as a spare room quickly transformed into a thriving side business through Airbnb.

The platform’s global reach, financial rewards, and flexibility have exceeded my expectations and allow me to earn hundreds of euros EXTRA every single month!

Become a host as well!

If you want to become a host as well, you can do so via this link invitation (and get €23 for free).

screenshot of Airbnb hosting program

Good luck!

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Michiel Schuer

FINANCIAL FREEDOM BLOGGER

Enthusiastic about learning new things, side-hustles, and translating my personal experiences into motivational stories.

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