7+ years ago my family and I attended our niece’s wedding in Massachusetts. The parents of the bride had rented a huge house and offered everyone in our extended family the opportunity to share the costs and stay together for the weekend. It was wonderful. After years of living our separate lives, we all gathered back for this wonderful occasion. We shared meals, games, walks and spent lots of time laughing, telling tales and just getting caught up.
At one point I asked, “How did you find such a perfect place?”
“Airbnb!” was the reply.
I filed away the answer – having never heard of Airbnb – for a later time. A few months later, my husband and I were considering what to do with the little cottage on our property. Originally intended for my Mom to use when she visited, she never made it down here once she got sick. I had used it as an art studio for a while, we used it for storage, and we’d even put a bed in it so our kids could stay when they visited. I remembered the conversation I had back in June and suggested to my husband we consider doing an Airbnb.
We did the research and decided to ponder it some more before we committed. At Thanksgiving, we once again started talking about the cottage and we decided to take the plunge. I spent Thanksgiving Friday putting together our listing. It went live on Saturday. Then, something happened that blew us away — someone rented our cottage for the month of December starting the very next day.
We ran around like chickens with our heads cut off getting all the things we thought the cottage needed. Because we hadn’t expected such a fast rental, we figured we’d have plenty of time to get the place together. Luckily we had set check-in for 3 p.m., which gave us most of Sunday to prepare for the arrival of our first guests!
We laugh now when we think back to our hosting under fire — we are seasoned pros now. But it’s taken us a while to get things to the lean, mean working machine that is our vacation rental.
This blog, I am hoping will help you, by offering tips, recommendations, and discussions on all things hosts of vacation rentals need to know.