If you’ve been making every excuse in the book to not get started with Airbnb you’re not alone! Anxiety and fear are all natural feelings when embarking on any new journey. Having doubts and feeling scared are all completely understandable feelings…. I felt the same way when I first started hosting in my personal home and again when I started hosting outside my home with vacation rentals. After all, you’re going to be starting an unknown venture and it can seem overwhelming.
I know this can be scary but the hardest part is getting started. I thought I’d share with you some of the reasons why well-meaning people, just like you, are afraid to start their Airbnb business.
“I don’t own any real estate”
The wonderful thing about hosting on Airbnb is that you don’t have to own any real estate in order to have an Airbnb business. If you have properties that you own, that’s great! The model I use and teach my students is to rent other people’s properties. This is much more scalable than purchasing properties and it gives you a whole lot more flexibility when it comes to choosing a location.
“I don’t think I’ll make very much money”
One of the reasons why people procrastinate is because they don’t take the time to figure out how much money they can actually make. You might be thinking that this won’t be worth your time.
First, I’ll say that I’ve yet to earn less than $500 per month on any of my properties. Even on a furnished property where rent costs are significantly higher because of the furnishings. $500/mo would be great to start. But how much will your listing actually make?
The quick and dirty way
A very rough way to figure out how much you can earn is to look at the amount other hosts in your neighborhood charge and multiply that by 21 nights. This is a quick and dirty way of forecasting revenue. Just know that most hosts still don’t price according to demand so you’ll want to price weekends higher.
The more accurate way
A more accurate way to do see how much you can earn would be to determine an average weeknight price and an average weekend price (Friday and Saturday nights) based on the listings you see in your target area. Multiply your weekend price by eight because weekends normally have a 100% occupancy rate. Then multiply the weeknight price by 15 (roughly a 70% occupancy rate). For example, if you determine the weekend night price is $150 and the weeknight price is $70:
Weekend nights: $150 x 8 = $1,200
Weeknights: $70 x 15= $1,050
70% occupancy is my conservative forecasting occupancy rate by the way. I normally only have 0-2 nights vacant per property per month. On average, I’m seeing profits of $1,100 per month for a 1 bedroom property.
“It’s going to take me forever to set up”
That’s another common misconception about getting started with Airbnb. New hosts want to know how long setup is going to take. The good news is that if you’re starting from an empty property you can set up your listing in just one weekend.
I’ve been able to set up (from scratch) a 1 bedroom property in one weekend by gathering used quality furniture ahead of time. I gather everything I need like beds, dining tables, sofas, etc. and store them in my garage until move-in day. I’ve also set up a furnished property in only 4 hours. The key is having a checklist with everything you need to set the place up!
“I should have started sooner”
I always hear new hosts saying that they wish they would have started sooner… The sooner you get started the sooner you will be making money. Every month that goes by is like you’re leaving $1,000 or more on the table for someone else.
There was one host I knew who had been considering hosting for two years – 24 months! She’s now profiting $3,000/mo. If you think about it, $3k x 24 months = $72,000 that she wasn’t able to earn because she waited. The compound effect can work for you or against you. It’s said the best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The second best time is TODAY!
Things don’t have to be perfect
Don’t worry about things being perfect. As long as you accurately disclose your amenities, your guests will know what to expect and you will get bookings.
You’re not the only one
I know getting started can be scary but just know that you’re not alone. I can help you. There are lots of hosts out there who felt the same way you did when they started and they quickly realized they should’ve started sooner.
I’m one of them! I waited until I lost my job back in 2015 to get started. I invited strangers into my home—that was very scary at first… Until they arrived and turned out to be great people. I was afraid again in 2017 when I started hosting outside of my home. All the magic happens outside of your comfort zone. Why not get started now?
There’s no time like the present!
P.S. Comment below or shoot me an email to with what’s holding you back from getting started. I really wanna know!