First timer’s guide to Airbnb and VRBO


Here’s the lowdown on what it takes to earn extra income on your unused space or vacation home with Airbnb or VRBO.

Listing your home on Airbnb or VRBO can be a great way to earn income on space you use only part-time. You can choose to rent out your entire home, a section of your home or even just a room in your house. Airbnb has built a global network of trustworthy property owners and renters. Reviews are of both properties and renters, adding extra peace of mind for property owners. Hosts can also choose to rent only to guests who have been ID verified by Airbnb or VRBO. And they even offer Host Protection Insurance, providing liability coverage of up to $1 million.

Before you list, you’ll want to check for any laws and restrictions on short-term rentals in your city and state as well as any specific to your community, especially if you are part of a HOA or co-op. Then decide how much you want to charge per night for your space. A great way to figure out how much you should charge is by looking up comparable Airbnb / VRBO listings in your neighborhood. Payments are handled through Airbnb’s / VRBO’s secure website, so there are no worries about bad checks or fraud issues.

Once you’ve decided to list, it’s time to make your space as attractive as possible to potential renters. Remove clutter and take high-resolution photos of your space during the day. You’ll also want to create your Airbnb / VRBO profile, letting your guests know a little about you and your connection to your property. Your profile, photos and description of your property will all help get your first reservations rolling in. And as your positive reviews grow, so will your bookings.

See some of the top rated Airbnb properties in NYC, Seattle, San Diego and Chicago.

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