If you’re a regular homeshare host and you find it pretty easy to get bookings, you might be tempted to just rest on your laurels during the holidays and let the dollars roll in. Or, if you’re a newbie, the holidays probably seem like the right time to get in the game and make some easy cash.
Either way, with a little extra effort you could make a lot of extra money.
Why not take advantage of this busy travel time of year? People actually expect to pay more for holiday travel, so if you’ve been in this game for a while, don’t be afraid to up your prices a little. Conversely, if you’re jumping in now, it’s a great time to keep prices low so you’re competitive, get booked for the holidays fast, and pull in some 5-star ratings right off the bat which will help you in the long run.
Here are few more homeshare hosting things to keep in mind as we head into the holidays that could help fatten your wallet (instead of your waistline!).
Raising your rates
Check out your local competition, say nearby hotels or other rentals, and see how much their rates increase for the holidays and you can do a similar increase. If you’re in a popular area and you get great ratings on Airbnb or similar sites, and you put in some extra effort for the holidays, you can get away with four to six times your normal rate. However, if you haven’t been renting for long, use this time period to keep your rates on the lower end to beat the competition and start to build your reputation.
Playing to your strengths
During the holidays, or any busy travel season, potential guests are still looking for the same basic things they’re always looking for: safety, convenience, cleanliness, and price. (If you have the first three you can price yourself a bit higher, if you don’t, then price yourself a bit lower.) Consider those cost of entry. Highlight what you do offer that could make you stand out, such as super-fast Wi-Fi, a well-stocked kitchen, air conditioning if you’re in a hot climate or fireplace for a traditional holiday colder climate, and of course nearby grocery stores, shopping areas, and any holiday events or activities.
Comfort and joy
Do you want to go a bit above and beyond to beat out the competition during this very competitive time? It doesn’t take much, just some forethought. Travelers are mostly interested in local culture and traditions. So whatever that means for you and your area, go for it! Steer clear of any religious connotations, but everything else is fair game. A holiday tree, lights, specific color schemes, greenery, special recipes … done the right way, it’ll make any guest feel they’re part of the family. Include a welcome letter that explains some of your family traditions, too. Another nice touch is to research what the holiday traditions are in the area from which your guests are traveling from, and leave them a token to remind them of home. They will appreciate the gesture and the fact that you took the time to get them a gift.