Now that Vancouver has altered its stance on Airbnb, many property owners are wishing to prepare their properties to host short term rentals. Depending on the rental’s location, there is a lucrative opportunity to get involved. Aside from location, condition and atmosphere of your space are going to play a heavy role in your ability to increase your nightly rate. A few ways you can make your space Airbnb friendly are to stock your home with amenities including clean sheets and towels, purchase comfortable attractive furniture and make sure your space is clean, bright and shows well in photos.
Amenities and Sheets:
Depending on the volume of guests you intend to host, consider making a run to Costco to stock up on soap, detergent, coffee/tea and possibly some snacks. Find a fair deal on towels and sheets at Winners or Bed, Bath and Beyond and consider replenishing your closet and bed with clean linens for your guests. A huge draw is your visitor knowing they will have a clean space to rest their head after a long day.
Pro tip: Post in your ad that you have fresh, clean sheets.
This is where you begin competing with the extra $30 or $40 more hotels may command to lure in would-be vacationers. The little things are what make your Airbnb guests stay a great one and the decision to stay in your space vs the downtown hotel. Also, having access to a kitchen is a great incentive to save money as your guests can make their food. Make sure your kitchen is semi chef friendly and easy to cook a quick meal while on the go.
Furniture and Ambience:
Even though many of your clientele will be out of towners spending lots of their time downtown and outdoors. More and more, companies are trying to cut down on their bottom line. Therefore, many of your guests will be traveling for business. The fact is, a large chunk of your guests will be a business professional looking to either wind down after a long day on the couch or prop up a laptop for an hour or two more. Invest in some nice furniture to accommodate your guest’s comfort. You don’t have to buy the $3000 couch, but you should be aiming for an 8 out of 10 in the comfort department; skip the cheap Swedish couch on this one.
Pro tip: Avoid light-coloured furniture to prevent staining from heavy traffic.
Remember when you saw photos of your property for the first time on realtor.ca, it probably looked huge and was decluttered. Avoid outright lying in your photos, but make sure the photos you do put up are high quality and declutter your space to make it look larger. The spaces that show the best are ones with unstained white paint (eggshell or satin finish), this is because white helps reflect the natural light, creating the appearance of a bigger space. Also, consider painting your trim and baseboards a lighter colour than your walls. Doing so will make the walls appear further back making your home seem even larger.
Pro tip: Add in a full-size mirror on a large wall to create depth
Make sure your strata are ok with you renting your property out short term, many have bylaws preventing this activity and it’s important to make sure you comply. Further, the City of Vancouver requires you to obtain a short-term rental license for $51. Airbnb works with the City to reinforce this, so it’s easy for Strata’s and the City to track your activity.