70 | How Hostfully Can Help You Reach More Customers & Guarantee a Great Guest Experience | with Margot Schmorak

Uncategorized Jul 02, 2020


What if you could simplify the way you run your short term rental business?

Margot Schmorak is the CEO and co-founder of Hostfully, a property management software company that services thousands of properties worldwide and helps you do just that. Hostfully helps to automate guest communications, distribution across multiple platforms, and integrates with other companies in the vacation rental space. They empower property managers with an essential platform to be able to make choices about how they run their business.

One of the biggest opportunities for property managers is to do your own direct marketing. Google will be coming in soon and they will go around many of the top booking platforms such as Airbnb. You need to be prepared for that instead of trying to react. Working with a company like Hostfully will help you structure your data in a way that Google can read it.

There are so many variables when it comes to growing your business: the regulatory environment, the...

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69 | Co-Hosting From Part-Time to Full-Time Salary & Beyond

Uncategorized Jun 25, 2020


Are you interested in hopping into the rental world full time but unsure of where to start or how the numbers will shake out?

The world of co-hosting is an amazing place to start, especially if you are interested in the short term rental or vacation property world. Your income can be whatever you make it. We’re going to dive into the exact numbers and hours invested into a property and outline how you can make supplemental income all the way to full-time income in order to replace your career.

Keep in mind, our numbers are based on our Cincinnati, Ohio market. These numbers are also going to be conservative, based on our slow season. So let’s break down one example:

Basic 1 Bed/1 Bath.Tastefully decorated, not dated. Basic amenities (parking/wifi). 

$2000/mo Short Term, $1100/mo Long Term

Monthly Time Commitment:

  • 4 hours communicating with guests and updating your listing
  • 2 hours coordinating with your cleaning team
  • 1 hour research and development
  • 48...
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68 | Why Aligning with Your Clients is Essential to Your Business

Uncategorized Jun 18, 2020


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When people talk about starting a new business, one topic that doesn’t get enough attention is choosing your customers — but this is imperative to running a successful business.

When we talk about customers here, we’re referring to hosting clients — the owner of the property who you are partnering with. Co-hosting is one of the biggest opportunities out there for building a business, and you can start making money right away. But your success in that depends greatly on who you choose to work with.

What happens when you choose clients who you are incredibly aligned with? When your clients know who you are, like you, and trust you, they let you do your job and trust in your expertise. You’ll also be more likely to have the properties and amenities match your level of standards. And best of all, they will help you enhance your brand, leading to a positive reputation you can build upon.

So how do you find these aligned clients?...

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67 | What if We Get Another Stay-at-Home Order This Fall? How to Prepare | with Steve Trover

Uncategorized Jun 11, 2020


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Things are opening back up in the US! While we all take a moment for a collective sigh of relief, remember that COVID-19 hasn’t gone anywhere just yet. How can you prepare yourselves for a second wave and potential future stay-at-home orders?

To talk about that we have returning guest Steve Trover. He’s been in the vacation rental industry for over 20 years, so we lean on him and his expertise in preparing for the future. Nobody saw COVID-19 coming, but now that it’s here we have a chance to look ahead and prepare for what could potentially come in the future.

If you’re going to be in business, you have to be prepared for disruptions to occur. Make sure you have capital set aside so it doesn’t put you out of business.

You also need to be prepared to pivot. If we have another wave, we will likely see short term rentals halt — but we will still see mid- to long-term rentals be completely viable. Think about what that...

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66 | The Hosts of HGTV’s “Stay or Sell” Open Their First Short-Term Rental | with Brad & Heather Fox

Uncategorized Jun 04, 2020


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How do you juggle owning two businesses, starting your first short term rental, and filming a TV show at the same time?

Brad and Heather Fox are a married couple who own Fox Homes & Realty and Foxwell Design. Brad is a general contractor and broker and Heather is a designer. They were crazy enough to take on their first short term vacation rental while filming a show for HGTV.

They have been living and breathing real estate for the past 15 years. They had started as realtors before moving on to renovation and eventually starting their own general contractor company. They decided they wanted a vacation home — but they wanted others to help them pay for it. That meant that short term rentals were going to be their next adventure.

Not only did they decide to open a short term rental while operating two businesses, but due to delays, they ended up building it while filming the first season of HGTV’s Stay or Sell. They share the story of how...

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65 | Short-Term Rental Tips from a Superhost + Design Influencer | with Catherine Williamson

Uncategorized May 28, 2020


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How do you scale renting a single room into a whole fleet of short-term rental properties? That’s exactly what today’s guest did.

Catherine Williamson is one half of the very popular blog Beginning in the Middle. She and her husband are designers, renovators, and Airbnb Superhosts. In 2013, they moved from New York City to Columbus, Ohio, where they noticed a gap in the market for unique, well-designed spaces. They decided to pursue their passion for design and hospitality and have been working together to restore old homes ever since.

While living in New York City, the pace of the city started to burn them out and they questioned the kind of life they wanted to live. They decided to move to Columbus to have a better life. While looking at their finances, they made the decision to rent out a room on Airbnb to make a little extra money — and they didn’t expect how rewarding it was going to feel.

After a few months of renting out a...

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64 | 5 Ways to Pivot Your Airbnb During Downtime

Uncategorized May 21, 2020


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Is downtime in your business leaving you feeling down?

Don’t worry! We’re going to outline 5 things you can do during a downtime — whether it’s a slow season, you need to take a break from hosting, or for any other reason — to make your listing even better when you’re rarin’ to go.

  1. Comb your listing. Look at it with a fresh perspective as if you were a guest seeing it for the first time. Make sure your pictures are up to date. Revisit the message that gets sent before a guest book a stay. Think about your house rules.
  2. Revisit your pricing strategy. Use a pricing tool such as Pricelabs, Wheelhouse, or Beyond Pricing.
  3. Do some competitor research. Know what properties you are competing with and what they are offering, mainly anything within a mile or so of your property.
  4. Collaborate with local businesses. Partner with local coffee shops and retailers, either by offering merchandise to your guests or giving your...
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63 | Cleaning is Now Safety | with Safety Captain Justin Ford

Uncategorized May 14, 2020


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We’ve talked about safety before, and we’ve talked about cleaning, but one thing is now clear in a COVID-19 world: Cleaning is safety.

We have our safety expert, Justin Ford, back on the show this week to talk about how things have changed dramatically since his last appearance. Prior to COVID-19, the only safety measures involving cleaning products mostly revolved around the way those products were stored and keeping them out of the hands and mouths of children. Today, cleaning properly is the number one concern of guests.

There is no real guideline for what cleaning safety should look like, but there are a couple of places to look: The hotel industry, Airbnb’s own policies, and what guests actually want. Guests, in particular, have some very deep concerns about the safety of their rentals — with no clear way of alleviating that fear.

So what cleaning aspect should you, as a host, be concerned with now that you hadn’t been...

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62 | Creating an Unforgettable Airbnb Experience: Star Wars Edition | with Bryndee Barton

Uncategorized May 07, 2020


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Everyone wants their property to stand out from the crowd, and one way to do that is through experiential properties. These properties take their guest experience to the extreme.

Bryndee Barton is the designer at Loma Homes, which has an incredible Star Wars-themed rental that you can experience right now. She started in the more traditional real estate realm and now she focuses on managing Airbnbs that take their guests to the next level.

They didn’t set out to specifically make themed rentals, but Bryndee knew that they wanted their properties to be in the top 10% of whatever market they were in. When they looked at the competition out there, they saw that doing these above-and-beyond themes would make them stand out from the crowd.

This is not just throwing down some Star Wars throw pillows and comforters, though. They went all-out. We dive into all of the work that goes into creating these themes and properties, finding investors for your Airbnb...

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61 | Building an Epic Short-Term Rental Business | with Steph Utterback

Uncategorized Apr 30, 2020


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Do you want to create an epic business?

From the time Steph Utterback was a manager at Starbucks, she had a love for hospitality, and that led to her pursuing the world of short-term rentals. Steph is now the owner of EpicBnb, a Nashville-based hospitality company specializing in design, short-term rental management, and consulting.

Over time, she evolved her portfolio into an “epic” branding, and the biggest part of that is having her epic standards — which was essentially the Airbnb Plus checklist before that was a program. 

The main question she asks her clients is: Would you pay to stay in your property? People are expecting an upgrade over their everyday living situation, and that’s what you need to provide in order to be epic.

Another part of an epic business is an epic team. The first essential employee for EpicBnb was an accountant because money is constantly floating around. They’ve now currently grown to a...

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