49 | 8 Danger Zones in a Short Term Rental and How to Avoid Them | with Justin Ford

Uncategorized Feb 06, 2020


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As promised, Justin Ford is back to talk about all things safety! We’re going to keep him on as a recurring guest all year, and today he’s going to talk about 8 danger zones in a short term rental.

In case you missed the first episode, Justin is a vacation rental safety expert. He works at a company called Breezeway, a property operations & services platform. He understands what it means to be a host, but he also understands why safety needs to be your top priority.


Here are 8 danger zones you need to be aware of:

  1. Each designated bedroom and/or sleeping area in the rental dwelling  needs to provide a clear secondary means of exit. Make sure to provide the best opportunity for renters to escape and consider all restrictions that may prevent it.
  2. If the property uses propane or natural gas for cooking or heating, have all gas connections, plumbing and appliances inspected annually for leaks. If a rental uses natural gas or...
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48 | 7 Ways to Make Money in the STR Industry if You're a Stager or Designer

Uncategorized Jan 23, 2020


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We are all about education here on the show, and when we are really experts on something, we want to share it with you. One of those things we want to share with you today is how to make more money and diversify your income using staging or designing skills applied to the short term rental industry.


These are 7 ways you can make more money as a stager, designer, or host:

  1. Add consulting to your list of services. If you know anything about the short term rental market, let people know about it and add it to your list of services.
  2. Stage-to-rent designing. There are some big differences between staging for sale or renting because furniture and props used in sales staging aren’t meant to be used. Expertise in this field is incredibly valuable to other hosts.
  3. Installing. This is a lot of work, and something people usually underestimate how much is involved. When someone is starting from zero in making a space livable, it’s going to take time...
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47 | Different Worlds, Same Mission: Airbnb Advice from a Vacation Rental Expert | with Sharon Keefe

Uncategorized Jan 16, 2020


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A lot of people think of short term rentals as a new, crazy thing. But if you think about it, people have been doing this kind of thing all the time in vacation spots.

Sharon Keefe has spent the last 7 years conducting knowledge management in the vacation rental space. She is a vacation rental property management pro, and we’re so excited to chat with her. She coaches other vacation rentals on how to do better, be better, and make more.

While vacation rentals have been doing this for a while, their mission overlaps so, so much with short term rentals. But there are also a lot of misconceptions out there between a professional vacation manager and an Airbnb host.



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46 | How to Make Your Rental as Safe as Possible | with Justin Ford

Uncategorized Jan 09, 2020


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Are you making safety a top priority for your Airbnb or short term rental? You are taking responsibility for your guests, and that goes beyond cleanliness, amenities, and standing out.

Justin Ford is director of safety and certification programs at Breezeway, a software company that makes it easier to manage property care and maintenance operations. Justin focuses on the operations side specifically, helping property managers and owners maintain the safety of vacation rental properties and short term rentals.

It is easy to only look at the bare minimum of safety, such as smoke alarms and fire extinguishers, but there is so much more to keep in mind and many pillars of safety that may not be on your radar at all. We’re going to go over why safety needs to be at the top of your list.


Why does safety tend to get overlooked?

Safety is overlooked because we are comfortable and familiar with our space. It’s easy to assume that everyone else...

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45 | How to Bounce Back When You Let Your Guests Down

Uncategorized Jan 02, 2020


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Letting down your guests sucks, but when it happens (and it will happen), what do you do next?

We’re going to share the experiences we’ve had and how we bounced back. You are not alone if you’ve made a mistake. No matter how good you are, things are going to happen, and what matters in those moments is how you handle it.

When something goes wrong, here’s what you need to do to bounce back:

  • Commiserate with someone who will understand: If you know someone who also runs a rental, share the experience with them. Tell them the story of what happened, and get feedback on what you should do.
  • Take care of the customer: The first thing you need to do is make good on your guests. Assure them that you understand their frustration, apologize, don’t make excuses, and do what you need to do to make it right. You need to go above and beyond the inconvenience caused to them in order to make it up.
  • Create systems to prevent this in the...
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44 | What Is Rental Arbitrage & Should You Do It?

Uncategorized Dec 25, 2019


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We’re going to talk about rental arbitrage. That sounds like one of those terms a sleazy businessman would use to sell you on some kind of scam, but it’s really not! Arbitrage is an important concept to understand, and leveraging it correctly could allow for HUGE growth potential in your business!


So what exactly is arbitrage?

Essentially, arbitrage is purchasing something in one market and then introducing it in another market where there is higher demand for profit. For example, you could rent a location from a landlord (long term rental market), furnish that location, and rent it out on Airbnb (short term rental market). The goal is to take home more from the short term rentals than you are paying in rent.


Why should I do retail arbitrage?

With retail arbitrage, you could potentially scale up your Airbnb or short term rental business faster. If purchasing a property isn’t necessarily in the cards for you, this allows you...

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43 | Advice From a Prior Airbnb Employee | with Danny Rusteen

Uncategorized Dec 18, 2019


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What kinds of things could you learn from chatting with a former Airbnb employee?

Well, Danny Rusteen is a former Airbnb employee, and this has opened a lot of doors for him! After working for them in accounting for two years, Danny was fired, but he saw this as an opportunity to try something different.

Airbnb was running a promotion to get $500 Airbnb credit for every referral, and this was enough to get his attention. He did some interesting, creative things, and ended up referring 36 hosts. The company took notice and hired him back temporarily in a marketing role where he referred hosts.

Working in this role, he noticed all the little things he could do to a listing in order to get a booking. He would tweak headlines and photos and see when more results started coming in. When he left that role, he started “Optimize My Bnb” as a service to help people get more bookings.

Need to make some optimizations to your listing today? Here are some...

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42 | The “What If” Episode | with Jesse Gross

Uncategorized Dec 11, 2019


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Do you have burning questions about starting up your first short term rental? What if your tenants throw a big party? What if someone gets hurt? The questions are endless!

We had the pleasure of meeting Jesse Gross, CEO and co-founder of Makomi, which is a short term rental management company. He has so much experience, because they manage properties from all over.

We’re going to talk about the “What If’s” that could happen to your property, and hopefully put your mind at ease!


What if you get a call from a neighbor and there’s a massive party?

  • Call the police. This is something that happens outside of Airbnb as well, and you don’t want to go there in person and try to break it up yourself. Put safety first. The police report will also be a key part of your claims process.
  • How can you prevent or minimize the chances of this happening? Screen your guests. Be wary of people with 0 reviews or strange profile...
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41 | Capturing Email Addresses for Your Airbnb Guests | with Kelly Rauch

Uncategorized Dec 04, 2019


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How do you keep up high occupancy rates? You have to market!

Kelly Rauch is a marketing expert. We want your short term rental to be the best that it can be, and offer the best guest experience it can, and for you to have high occupancy rates. Marketing your property is going to help keep your occupancy rates high.

We’ve talked with Kelly before on social media marketing and having your own website, but today we’re going to be talking on of the most tried and true marketing methods: building an email list. We’re going to talk about some of the best ways to get those emails and then what the heck you should send them!


Collecting Emails

If you don’t have an email list already, you need to get one started. You can post on social media asking people to join, include a sign-up on your website, and capture the emails of previous Airbnb tenants to add them. You can also include a message at check-in or check-out asking visitors to...

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40 | Airbnb & the Future of Hospitality | with Joseph Michelli

Uncategorized Nov 27, 2019


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We are big believers in hospitality when it comes to being a host. Whenever I’m talking to potential hosts and the first words out of their mouth are about all the money they could make, I get a little defensive. Hospitality has to be at the core of this, and living your dream will come after this.

That’s why we were so excited to read about our guest, Joseph Michelli, on the Airbnb blog. He’s an internationally sought after speaker, author, and organizational consultant who transfers his knowledge of exceptional business practices in ways that develop joyful and productive workplaces with a focus on customer experience.

In his latest book, The Airbnb Way, Joseph delivers proven methods for increasing customer engagement, loyalty, and referrals that can be utilized in any service setting and industry. It gives an inside look into how Airbnb and its host community create dynamic  customer experiences and create brand loyalty in the...

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