Quora Round-Up. February
I fucking love Quora.com
So much so, that I’ve decided to do a monthly roundup of all of my answers on airbnbsmart.com to fill ya’ll in on what’s been going on.
So here it is, the first edition of Airbnb Smart’s Quora round-up!
How do I save taxes on the money I made on Airbnb?
Making money through Airbnb is awesome. Let’s face it.
But, without proper advice and preparation come April time, when the Tax Authorities want their pound of flesh, you could be facing a hefty tax bill.
If you have followed my other tutorials on how to:
You should be starting to churn some serious coin from your Airbnb Investment.
Don’t dig your head in the sand.
Take action, get organized and don’t get stung when it comes to Tax Return time!
What Expenses are Tax Deductible on Airbnb?
Tax Deductible Airbnb expenses derive from any expense incurred through the operation of your Airbnb rental.
Some examples of tax deductions for your Airbnb property include:
- Mortgage Payments
- House Insurance
- Landlords Insurance
- Cleaning Fees
- Utilities eg. Gas, Water, Electricity
- Netflix, Amazon Prime etc.
- Maintenance work
The more tax-deductible expenses you can legitimately rack up, the better.
Is it even legal to rent my property in my City?
Before you jump straight into renting your property with Airbnb it is a very good idea to check with your local authorities beforehand or you could be in for a nasty shock.
Airbnb has been banned (or severely restricted) in:
- New York
- San Francisco
- Santa Monica
Run a Google search for your local area and you should be able to find out most of the info you need to know.
Some Hosts have been fined substantial amounts for failing to comply with their local regulations. So don’t be a mug, and check it out.
How to plan for your Airbnb Tax Bill.
Every transaction that goes through Airbnb is traceable, so this is not an area to try and be sneaky or cut corners.
The most important thing is to keep organized documental evidence of all of your Airbnb expenditures.
I have been trying to a find a decent app to help keep my tax affairs in order and I can’t recommend Hurdlr App highly enough.
The app lets you scan all of your expenses, organizing them into neat folders. It gives you heaps of handy graphs etc. to visualize your expenses so that you never miss a beat.
Using an app like this will save you a serious headache come tax return time.
Will income from Airbnb be taxed like a second job?
Airbnb income will not be classed as a second job, so you won’t need to pay PAYE tax on your earnings.
You will need to pay tax on your income (supposing you make a profit), but this tax can be deferred until you file your tax return, after you have deducted all eligible expenses.
Many Countries and even States have very different ways of taxing income generated through Airbnb, so it will pay off big time to do a bit of research in your area to make sure you’re maximizing your returns.
“A Stitch in time, Saves Nine”
I think someone, somewhere said some shit like that anyway.
Is it hard to do a tax return for your Airbnb property?
So long as you are organized, it should be a breeze.
But if you are like me, and feel sick at the thought of wasting your time filling out Tax forms then just get an accountant to do it for you.
The price of your accountant is tax deductible, plus they’ll be on hand to offer advice along the way.
So, now that you are making a killing on Airbnb, you’ll need to get your proverbial house in order to ensure an easy ride.
As an Airbnb Superhost, what is your #1 tip for being an A+ Airbnb host?
I’m a hands-off Nomadic Airbnb Host.
I choose to have my property set up so that I can be an A+ Host even though I don’t have to lift a finger, and even though I will never meet the guests in person.
How do I do it:
- I have my Cleaner set up on a bonus system to ensure the property is kept immaculate (No 5* Review means no bonus). Setting this up like this has virtually guaranteed 5 Star Airbnb reviews for cleanliness.
- I Automate my Airbnb Saved Messages. I don’t know about you, but when you have 100+ guest check-ins a year, keeping up to date with communications is a huge burden on your time. I have my account set up to automate 80% of all guest communication so that I never miss a beat. How do I do it? With the help of these guys!
- I go the extra mile. I make sure my guests have everything they could want and more. If you give more value than they expected you’ll be guaranteed happy guests.
- I give all of my guests unexpected early arrivals and late departure times. In doing this, my guests will feel like they’re getting superstar treatment (even though this is all part of the plan..).
These are just a few of my top tricks to automate your way to being an A+ Airbnb Host.
I don’t like to think I’m lazy, I just like to think I’m efficient.
If you need any more advice, feel free to hit me up.
How can I automate the creation of Airbnb listings?
At the moment there is no ‘Out of the Box Solution’ to automate the creation of Airbnb listings.
There are a lot of variables when creating a listing that must be addressed.
This is not to say that it is impossible, but it would take a heap of time and effort to have things working smoothly to automate the process.
The areas address are:
- Photographs of your property.
- Airbnb description.
- House Manual.
- Payment settings.
- Availability settings.
In my opinion, the best way to implement such a system would not be to automate the whole process, as I think there are too many variables and the end product wouldn’t be that great.
Instead, I would choose to hire someone who can do the this whole process for you.
This wouldn’t cost you a huge amount and would be much more efficient.
There are plenty of people who would love to tackle a job like this.
I’d recommend reading “E-Myth, by Michael Gerber” to get a solid workbook for your new employee to work from.
Feel free to copy my steps to create a killer listing that will rank high on Airbnb if you need any guidelines to help get this process set up.
There are lots more ways to automate Airbnb messages, reviews, reminders etc. once you are set up too.
If you have any more questions, feel free to hit me up in the comments.
How do I outsource Airbnb, homeaway and all website inquiries?
Just get automated software to do it for you!
Why go through all of the hassle of outsourcing the work via Odesk, Elance etc. when you don’t have to.
I have my Airbnb property set to send Auto-responses for:
- Booking Confirmation – Thank you and touch base message.
- 72 Hours Before Check—in – Parking and access instructions.
- 16 Hours Before Check-out – Reminder of Check-out time and procedure.
- 3 Hours After Check-out – Thank you message and bum lick.
Also set to fire off Auto-reminders to my cleaners:
- 48 Hours Before Check-In
- 24 Hours After Check-Out
And then I set it to Automate all of my reviews for me!
- I rotate x5 different generic reviews
All of this gets done for me whether I am fast asleep, or off-grid surfing in the tropics.
How do I do it all?
I use this app.
If you want to steal my Saved Airbnb Responses and have it set up exactly as I do, go nuts.
It’ll probably save you a ton of time.
Either way. I hope this answered your question.
What are some Airbnb hacks and tips?
Here is my top list of Airbnb Hacks & Tips:
Surprise early Check-in and Late Check-Out.
On my listing my check-in and check-out times are:
- Check-In – 3pm
- Check-Out – 10am
I send automated messages to all my guests informing them they can check-in an hour earlier, and check-out an hour later.
This way each guest thinks they are getting extra special treatment.
A sure fire way to get 5 Star Airbnb reviews.
Use Airbnb Saved Messages
I use Airbnb’s Saved Messages to store all of my answers to frequently asked questions. This saves me the time of re-typing the same old answers each and every time.
Click. Click. Done!
Spy on your competitors
Did you know you can spy on your competitors to see how many views their listing gets?
Generally speaking, the more views they are getting, the better they are performing.
Check through their listing, pricing etc. to see if there is anything you can copy/learn to improve your listing.
Automate reminders to your cleaner
Remembering to send reminders to your cleaner can be a massive headache, that’s why I use this software to send the reminders for me 🙂
Send a thank you message/bum lick after guest departure
What better way to guarantee 5 Star reviews than to give a massive thank you to your guests after they’ve left.
I have this automated too.
Don’t set Airbnb Price Tips!
Airbnb’s price tips are NOT a good indicator of the market value of your property. They are set up to make a bidding war between Hosts to push prices down.
Take my advice, earn $$$$’s more, and TURN OFF AIRBNB PRICE TIPS!!!
There is so much to learn on Airbnb, so many tips and tricks to make sure your listing is at peak performance.
I share a ton of info on my blog which you can check out here.
This is a pretty good start to get you going though.
How much money can you make, under the right circumstances, running an Airbnb business?
Airbnb is a goldmine.
It could be your route out of rat race.
It has been for me, and it could be for you also.
I used to work 50+ Hours working as a barista frothing milk for a living, whilst living in a tiny house (aka “The Noddy House”).
All of my hard earned cash went on mortgage and bills with virtually no money left over.
With the rise of Airbnb, I saw a way out.
I realized I was sitting on my biggest asset (“The Noddy House”).
The tiny house that I called home, was the perfect fit for Airbnb.
It was small, but it was perfect for couples looking for something cheap to rent on their vacations.
I put my property on Airbnb and the rest is history.
I now make upwards of $35,000 a year from this one property alone, which now funds my lifestyle of traveling the world.
My obsession with Airbnb led me to uncover every Airbnb Host Hack out there to maximize my bookings.
I also made the decision to automate and outsource as much of the Airbnb process as possible. So what used to be a full-time job, now takes me approx 10 Mins a week to run. All from my mobile phone, wherever I am in the world.
Steps to take:
- Do Airbnb market research for your area.
- Find out how much you could realistically charge for your property.
- Work off an occupancy rate of 70% (I think this is reasonable if you follow these steps).
- Find a super flexible cleaner, and set them up on an incentivised payment program.
- Follow these steps to create a killer Airbnb listing.
- Use this software to automate Airbnb saved messages (this will save you a ton of time).
There are heaps of tips to maximize your income on Airbnb, too much to go through here.
But if you’re serious about using Airbnb to make more money you can learn more here.
Hope this helps.
Why did it take Airbnb eight years to turn a profit?
Airbnb’s objective for its first eight years was not about profit, but growth.
Ever since their first round of seed funding ($20,000 – $40,000) back in 2009 at the now famous Y-Combinator Seed Accelerator, they have been focused entirely on increasing growth and market share.
How can the company survive without making a profit?
They just do another fundraising investment round.
Airbnb today is the third most valuable venture capital-backed company in the world, valued at $25.5 billion. Their last fundraising round was for a massive $800 million.
Their investors didn’t need to see a return on their money in the early days, as they know they will get their pay day when Airbnb decides to launch their IPO (rumors have it that this could be as early as 2018).
Could Airbnb have made a profit in those early days?
Absolutely, but they might not have grown into the behemoth of a company that they are today.
How do I successfully run an AirBnB business?
I’m going to go out on a limb and make the presumption that you are looking to create an Airbnb business that is:
- Generates passive income
Now let me show you how to set this up 🙂
Listing creation (and optimization)
The look and feel of your listing has by far the biggest impact on how well (or not) your property will perform.
Things to make sure you do:
- Take great quality photos of your property (use at least x20 in your listing)
Whatever you do don’t use your phone to take images of your property. Do whatever you can to get your hands on a good SLR camera.
Take all of your images in Landscape mode (your photos won’t render properly in Portrait mode and will look shit).
Enhance all your images with photo editing software (I use iPhoto).
- Create a killer listing title.
You only have 50 characters so make them count.
Highlight anything that is unique about your property/area. Use up every last character if you can.
Good example: ‘Surf Pad’ 400m to Beach & Harbour + WiFi & Netflix
Bad example: double/twin and private bathroom.
Tip: Use Capitol Letters at the start of each word to make it stand out, and use character saving symbols like: + & /
- Create a compelling listing description.
Once you’ve lured your customer onto your listing page the first thing that they will read is your description.
Make sure it is informative and fun.
There is a character limit here as well so choose your words wisely and don’t waffle.
- Fill in ALL of the fields of when you upload/create your listing. *Airbnb ranks listings higher if all of the fields are complete.
Set out competitive pricing for your property relative to your competition.
You can do this (painstakingly) by searching through all of your competitors pricing data for each month of the year and recording it on a spreadsheet.
Or, you can let a robot do it for you!
You can get a free two-week trial with these guys (No need for a credit card either :), and let their system do all of the hard work for you.
Now that your Airbnb listing is complete you should start to see the bookings flooding in (if not, check this article on how to increase your Airbnb ranking).
With all of these bookings comes lots of guest messages to write.
If you’re managing your Airbnb property well, you should be looking at roughly 100+ bookings per year.
To make my guests feel special, I send out x5 messages at set intervals of every booking:
- Booking Confirmation – Thank you and touch base message.
- 72 Hours Before Check – In – Parking and access instructions.
- 12 Hours Before Check- In – House Manual
- 16 Hours Before Check-Out – Reminder of Check-out time and procedure.
- 3 Hours After Check-Out – Thank you message and bum lick.
So, if my math is correct that is 100 x 5 = 500!
That’s 500 F*#K@^G messages a year, re-hashing the same S*#T.
I don’t know about you, but I have got better things to do with my time.
Either way, I can’t be bothered to write 500 messages, that is why I employ another robot to do this for me.
Pretty cool hey.
If you’re lazy and want to copy the content of my auto-responder guest messages, you can do that here.
This is the boring part, but f#*k me, if you can get this part set up right, you are well on your way to having your Airbnb business running like a well-oiled machine.
Your cleaner needs to be:
- Super flexible
- Ability to communicate by email
- Work within a bonus pay structure
- Be good at their job
A good reliable cleaner is worth their weight in gold.
They will be the workhorses who will give you the ability to sleep easy whilst drinking Mai-Tai’s in the tropics.
If you can get this system set up correct then you have a scalable business that frees you up to get another property to manage in the same way, and so on.
For a more in-depth guide on how to set up your Airbnb business to generate passive income click here.
Also, if you want to learn how to improve your Airbnb ranking check here.
How can Airbnb hosts deter their guests from peeing on the floor?
Pretty simple really.
Put a sign up in the bathroom, and charge an extra cleaning fee for pissy floors.
That should do the job.
What is Airbnb’s office number?
Airbnb can be an absolute nightmare to get hold of them.
They make it virtually impossible to find out their contact number.
So, for that reason, here’s a list of every Airbnb contact number worldwide:
Airbnb Contact Numbers
Argentina – +54 11 53 52 78 88
Australia – +61 2 8520 3333
Austria / Österreich – +43 72 08 83 800
Brazil / Brasil – +55 21 3958-5800
Canada – +1-855-424-7262 / 1-855-4-AIRBNB (toll-free)
Chile – +56 229380777
China / Zhongguo – +86 10 5904 5310 or 400 890 0309 (shared-cost)
Denmark / Danmark – +45 89 88 20 00
France – +33 1 84 88 40 00
Germany / Deutschland – +49 30 30 80 83 80
Greece – +30 211 1989888
Hong Kong / Xianggang 香港 – +852 5808 8888
Ireland – +353 1 697 1831
Israel / Yisrael – +972 3 939 9977
Italy / Italia – +39 06 99366533
Japan / Nippon – +81 3 4580 0999 or +81 800 100 1008 (toll-free)
Mexico / Méjico – +52 55 41 70 43 33
Netherlands – +31 20 52 22 333
New Zealand – +64 4 4880 888
Norway / Norge – +47 21 61 16 88
Peru – +51 1 7089777
Poland / Polska – +48 22 30 72 000
Portugal – +351 30 880 3888
Puerto Rico – +1 787 919-0880
Russia / Rossiya – Россия – +7 4954658090 or 88003017104 (toll-free)
South Korea / Hanguk – +82 2 6022 2499 or +82 808 220 230 (toll-free)
Spain / España – +34 91 123 45 67
Sweden / Sverige – +46 844 68 12 34
Switzerland / Schweiz / Suisse – +41 43 50 84 900
United Kingdom – +44 203 318 1111
United States (USA) / Estados Unidos de América (EEUU) – +1-415-800-5959 (local San Francisco number) or +1-855-424-7262 / 1-855-4-AIRBNB (toll-free)
Hope this helps.
How many bookings does Airbnb have per day?
How many bookings does Airbnb generate per day?
Airbnb greased over 80 Million nights booked in 2015 so I am going to conservatively estimate that they are churning upwards of 100 Million nights booked in 2017.
The average nightly stay in San Fransisco (before the Airbnb restrictions) was 5.5 nights per booking.
I think this is on the slightly high side when taking a global average of nightly bookings, so lets take a conservative guess and say that the global average nightly stay is 3.5 nights per booking.
So, lets do the math:
100,000,000 (nights booked) / 3.5 (Av nights per booking) = 28,571,438 Bookings Per Year.
28,571,438 / 365 (days) = 78,277 Bookings Per Day!
Airbnb is supposedly on track to net $2 Billion in 2016
Thats $54,794,52.05479 Per day.
What is the typical number of views for an Airbnb listing per month?
I don’t know if it is really possible to define ‘typical’ in this situation as there are too many variables.
But you can spy on your competitors listing pages to see how many views they are getting in comparison to you.
This is a good indication of how well your competition is performing.
If you’d like to find out more about how to get more listing views, increase your Airbnb rankings and generate more bookings you can do that here.
Why does Airbnb make it so hard to contact them?
As with many so many of these big tech companies they make it intentionally hard to get in contact.
Even though they are some of the most profitable companies in the world, they chose not to invest in customer service staff, instead, they rely on their knowledge base of FAQ’s.
This is all very well in theory, but it can be a nightmare when you have an issue that doesn’t fit into their boxes.
Trying to find a contact number can be next to impossible.
Thankfully, you can find a list of every Airbnb Contact number worldwide here.
So in conclusion,
“Why does Airbnb make it so hard to contact them?”
Quite simply, to save $$$$
If you’ve managed to read everything and get this far then well done.
If you’d like to keep abreast of all of my activity on Quora you can follow me here, alternatively, you can just follow me on Facebook or Twitter as I re-post all my activity there too.
As always if you have any questions whatsoever, chuck it in the comments.