Advantages of a slower pace

Given all the turmoil and anger Airbnb’s ever-changing policies and mercurial customer service can cause, I am delighted to be a home-share host who no longer books through Airbnb or any other short-term rental service.

We get direct reservations from past guests, whom we already know. We’ll also take reservations who are recommended to us by people we know and trust.

This business is so much simpler for us without that extra layer between us and guests.

We are content with less guest traffic and less income than we made through Airbnb. Along with that comes the benefit of less stress.

Being home-share hosts gives us knowledge of our guests, virtually all of whom are repeaters and friends. We’re not looking for high-volume—the pandemic changed our minds about that. This slower and safer pace suits us.

I know that not everyone can or would want to home-share and direct-book, but we think it’s easier—at least for us. And it doesn’t have to be a big deal with marketing and a fancy website. We’re fans of growing our business through word-of-mouth.


This is basically how we operated during COVID. We missed the flow of new guests from all over the world. We have gone from 3 rooms to 1 and I do find myself wondering if I could keep up with our old pace. Having our home to ourselves a little more often has advantages.


During the pandemic, many people discovered the toll that chasing the dollar takes on one. I also am happy to slow the pace though I’m still opening my Airbnb calendar when convenient. When I started my goal was to make enough to pay the property tax which was about $3000. Now the property tax is over $4000 so I can’t cut back too much. LOL.


taxes Raised, in TX??

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LOL. Yes. Because we don’t have state income tax, we have relatively high property taxes. But the rates and collections are all done on a county wide basis so there’s variance from county to county.

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Property taxes are usually a function of the market value of the property, and values have shot up all over the US. I don’t think most people have realized that yet.

Yes, but the taxes in CA don’t go up unless property is sold or if it gets a new valuation due to remodel.


I wish the Central Appraisal District hadn’t realized it. My valuation went from $155k to $170k. I get a little break because I turn 65 this year.

Same boat. I’m really lucky to be able to back off from hosting thanks to the ramping up of my other job. I’m surprised at myself. I like hosting, and thought I would continue regardless. But not right now. The pandemic, the company’s response to it, etc., beat it out of me. Blocking the calendar was a great relief.


Fortunately not all municipalities have updated values of record.

Where I live, property taxes don’t exactly track values. The city passes their budget and the tax bill is divided up according to relative property values, so someone with a better house than mine does pay more than me, but both of us have a pretty stable tax bill year over year, even if property values double.

The only time we see a big tax jump is if our yearly assessment goes up significantly more in comparison other peoples’ increases.

I always ran my Airbnb at an easygoing pace from day 1. I was already 66 when I started, only had a private room to rent for 1 guest. I also have an upholstery business and look after the property next door, minimally, for the absentee owners. Also had another little property management job at the time I started listing my place.

So I always had a 1 day prep time block between bookings, a 3 day minimum (don’t fancy daily cleanings for same day or 1 night turnovers) and a 2 week max.
I happily blocked days when family and friends wanted to come.

My bookings started out slowly, which was also good- I could ease into the hosting routine. By the time I closed for Covid in March 2019, I was getting almost more bookings than I wanted. I found I preferred a few days break to have the house to myself after a string of guests.

But I really missed hosting and my great and interesting guests from all over during the time I was closed for Covid. It was nice to get my first post-Covid ( not that it’s “over”) guest the beginning of May for 2 weeks and she was really cool.

Now I am closed again, getting ready for a month long trip to Canada. When I get back, I plan to revamp my listing, new photos and such, and hope for a busy, but not hectic, fall, winter and spring.

I totally understand that for many hosts, they have chosen hosting as their career, and it may be their sole source of income, or they are fine with juggling another job, hosting and family obligations. They may not want or need a slower pace. I love that there are so many different hosting models.


I definitely cut back from the pre Covid lockdowns which had meant no income for a time. In NSW (Australia), the State Government introduced a registration process with annual fee attached which, although not exhorbitant, involved some extra paperwork. They were busy during Covid ha ha .

Since reopening, I have spaced the bookings out more and blocked out more time for friends and family. This last weekend I have had the first difficult guests probably ever.
11 pm call to change linen then the next night they wanted to use Amazon Prime so they’ve signed me up for a 30 day trial. Must remember to cancel. I provide complimentary Netflix as standard…
I am living with my Mum due to health concerns, so not being at the property is complex when such things arise…
It made me wonder if I should continue. I know it’s only one booking but it makes you reassess.
Cheers from Downunder!


I home shared. Somewhere into the 3rd year, the relatively liw price began to attract a ‘type’.


So there is nothing in the legaleze AirBnB hosts need to sign off on that prohibits them from directing booking after an initial AirBnB stay? You’d think they would have something in there that says something like “Once you have booked with “John Smith” you agree to never rent to them again outside of our platform”. After all, AirBnB did initially bring the two of you together. Of course this would be very difficult to enforce if you’re both off their platform! How would they know short of planting someone outside your place and watching day and night?

There is some Airbnb wording somewhere to that effect, I’ve seen it before but don’t know where to locate it again.

It’s ridiculous for them to think they can dictate whether a host chooses to book a repeat guest in some other way, though, and as you say, how would they ever know? Most of us wouldn’t rebook a guest off a platform anyway if we had any sense that they were the type of person to “report” you for what is actually a favor to them- saving them the service fees.

And a couple of my guests have become friends. Sorry, but Airbnb has zero say over what kind of arrangements I make with friends…

The policy is here:

“* Asking or encouraging guests to book outside of Airbnb for repeat or future bookings”

The only danger I see is a guest booking directly and then having an issue that you don’t resolve. In retaliation they tell Airbnb you are taking Airbnb guests off platform and as a consequence Airbnb removes you from the platform.

Actually, I like that wording. “Asking” or “encouraging” isn’t the same thing as simply letting a guest know that it’s an option should they want to come back.

That’s my position too. If I say anything, I say “We accept bookings through AirBnB, Vrbo, and our own website. Whichever platform is best for you is fine with us.”

I suspect AirBnB has this policy because they don’t want “their” guests harassed by owners to book off-platform. And some people have posted comments that demonstrated they expect AirBnB to resolve issues for them even when they book directly with the owner the second time.

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ABB found John Smith, but keeping him as a return guest is 100% on us as hosts.
It’s not like AirCover is so enticing we’d want to stay on-platform.

suitably vague, and for once that language works in our favour!

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