Are long term renters a good thing, or is it better to rent for a few days at a time?

I mentioned this in a post last week. I’m on a facebook group that has a travel subsection. When people post saying “I’m going to Lisbon and need recommendations…” they say hotel or Airbnb 90% of the time. They don’t say “home share” or “VRBO.” Prior to being in that group I didn’t really realize that Airbnb stumbled into something you can’t buy: the value of a proprietary eponym.

I choose Airbnb because of the kind of listing I have but even if a challenger arose in the home share space (which I would love) I can’t imagine leaving Airbnb and my 100s of 5 star reviews behind.

*note: in the US hoovering isn’t used in place of the word vacuuming. A better example in the US would be Kleenex or Xerox.

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I generally prefer long termers for stability during the slow months. I don’t have any laws impeding me and generally the experience is quite positive. *

However the per-night net is quite low, and when you are being charged commission as well, it gets a little rough. That’s why I favour direct bookings on long term.

*I said “generally”. If there were a Superguest award, I can think of a few. But I just completed a 2 month long home inspection with a guest who put a capital “A” on annoying. You know, one of those “count the days” deals.

To circumvent potential disasters, I make my own personal guarantee. I have a strict cancellation policy. But If the guest arrives and for whatever reason they are not happy, they can relocate through Airbnb without cost within 24 hours. No shame, no blame. An unhappy guest makes me unhappy in my own home, and I don’t like that. It also affords them some protection. And when it comes to reviews, I remind them that they were offered the option of bailing without penalty up front.

What I don’t say is that if I am having a problem with THEM, and feel I cannot save it, it’s an elegant out. Glad to see the back of your head.

Has it happened? Rare, but yes. Some people are a bad fit, and the more bookings you do, it’s a matter of probability.

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