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Block dates OR put ridiculous price?


#21

I know, we all have to do what works. Not sure why you could not list on VRBO and the rest since your rental is seperate from the house, no shared spaces…

RR


#22

It’s not a vacation rental. No kitchen, no lounge space and it is attached to my house. It seems like a recipie for disappointed guests.


#23

Hotel rooms can be booked on Bookingdotcom

RR


#24

It’s good to know I have options. Once I get ready to shut down for months at a time I’ll see if anything works for me in addition to Airbnb.


#25

Oh and there’s also the unlisted option Vs unavailable. It seems counterproductive to have it not visible to anyone for any date but maybe that actually produces a better result in the long run. @Xena how long did it take you to ramp up again after taking time off?


#26

To the benefit us of all :wink: I have decided to take the chance and try the 3 courses of action: One room I had a family member make a reservation. One room I have kept with a ridiculous high price. One room I have blocked.

I hope to have some data to analyze by the end of January, although I’m not expecting a lot:
We don’t know if blocking one listing will affect all listings. Also, I had our most popular room reserved, since I didn’t want to risk that room coming to a stall. Our second most popular room I blocked, and the least popular room I put a high price on it. Another factor to take into account, we are just in our first year with our new listings, so there’s still a lot to improve on our occupancy.
Anyway now it’s wait and see. I hope that we get a few indicators out of this experiment.

I did notice some very funny stuff in AirBnB’s feedback on prices, but that definitely merits it’s own topic.


#27

We are closed for 4 months every winter and I just block the dates, not noticed any detriment to bookings, most high season bookings come in while we are closed & blocked out in Jan & Feb.


#28

I think this is a really interesting conversation. I come from an art background and we often use the “price it ridiculously high” strategy. If we have made something we really want to keep we put a ridiculous price on it in an exhibition on the basis that if anyone is willing to pay the price we will get over our reluctance to let it go. I had never imagined that this scenario would also follow me to STR.


#29

It’s a slower time of year for bookings so at first I hadn’t realized something was different but I noticed I wasn’t coming up high in the searches. I’m on IB and usually I get at least one new booking a week in my slower times. After the block it almost dried up. Then as I got past the date, I started to get bookings again. I also noticed that I once again came up higher on the searches. (I do a private web browser search so to that I can get “real” algorithm results.

I figured It out based on some posts from this forum so thank you.

In the beginning when began hosting I had a person who would stay in my apartment below and take care of the change-overs but it didn’t work out. I then had a cleaner who could do the change-overs when I was out of town but she abruptly quit one day while I was on vacation and I literally had to rush home and clean the suite before the guests arrived.

So for next trip (and it was family medical related) I blocked the dates and that when I noticed this phenomenon. For my next trip (also family medical related) I was afraid to block the dates so I have left them open and my new cleaner (who I am very happy with ) has agreed to clean the place and keep an eye out.

Personally, I’d rather keep the place empty. I have a pending approval for those dates that will expire in a few hours. I’m going to raise my rates for those dates to see what happens.

In the future I’m going to have my daughter book the dates and reimburse.

I find it very frustrating that we get penalized for having to block some of our days. URGH!


#30

I added VRBO but I’m not even getting a nibble. Anything you can share with me? It also worries me that if I block dates because of VRBO books, I’ll get realized by Airbnb. From April - November I’m nearly 100% booked.


#31

I was a subscriber to smartbnb and they would do a search each night and email the results so that’s how I noticed my drop. Also there were days when I didn’t show up at all that I hadn’t blocked. That’s why I got the idea that Airbnb randomly hides listings on a rotating basis to give low ranked hosts a chance to get bookings. If you call about it they tell you it’s a glitch or even that they can see it and it must be your browser blahs de blah.


#32

I am not sure, I have been on TripAdvisor six months and just got my first booking so I think the more places I am listed it equals more exposure which will result in bookings. You may have a point about the blocks from other sites hurting your Air ranking, they seem to be petty that way. I will continue to put my listing out there everywhere I can that fits. I just went and raised my prices across the board for all of my December bookings. My calendar is not even open past that. I open it up one month at a time. The difference is I do not care that much. If I can get 5 or 6 nights booked that pays the mortgage, if not I pay it.

RR


#33

Interestingly, if you increase your price so that you’re not competitive abb will reduce your ranking.
Switch on smart pricing or lower the price and you’ll go up the ranks.
I can’t find anything saying blocked dates effect ranking for anything other than the dates you’ve blocked, which is what you would expect.


#34

Funny how people take this personally. They aren’t being petty and they aren’t punishing anyone. They don’t want guests to have to scroll through listings that aren’t available. Maybe a better way to think of it is that they are rewarding the hosts that are always available, booking in lots of guests, turning lots of people into Airbnb customers. There are a limited number of spaces available at the “top of the search rankings” so hosts with long minimum stays, blocked off days, mediocre reviews, no instant book, longer advance notice requirements get moved down overall in search. Also keep in mind that each persons search result is impacted by previous searches they have made on the site.

As for the blocking from being listed on other sites, perhaps the algorithm assigns a block from calendar syncing a different weight than it does if someone manually blocks dates? I’ve also wondered if the auto blocking of one or two days before and after a booking would work the same as manually blocking them.


#35

About a month. My listing was snoozed for about a year and a half. When I reopened, it took about a week or two to get one booking, and a month to start getting regular bookings. I reopened in March, which is when bookings first start to pick up after winter. Judging from my low pageviews, I don’t think I was getting a boost for reactivating a snoozed listing.


#36

So it appears that it doesn’t matter if you are blocked or snoozed, you drop in search if not available.


#37

Thankfully VRBO does not use the same metrics or I would be sunk. Petty may have been the wrong choice of words I do not take it personally.

I am confident I will get the bookings one way or the other. When I do finally open up my calendar it will be in conjunction with opening up a new listing so Air will love me again!

The rate it’s going that will be in the Spring, rainy days suck when building

Rr

Delivered by carrier pigeon


#38

I have had several contractor projects done over the last 8 years both indoor and out, both big (adding 110 sq ft to the house or complete kitchen remodel) medium and small (500 ft of fake grass installed) and the one factor that I’ve come to count on is that the contractor will never start or finish as early as they promised/indicated. It doesn’t matter if I found someone on craigslist or chose a high dollar home builder. Well, no, actually one of my best workers is the ironwork guy who I found on CL.


#39

I often have clients asking me how much I think it will cost to build a deck or add on a room. I tell them construction cost for new usually are between X an Y per square foot but the one thing they can depend on is it taking twice as long and costing twice as much…
I am building a 600 sf stand alone guest house, two stories , 22 ft ceilings it will be very nice when I am done. No contractor, I am the general contractor and I have two guys and myself we are doing the whole thing. It is still taking longer and costing more… The only bright side is the longer it takes the less the monthly cost and I can absorb more of it and borrow less.

RR


#40

Well then you know how it goes.

Now this I have not experienced. The only additional costs are when I decide to make upgrades to the plan. Generally though I’ve never had a problem with that.


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