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Low-ball listings

There is a listing near me that has a picture of an empty room (plain walls, no furniture, no window treatment). It has great reviews. It’s also priced the same as my listing and I spent a small fortune on furnishings. Maybe I’m the one doing it wrong.

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I don’t know the configuration of the space. I went back to look but the site is down. Oh well.

Some bottom end folks but not you necessarily. People will come and go and those of us with 100s of good reviews will always have an advantage.

Edit: Are you the one that rents out the couch in the living space?

Yes I am the one who rents out the couch, which is actually a bed in a 400sq. ft. living room. And I’m a super host, for what that’s worth. This is Airbnb. We cater to everyone and that’s the ethos of the company. Because I’m so “professional” I’m pretty much booked all the time and I get wonderful, single travelers who seem to like what I offer.

I’m not sure what you mean that you have “an advantage”. An advantage over what? We all offer a range of choices. What you offer is not necessarily going to be what those who stay with me want. That’s the beauty of Airbnb :slight_smile:

Those of us who have been doing this a long time with 100’s of good reviews are going to have an advantage over new hosts. Unless they get all the bookings and we get none, they can’t catch up.

There will always be people who prefer a well reviewed host over a new one. So while the OP is talking about “how do we compete” price is not the only consideration. I had a Dutch guest tell me he only uses Superhosts. Another guest said if my price had been below a certain point he wouldn’t have seen me because of where he set his search parameters. I prefer hosts with Instant Book.

I’m siding with K9 here. What I think she’s saying is anyone charging so little money is likely to decide it simply is not worth it. It takes money and time to prepare a room between guests. It takes energy and planning to have people in your home and it interferes with your own quality of life. If the compensation is enough, it’s worth it. Everyone’s “enough” will be different of course, but for me, $20 bucks ain’t enough.

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Yes, USD 20 is chickenfeed in the US.

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For me, $50-60 isn’t enough. I have a low-end line I just won’t cross.

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When you have an entire apartment to clean or even a bathroom across the hall the rate has to be higher. When I first started I had to clean the bathroom and even after I cleaned, my friends would use it, dog hair would drift in, a fly would go in there to die. I felt obligated to worry about how clean the hallway leading to the room was. Now I’m only picky about the guest space and no one goes in there between guests so I can get slightly less than before. Still, I too have a low end I won’t cross and for me it’s $29.

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I charge 85 to clean but I still won’t negotiate that or go under 65. It’s a full apartment with patio area and plus I have to get my whole yard into shape as well. Takes me hours.

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If you saw the other similar listings they were around the same price.

But for some, $20 is just fine. And for where this listing is and the quality of the accommodation they will get lots of business. After some time I would imagine they’ll up the rate a bit.

And there are always lots of people who don’t care so much about reviews or if you are a Super H. It’s an open market out there for us hosts who offer a full range of cheap to expensive accommodation. I don’t see the point of comparing the accommodation I offer with anyone else. Each of us has something unique to offer. Most of the people I get are solo travelers who want a bargain, and they get one. For them price is the key factor. However, for more expensive properties, price is still a big consideration and of course some reviews that are favorable.

Now that I think of it, in the past I used to see some 3 star ratings in my area but I’m not noticing any these days. I love to read the reviews for those. Very amusing sometimes. And some of the listings were very odd looking with partitioned off rooms and very odd rules, but with no shortage of guests staying and paying :slight_smile:

Oh, I just thought of this woman who has a big house near me. She’s got several listings for this same property: a couple of bedrooms, a living room sofa, and sometimes her bedroom if she’s not there. She has more house rules than I’ve ever seen anyone have, PLUS the guests have to provide their own bedding, AND there are strict rules about spending too much time in the house during the day. She is booked solid and has 5 stars in all categories! How she does it I have no idea. I’ve tried many times referring my guests to her when they want to stay on with me but I have no openings, but she’s usually booked. Her rates are fairly low but not that low. It’s highly amusing I think. I’d love to post a link to her place but I won’t.

Excellent post and you are right. One of the things that I think is cool about airbnb is the range of choices. The only thing I don’t really like to see are the people who aren’t really hosts, they are real estate investors or hotels. Nothing wrong with doing that, I just wish they weren’t on ABB.

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This, absolutely this! When I first started 3.5 years ago I was so intimidated by the professional photos of other listings that I put my place at rock-bottom prices and was amazed that people booked and seemed to like it. There were only two of us in the immediate neighbourhood back then, now of course there are hundreds. My price is more than double what it was when I started and I’m booked most of the time. My place is not perfect but I’ve become a bloody good host! No not a superhost, just a regular, reliable good one. I don’t merit an airbnb badge but I get lots of bookings so it’s all good :slight_smile:

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Absolutely my pet peeve!

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As for your Airbnb success, good on ya as they say. And as for the Super Bitch status. Oops, I mean Super Host, it’s not worth worrying about. For a reality check, please look at the ratings for ultra high end hotels anywhere in the world; NONE of them gets 5 stars or the equivalent using whatever rating system is in place. The bottom line is, you’re getting bookings steadily and you’re making some money. And hopefully in the process you’re enjoying it as much as I have.

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Air and local authorities, and even neighbors in “the hood” are taking swift action against people trying to set up de facto hotels in my area of the world, which is Southern California. It just doesn’t work because you can’t set up a hotel and not have all the ancillary staff to keep everything running smoothly.

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It’s not a competition here and there’s no need to take sides. The issue is what hosts feel comfortable charging guests. What governs it all is location, seasonal demand and availability. You can have the most wonderful place, but if it’s off season and in the middle of no where, you won’t get bookings

Ha ha! I’m happy not to have the SH badge, honestly. I did get it once a couple of years back but it’s unlikely to happen again. Kudos to those who have it and/or want it. It’s not for me, though. And yes, I’m making money and 99% of the time it’s good. Having said that, it is past midnight and I just cleaned the toilet :frowning: But then, I’m getting paid to keep my house clean. Yay!

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