Multiple rooms, only getting bookings for one room at a time. What to do?

hi all.

my house is located some distance from city centre.
short walk to public transport, shops etc.
priced under average and close to the minimal pricing possible.
[ugh yes, I often wonder if it is worth it, thankfully I haven’t had horrible guests, had one nocturnal guest who had to be told to leave]

my feedback has been hovering around the 4.2 to 4.3 level. Not going to pretend the house is spotless, but polished floors tend to show every piece of dust.

I’ve found it difficult to break out of the budget pricing host zone. Guests don’t seem keen to book regardless of the low price offered. I’ve seen other hosts with pricing twice mine in my suburb, not sure if they are actually getting bookings or sitting vacant.

For the price I’m left wondering if it is worth while. Full time housemates pay better rent on average. (actually pay better rates on a per night rate if I’m not fully discounted).

I’ve used the discount for weekly and monthly bookings. Not convinced it is resulting in a highly average income.

so curious to hear from others what worked for them.

Things I know I need to do.

  • more and better photos. (add attractive female friend in photos because that seems to be an advertising thing)
  • chocolates ?
  • something else?

No no no no no no no no.

If you’d like to post a link to your listing maybe we could help.


not sure why you are against adding a person in photo.

but eh, each to their own.

A person? Sure, add a person. An attractive female? Ugh. But yeah, to each their own.


I think there is such a thing as too low of a price. You should make it clear that you’re renting out more than one room at a time. Lots of people traveling, booking last minute on the app don’t have a lot of time to click around, read reviews, etc. I won’t stay in an airbnb where there are no pictures of the bathroom. Maybe other people aren’t as picky as I.

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I would get a bed that can accommodate 2 people. Lose the desk if you need to. Get better linens for the bed. The room does not look appealing at all.

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Concur on the full bed with nice linens, or the current bed with nice linens (and a little colorful rug for cold toes) if bed upgrade is not in the budget. The pillow looks sad and lumpy; replace it with a nice plump one set up at an angle. Put some sort of art on the walls – photos of local sites or nature photos.(You can buy inexpensive frames and mats and sign them – your bio says you’re a photographer! Much more personal.) Hang a fern or something in the corner across from the bed, fake is OK. Put an electric kettle on the bureau with teas, instant coffee, sugar, creamer and some to go paper cups with lids in a nice basket with a colorful tea towel. Leave a few local magazines, maps and brochures that you can pick up for free, fanned out on the bureau or in a clear file holder on the wall. Is there any kind of view out the window? If so, take a daylight photo with the curtain open, if not, take a daylight photo with a sheer curtain closed, install a cheap blind for light control if needed. Lose the long dark curtain. Definitely include pic of bath. Caption your photos so people can imagine themselves staying there: “Your shared bath with plenty of towels and supplies.” “Closet and chest for your suitcase and clothes.” Etc. You don’t have to talk about the polished floors – they are lovely but we can see them! Consider a different listing title “Quiet retreat near airport, transport, university” Your description of yourself makes you sound like a reluctant host. Consider re-wording, (without giving up your identify or integrity!) something like “Happy to provide recommendations for restaurants, local sites and attractions, and respectful of your privacy. I enjoy photography and salsa dancing when not at my day job.” Then increase your price and see what happens.


Honestly, you need to rethink a lot of things. For one: re-write your profile. It’s way too much personal info. Your drinking habits are not something to advertise. You might think it looks good but it doesn’t, it really really doesn’t.
Make a short, professional and friendly profile.
I disagree with @dpfromva about putting out tea and coffee. That’s not your kind of place! Be honest and upfront about what you offer. Don’t try to sugarcoat anything. It’s a budget place but clean, friendly and safe.
Always keep in mind the kind of guests you want to attract. You don’t want fussy people who expect chocolates on the pillow and maid service, do you? So don’t even think about trying to appeal to them. Appeal to guests who will appreciate a fairly priced nice place to stay.
And agree with @dpfromva on the polished floors emphasis - drop it! Nobody cares about polished floors, seriously! Your place is humble but nice. Sell it as such!


This is a listing that I would skip over pretty quickly. The space description is nonexistent. The listing doesn’t even provide Essentials.

53 PM

Which of these items do you wish to carry with you?

The room is dreary. There doesn’t appear to have a living room to have a comfortable seat. The host’s profile is weird. There is nothing I can find that makes me want to stay here. Plus, there could be as many as five other guests staying in the place at the same time.


Can’t believe I missed this.

FFS @sleepyhouse. Have you beamed in here from the 1950’s?
Or possibly you’re a WUM.

Anyways, here’s a marketing idea:
You could offer a discount for successfully polishing the floors.


Gotta agree with @anon67190644. The pictures are boring; but don’t add a person, pretty or not. The title says “house for rent” and all I see in one dreary, unappealing bedroom. No shots of the rest of the interior, bath, other bedrooms, etc. Get that “attractive female” to help you decorate the place, not pose for photos!

Your personal detail is too much. Your grammar and spelling need serious revision.

You need something other than single army beds – all you’ll get are single travelers.

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Thanks for the feedback. Updating.

What do others suggest as examples of making the room appear less boring?
Links to your own examples?

Hello @sleepyhouse

Have you had a look at local listings in your area?

You have already been given lots of ideas her on how to make your room more attractive.

You can also look on Pinterest/IKEA (any furniture shop) for room ideas.

Take a theme that works with your house and use it for each room. Make sure you have co-ordinated, decent quality linens, towels, toiletries. And some co-ordinating accessories such as lamps, photos, plants, rugs etc.

One simple thing that would make a huge difference is to have co-ordinated, light furniture in a room and lighter accessories such as a small bedside lamp rather than the large black floor lamp in one of your other listings.

You’re a photographer, so your photos should be much better. You know how to light and dress a room. Make sure you have photos of shared rooms such as kitchen and living space.

You need to clearly outline which rooms guests have access to, how many rooms may be sharing bathrooms - ie how many rooms you rent out in total and how many bathrooms are available for them to share. You don’t mention at all in the listing you have linked to that this is one room of a number being let out in the property.

Personally I wouldn’t offer a washing machine for a budget traveller accommodation where people will just be there for the night.

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Make your mind up Sleepyhouse. Either you’re getting no bookings or book all kinds? You can’t have it both ways. Your place looks like nothing more than a sleazy hostel I’m afraid. I’d avoid.


Do the pictures during daylight hours and tart the place up a bit, add pics of the lav etc. Feels like a half assed attempt to market your gaff.

Looks like Prisoner Cell Block H five minutes before lights out.

If you are adding an attractive female friend in the picture, best ask her not to wear an orange jumpsuit.


The place looks unappealing and bare bones.
Your tone of writing doesn’t sound inviting, maybe even slightly hostile. And the whole listing doesn’t look like you care.

As others have pointed out:

  • Grammar and spelling.
  • Lack of information, photos,… (bathroom, communal spaces, other residents,…)
  • Where is the chair for the desk?

This is one of the photos of our former listing, also at the low end of the market. Apart from the bed, which is actually our bed when not having guests, there is absolutely nothing in that room that costs a lot of money:

  • Free artwork on the wall (A cut up free catalogue from an art exhibition).
  • Nightstands I designed and we made from 1 sheet of plywood: $US 15,00.
  • Lamps bought when on sale: $US 15 for the two.
  • Standard white linens: $US 20,00.
  • Towels ($US 15,00 a set) showing in the picture so people know we provide them. And it also “decorates” the photo making it less bare bones.
  • etc. …
    The prices above are estimates, I don’t remember exactly, but all in all it wasn’t a lot of money.


Hi Matthew

About putting a pic of a pretty lady in the room—Ask yourself what message you are trying to send and why. Are you renting the room or ???

I suspect the big black curtain is a black out curtain. I have those too except light colored.

You asked for ideas. One of my bedrooms is small (9 ft x 11ft). (2.75M X 3.35M) and not “exciting” but here are pics.

Notice there is a rug on the floor, the blackout curtains are a light color, and the comforter is brightly patterned. You can pick up a cheap pretty comforter at a big box store or on amazon. Also on Amazon you can find a some 100% cotton 400-600 count sheets for $30-$40 USD. 400 count sheets aren’t luxiourious but they are better than a lower thread count microfiber.

Everything in the room was purchased on clearance or at a discount retailer. If you invest a bit in making the room comfortable, you will earn it back in rentals plus more.

One person mentioned removing the desk & having a larger bed. You could easily get a full bed in the space if the desk was out. Maybe put a small fold up desk instead. All of this requires an investment. Decide your budget and do what you can; maybe do part now and change the bed later.

Of note, the TV isn’t blocking a usable closet. It is locked and is my owner’s closet.



Here’s a lovely budget listing in California, US, an expensive state. It’s more than your place but there’s kitchen and laundry use and the whole place looks clean and comfortable. Maybe if I was traveling the world another $10 a night wouldn’t be in the budget. Also, there’s a cleaning fee which makes it more expensive to just stay a single night.

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I agree with others that your pictures are poor. I wasn’t getting bookings either when I did my own pictures. Here’s the difference between what I could do vs a professional photographer - same room, same lighting.



My pictures were done by an AirBnB photographer a month ago for $84 USD but there’s plenty of photographers out there that will do great work for a reasonable price.

And I 100% agree with others above that say you should show pictures of all the spaces that guests have access to such as the bathroom, and if you make it available, the kitchen, patio, or whatever you allow guests to use.

I think your listings are great for budget travelers.

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Definitely important to browse other listings, too how your room compares to other similar sized ‘cells’.
If you find a good listing similar to yours, copy and paste, then edit the relevant bits to suit your listing.
Don’t have a human in the picture, it would distract, there’s good reason that estate agents only photo empty rooms! Have a look at estate agents listings, see how bright their pics look. Imagine how they take the pic, ie, the camera is waist height, to make the room look bigger.
Maybe add photos of the local interests to your ad.