After many years of hosting fatigue started to show up. When I started I remember to be so excited about this that despite I put a lot of work into making my guest happy, I didn;t care too much because the results were very rewardable (not just the money). Today I stop feeling that way and I don’t know why. In some part I guess is in part to what every job do and in other side I guess Airbnb has changed a lot. It certainly becomes more guests-friendly and I have lost “choice”. The choice to choose whom I should host, the choice of the price tag I should use, the choice of taking myself more than 10minutes to answer a request, etc. I mean Airbnb doesn’t force me to constrain myself but it clearly “suggest” me to do it in order to prevail relevant on the search results thus getting bookings. In the meantime AIrbnb is constantly evolving (which is good) but at a speed that is very hard to track. They makes changes to their platform or terms constantly and it is kind of a headache to stay in sync with all of them.
What is your personal experience with Airbnb and how did you overcome the inevitable fatigue?
I might not be qualified to answer because we’ve only been on Airbnb since December last year, However, we have been renting our apartment for several years.
I’ve had a very positive experiences with Airbnb - mostly really lovely guests. Before, our guests were mostly Americans (nothing wrong with that) but since we started with Air we’ve has guests from Russia, Switzerland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Korea, Australia and even more. I love meeting these people!
Every guest is a new experience and lots of fun
I pay no attention to Airbnb’s recommendations. Everything on the internet changes all the time and I’m fine with that
Hi Monica - I’ve been hosting since June 2015. Yes, initially, it was so cool meeting people from around the world. Now it is commonplace, and not as exciting. The fatigue is a real thing. I’m able to schedule some breaks between guests (not always) and am just loving not having guests right now. Thankfully my next group has only 2 in the party - I had several back-to-back groups of 5.
And yes, dealing with airbnb has become less fun. I really want them to add a line-item for my sales & occupancy taxes. The last three guests have been weird about that.
I trust that your next group or two will be those types of guests that make you remember the fun in it. Hopefully you can take some time to talk to them and learn about their lives - everyone is so interesting. Remember it’s the PEOPLE that make it rewarding.
Keep us posted!
Yes, in most part some guests gave me wonderful hosting experience but others arrived with a very cold actitude like the one who has payed for a top service and wants you to fill their expectations. No smile, no emphaty, just cold faces. At certain point I understand that I’m offering a service but based that my price quote is so low I would love to see some smilings from time to time. It wasn’t like this when I started hosting and I’m not sure what has changed but there must be something there that I’m missing.
I’m only in my third year of hosting. I have at least two other jobs and freelance work. That schedule prevents me from hosting daily or very frequently, I make an average of $2500/yr via airbnb. I don’t consider it a totally passive income as it does take work on my part, but most of it is work I would be doing anyway (cleaning). Overall, I’m very happy with airbnb. It’s worth it to me to pay the small fee for the verification process of guests, for the transfer of funds.
@Monica Thanks for posting this question and your observations and I really identify with what you have said. I have been hosting since April 2014 so I am beginning my third year. I would not have been able to rent my apartment in my rural area without Airbnb or HomeAway/VRBO so on a very real level I am grateful. I also find Air “guest” centric and for the life me I cannot understand why their platform cannot charge for taxes & pet fees and other fees as may be appropriate when other sites do it easily. Air keeps adding new ways for hosts to be reviewed but not a more convenient way for hosts to charge for services. I enjoy having guests from around the world and since my accommodation is completely separate I probably get less burn-out than other hosts who are sharing a living space. I have thought about quitting when I have been annoyed at Airbnb and their constant harping about being “better” hosts since I have treated our guests better than most 5 star hotels but then I get another booking and they sound nice and interesting so I shall continue on for awhile. Take care.
We have been hosting four years and at the end of year two we got the same fatigue. Because of this we changed the listing quite a lot so we would atract more of the type guest who we feel fits in to our hosting style. That worked out quite well. In addition we are hosting less. I keep the winther month blocked in the calender,. I also block also a few weeks in the summer, so that we have some time off. I feel that we have the right balance now.
All in all I am satisfied with Airbnb. I agree that there are a lot of changes to their platform and terms. But then I think that after all Airbnb is giving me the opportunity to host on a rural place. So I just live with the changes, at least for now.
I have been hosting for six years, almost since the beginning, (I have a listing number under 40k) and have overall been happy. It’s been much more income than I could get from a long term rental with far less trouble. In the beginning, the Air platform was funky. A lot like their budget competitions now. You got a lot of spam and bargain hunters, but in general guest expectations were very low so it was much easier to host in the early days than now. I kind of miss those days. As others have mentioned, they have changed about their platform and Now clearly coddle guests and push hosts on features like IB and lower pricing. They have sided with me on one set of bad guests and paid out damage claims. In six years I’ve had only two sets of guests I would called very very bad. The others are mostly ok, and a few outstanding ones who are still my friends to this day and invite me to their places to stay for free.
I have also tweaked my listing to make sure I get guests who are a fit. I collect cleaning, security and tax so that bargain hunters and cheapskates are discouraged. It’s not premium priced but fairly priced for the area and amentities, which guests always write that they appreciate.
Personally, Airbnb been a lifesaver in the recessionary period when I was experiencing financial distress. I like meeting guests from all over the world, but the diversity of guests from places like Poland, Ukraine, Estonia and Prague have slowed greatly, and now I get mostly Canadians and Americans. Host burn out is inevitable and I use seasonal lows to take a much needed break from the back to back bookings I get in the winter, the high season here.
I already answered once but am compelled to answer again.
In 2008 I wanted to go into the bnb business, but at the time trying to figure out all the licensing, etc., was to much.
So I’m very thankful that airbnb made it so easy to get into business - really, as corny as it sounds, the business I feel like I was meant to be in. Yes, they made it to easy so after a calendar full of bookings I was scrambling to get business insurance and my sales & occupancy taxes straight. But I did that. So far I’ve invested most of my income but have a basement ‘semi-private apartment’ that I am proud of and will increase the value of my home should we need to sell.
I will also say that I find I need more little vacations since doing airbnb! Maybe especially because we do it in our home, and we have a very busy family life. And I’m an introvert.
So maybe one way to beat the fatigue is to put away some earnings if possible and take yourself away for a weekend once a quarter??
I’m also thankful for the people I’ve met, INCLUDING you all, the hosts I’m sharing this journey with.
I just had a few days off and the fatigue is waning and I’m looking forward to greeting Ingo and Georg this evening, who are actually from Wimdu. Then I’m back-to-back for a bit. “Let the money roll in, and the guests stay out until late late evening”
No I am not. Rented my place to 3 guests and 2 trashed it and 1 stole $2000+ of clothing and other things. My friend also said she airbnb her place once and it got trashed. I have a feeling these things happened more often then we think.
I guess part of the hosting experience is to try and avoid this burn out in the first place. Take vacations from AirBnB even if you are still at home. Give yourself a chance to relax a little and not have to worry about guests for a week here and there. It really does go a long way to keeping you sane and happy (two qualities that AirBnB guests seem to enjoy)
Since last I answered I will update. I think in the year since I wrote the above opinion, Air has changed a lot and veered dramatically in favor of the guest. The new Worst/Best Review feature sums it all up.
I am booking more on other platforms so not to put all my eggs in one basket. But I am still afraid they kind of are all in one basket.