I’m a Denver Airbnb Superhost who just went through the initial phases of the Plus consultation (and was given an $8,500 proposal). I want to believe in the future ROI, but anecdotal research on the internet is overwhelmingly negative. Did anyone see increased occupancy or booking rates? Better guests? Would love to hear some positivity!!
Good topic, @Jordy. I’d be really interested to know too. We have great guests and full occupancy so I don’t see how Plus could improve matters but I’d love to hear otherwise.
Agreed. I’d need to be able to charge significantly more per night while keeping the same general occupancy (they quote on average 22% more). There’s a world where the numbers line up, but for some reason, I’m doubtful.
Over on the Airbnb CC there have been numerous threads about Plus. Never read anything but horror stories about it and not only do those hosts say it didn’t increase their bookings, their bookings totally dried up. Of course, if there are hosts for whom Plus is working superbly, they probably wouldn’t bother to come to any of the forums and mention that.
Airbnb advised that occupancy was down 22% in Providence while costs for heat and electricity, water, and food - I offer continental breakfast, coffee, tea, half and half etc to all weekend guests - have all increased.
I am looking to add new interest to my listings without overspending.
I was recruited for Plus back in May for one of my units and so researched everything pretty thoroughly. What I found was a lot of hosts complaining about their photos they had been assigned, guests with higher expectations, a lot of cost for changing and fixing up their listing that they didn’t necessarily agree with and discouragement from not really being able to raise their prices and maintain their previous occupancy. I decided it just wasn’t worth the extra trouble for me and declined.
I was a little afraid that I would regret my decision if most of my neighborhood went Plus and waited to see what the fallout might be. However, it is now 7 months later and only one listing on my side of town went Plus (and I was surprised to see which one it was). I watch all of the listings in my area and I’m actually afraid to look at his anymore because his star rating is falling steadily and he is not charging anymore than he did last year at this time. I honestly feel really bad for him as it was a pretty strong-sell they did for Plus and I might’ve also given in and been in that place now.
TL:DR: I declined Plus and am increasingly grateful that I did.
Obviously there must be some markets or some hosts where Plus might be a benefit but I haven’t personally been convinced. I recently had some hosts stay with me and they have 4 Plus properties on the West Coast and they were very emphatic in saying, “don’t give in, don’t do it.” They said that it hasn’t helped them at all and that their guests seem more demanding and that their rates haven’t been able to increase at all and that Airbnb seems to treat them worse now than before. FWIW . YMMV.
I completely agree with that. There’s definitely a selection bias going on. …but that said, some positive, happy hosts seem like they’re active members of the various online Airbnb communities. And yet, none of them seem to post positive experiences about Plus. That has to mean something…right?
Your thought process is exactly what I’m experiencing now. I’m almost at the point where if they offered me Plus for free, with no modifications, I still wouldn’t do it – it just seems to lead to risk, not reward. The upside is minimal at best.
I’m not actually sure why I’m still allowing the process to go on. Some strange mix of curiosity + politeness I think…
Wow, that is a strange mix, and not worthy of your time or effort.
My personal experience, of the Plus invite, had me pulling out (including my hair) after the so called inspection, seeing their rubbish photos, and being subjected to “do this, do that” ad nauseam, simply because they were either stupid, lazy or both.
The programme is outsourced to another company I believe, possibly several across the globe but judging by the many negative threads on this forum, they all play by the same rules. Your possible politeness will be wasted on them; I found communicating with them difficult, rude and at times tinged with hostile envy. An example was a demand to provide proof that guests are provided with coffee making facilities, when one of the inspection photos clearly evidenced this in the guest dining room.
I could go on, and on, but it’s too painful, even a year later.
I would think that plus guests would have really high expectations. If those expectations are not met, it will result in poor reviews. Maybe you can search for some plus properties nearby and read their reviews to get an idea.
We have an apartment in the same building as our son in Cape Town - his is Plus, ours isn’t, as we have only had ours a short time and we have more non-Airbnb guests. Possible almost half of the apartments (studios) in the block are STRs, so having Plus enables his to stand out. He says he has definitely seen an increase in bookings since going Plus, and it has helped to raise his prices, though only marginally as the market is highly competitive.
What do you mean by:
I’ve commented to several posts on the Plus Subject (see attached below) so without repeating myself but adding to my prior commentary:
I have been Plus for a little over a year. I have been able to increase my rates and increase my year to year revenue by about 15-20% from prior year.
I have NOT noticed that people specifically select my listing because it is Plus, or that many are even aware that it is PLUS. I think it is selected because it provides a product that is a little different than other AirBNB properties in my region. I will suggest that my listing is higher up in search queue than nonPLUS
With that said, I am still frustrated with the lack of PLUS CS support; it still takes weeks to address changes to pictures. And there is a still a disconnect and limitations between ABNB CS and ABNB CS+ So I question whether it is worth staying in.
Prior Reference post.
Your picture looks familiar. I reached out to a few Plus hosts directly via Airbnb, I wonder if that’s it
Regarding your question, they made certain recommendations that I would need to comply with in order to meet Plus standards. Some are mandatory (2 bedside tables per room), some were optional but would improve the space (new dining table). I’m allowed to give feedback, but the initial price tag was $8500 for the various things to be done, including the furniture delivery/project management fees.
My thought process is that I have to outpace those improvement costs before I make any real profit from going to Plus. A few of the improvements like a new lighting fixture are permanent and stay with the property, but many are simply decor that will begin depreciating almost immediately. The consultative part of the process was fairly pleasant, and I don’t discount that many of these changes would make the property “nicer” overall. But if I can only charge a few dollars more per booking, it’s going to take a long time to pay those improvements back…
Two other things to note with PLUS:
Your host fee increases a little. I’m having a hard time finding the number now, but I think it goes from 3% to 5%.
You’re also agreeing to market that property EXCLUSIVELY on Airbnb (or your own private site). IMO, if they’re demanding exclusivity, they should be paying for that, not asking the host to pay more. The way Airbnb is going, I’m not sure I’d agree to that.
Thanks for the clarification. when I first read it, I interpreted it as that AirBNB was giving you a proposal that you could increase your revenue by $8500.
The items that they asked of me were miscellaneous items like decorative pillows, plants, artwork, so nothing that was excessive.
My fees have not gone up since joining PLUS, nor did I have to pay a $200 initial fee, as some have said they had to.
- I did discover that as a PLUS, you are NOT entitled to any host cancellations; in nonPLUS I believe you are allowed up to 3 per year. Provided another reason that I question the value (for a host) to be in PLUS. If you’re doing great as a SuperHost, and have no reason for the $8500 investment, I’d say until they revise the PLUS program that makes it more host friendly, I’d tell them to take a hike.
Now that is truly scary…