Hello Fellow Hosts,
I hope people are hanging in there during this once in a century crisis. What are people’s thoughts on pricing their listings very aggressively in order to attract 28 minimum stays. Perhaps even going lower than what the place would rent as on the open rental market? My thinking is that some cash flow is still better than no cash flow. Of course all of this would need to be within reason and we still want to have the right type of guests so wouldn’t want to go too low either. What are people’s thoughts? We are based in the UK but I suspect it’s the same pretty much everywhere else.
I would be worried I would get a squatter, I would not go longer than 3 weeks so I would have some buffer to get someone out before 30 day.s. In the US it is hard to evict people, and even harder right now. I would rather my places sit empty than take on a long term tenant.
Your concern about too low a price is spot on, I would guess you would attract people with nowhere else to go and increase your risks.
Yes, that is a good point. I haven’t thought about that. It’s the same here in the UK. You basically can’t evict anyone for the foreseeable future. So the place needs to be priced in such a way that you cut out potential squatters - hence it can’t be too cheap either. Good point.
I totally agree. The risk is high given that many people are losing jobs and that you can’t evict. Higher still if go through Airbnb and can’t do the proper checks on the renter. Also, the price range may not be very relevant to someone that intends to squat (i.e. the difference between 2000 and 4000 per month means little to somebody that is actually planning to get at least 6 months rent free).
Yet another reason to rent to your local medical professionals. They always have job security but even more so now. Also, they (especially if local) already have another home and won’t want to squat in yours.
I would be worried about helping transmit the virus by bringing travellers into my community @Suntory
I agree providing accommodation for key workers particularly those working in health is the way to go.
We have a large building project happening here and this is where my direct bookings are coming from. Their first bookings are via one of the OTA’s, they are asked what their preferred breakfast pack is, they are met at the property, they are thanked and then the process of how to book direct is explained. Most guests are surprised at cost of booking fees and are delighted to save some money. One group, this is their fifth stay with me. My properties are staying 70% full without any bookings from Airbnb and $20K worth of forward bookings cancelled until July. I have refunded in full.
Thanks everyone for your feedback. This is all very helpful to know. I agree with the general consensus that I shouldn’t price it too low to attract problem guests. Also, I should prioritise key workers or medical professionals. So, this is what we have done:
reduced our prices for he next three months to a very cheap rate - but not ridiculously cheap. The payout would still be decent even if it’s much less than normal.
Minimum of 14 night stay
72 hours blocked off in-between stays (if indeed there are any)
signed up to AirBnB’s new COVID Responder scheme and provided another 10% discount
Thanks everyone for helping us to think this through. Unusual circumstances we are in. Wishing y’all the best.
I rented it out for 7 weeks at half the usual rate to a displaced college student and her boyfriend. I’d rather have the reduced revenue (and none of the turnover/cleaning hassle). They’re here from China on student visas, so I’m not worried about squatting.
People overstaying their visas is a major way we get what people refer to as illegal immigrants. What percentage become squatters, I’ve no idea. They generally don’t like to call attention to themselves and China is a safer place to be than the US now. If I were them I’d be going home as soon as I could get a flight out.