Superhost burnout

First off, I think you’re obsessing a bit – touching up the paint every two weeks??? Maybe once a year!

Elaborate botanical garden? Fine, if that’s your hobby, but don’t blame hosting for its upkeep. That was your decision to make it elaborate and time consuming, rather than planting perennials and letting them.

Thirteen towels? As others have said, never let a guest know you even own thirteen towels. We give two towels, two hand towels and two wash clothes per visit for 1-2 guests.

Wanting to make money is great, but you MUST take time for yourself – block off a week here, and a week there, and get out of the house!


Well, I still set my base price, and Beyond Pricing just goes by that. Their stats have been more helpful than anything, because they are educating me on booking trends. They are giving me confidence to hold at my current base price and wait, and that has paid off!! I have to watch it because they cut rates when the vacancy is a day away but I do book last-minute very often. So they have helped me. And, they have increased prices for special events. They already increased my price by over 100% for the inauguration but I’m blocking those dates until after the election. I am depending on them heavily to set the right price for that event. I’m hoping to earn enough to pay for my insurance for the year.

I don’t feel the need to be a ‘good deal’. I feel the need to be a ‘fair deal’. I need to be sure that my family’s labor is valued, that I am actually making a profit. I’m not doing it for free, it’s not a charity. I need to know that people are willing to pay for a good value. I did start out thinking ‘sharing community’ but as I put more and more into the space - and I started very raw - I realize that “A workman is worth his wages” and people have to pay for a good time. I’ve looked, trust me, and find NOTHING to compare for what I offer for a price less than 50% more what I charge, as I’ve searched other parts of my area (not in DC, outside, for my family vacation).

I don’t offer a hotel room - I offer two bedrooms, and little kitchen and ‘living’ area, and a full breakfast. I offer a friendly host that will listen to their stories of their day, offer to drive them to a swimming pool when the temps are over 100 f (like it was yesterday, the family had trooped into DC valiantly 2 straight days at those temps), I give them fresh ginger to make a tea when their son has a fever, let them have some food if their flight is messed up and they check-in after the local pizza place has closed, loan bikes so they can enjoy the gorgeous bike paths in my area, offer a yard with a VERY cool swing and a place to kick the soccer ball, drive the dad to the pharmacy late at night because his little daughter is constipated… Should I do all of that and charge less than 1 sterile hotel room? I do all those things because I want to and I want to make the world a happier place. I share what I can share willingly. So I don’t compare myself to a local hotel.

How many hotels are offering such a beautiful garden as you do, @diamond54? Only those for which you pay $200+, and, that garden is somewhere on the property . What hotel is offering a private place, not on top of or below other guests? How many hotels are painting every 2 weeks to keep the place fresh? Only those you’re going to pay $$$$ for. So think it through - perhaps you are so burned out because you are undervaluing yourself.

I think it’s true - though we don’t discuss it so much on this forum - hosting gets to us emotionally. It’s constantly having some one say “Yay! You’re a success!!” or “BOO - bad pillows!”. It’s very, very personal. We put our heart into hosting and then are constantly evaluated. Anything less than 5* CAN feel like a judgement against us. How many times do we look right past the 5 * ratings and thing “OH MY GOD!! A THREE FOR CLEANLINESS!!” Or, the worst, when they are disrespectful of your place. Or, a dry spell of no bookings. I’m still grappling with that myself. We have to know for ourselves that we did the best job we could, but sometimes people are still going to be unhappy. We can’t kill ourselves trying to keep them so.

I have to go now - but I really feel for you and really wish you a breath of fresh air from somewhere!!


I agree. Get a friend to help. Take a day off.

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Maybe instead of taking one time of for a week, try to block of 1 day a week. Or what kind of bookings do you get? I just get one day bookings and it is very tiring to clean the room every day so that the place looks perfect again for the next guests. But if I were you, I would see which days are usually the most wanted and then block one of the days during the week that are less wanted. There is a reason, why people should rest on Sundays. :slight_smile:


That works - or - what I do is once I start to get bookings filling in, I block off the night or two that remains between. Sometimes I end up with back-to-backs, but I think this way I maximize my opportunity to get a booking, and fit in my breaks with what’s left over.

I do that once in a while., block a day off. Im getting much better at the cleaning speed.It used to take me 4 hrs w laundry now I have it down to maybe 1 1/2 hrs. I raised the cleaning fee from 45 to 48. The guesthome is 79, I was thinking of going to 85…


Do it!!! if you really don’t get bookings, you can lower it. Also, try Beyond Pricing - i think the first month is free.


Everyone on this forum feel burn out at one point except may be couple of people but that’s a different story:).
I felt burned out during season when the minimum stay was 1 day. Non stop bed changing, corresponding with guests and dealing with crazys was too much. That’s when I got this feeling that I need a break.
I changed my ways now and do longer terms. My minimum is 5 days. I have working guests who are never home and there is hardly any work.
It only takes 1 bad guest to feel burn out.
13 towels is a towel crime. Not one hotel would let him use these many towels. Just put one set for a week and see how it goes.
I hope you did the garden for your pleasure solely. If you did it for guests then it’s all your " fault":). Some people will appreciate it , some won’t even notice existence of it. I would not do anything special like this for guests especially if it requires so much work.

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Raise your prices and set minimum rental dates. I get very few one night rentals requests anyway (I have a cleaning fee) but I’m beginning to resent even the 2 night requests over a weekend. I raised my price by 20% and set a 3 night minimum and I made more money in the past 2 months doing much less work.


Good words, @Yana_Agapova,

Sometimes the one bad guests does take the wind out of our sails - no, the smile out of our hosting - but eventually decent people come back our way and that helps.

Yana, do you make the same or more money with those longer stays? I know it’s worth it to you either way. For a long time we offered no discount for longer stays, but I’m beginning to think that doing so, now that we are back in school, would be a good idea.

Oh, and for what it’s worth - about 80 groups - all had a stack of towels - only one towel abuser in my experience. Personally, when I show up and get only one towel, I don’t like it, even if I never use more than one. In fact, our family of 5 usually shares towels. But a stack of towels feels like luxury. Just me, maybe.

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Damn. Host fatigue really is real! If anyone is burnt out to the point where they’d rather have someone else do it, @stewart might be able to help.

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I solve this by not even looking at the star ratings. I’ve been a solid 4.5 since the day I started in 2009 and could care less if someone left low stars. But as I said, I don’t even check them.

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Yes, I didn’t even know how to look at them - I just saw the total the guest’s left. I tripped upon it by mistake one day. Made me full of self-doubt. I don’t look anymore. Not worth it.

I can answer that …yes. but only for not season. Much more then last year. But it might not work for everyone. What I mean is that I am like Kona in a dead season. There is very little chance that I will rent out room for more than 35-40$ a day.
I don’t offer anything unique, it’s just a pretty room close to airport. Most likely the best case scenario is that I will rent may be half of the month. .
I did my calculation: 40$ per night,15 nights (big IF), it’s 600$. If all of those guests are 1 nighters I have to clean and change beds 15 times a month.Spend time answering inquires. And then deal with 15 different guests.
The probability of having just one nighters is 85% as 85% of my guests in a past were just that.
Now I charge 1k$ a month for a room, and I clean it once a week. As I mentioned my guests are all working people meaning they are never home.
The last time I saw any of them was a week ago.
Yes there are people here non stop but I know their schedule already and I am comfortable to live the way I did before and their presence does not bother me a bit.

With you for example it’s a different story. Your city is always busy with tourists. It’s like mine in season.
I charged at times even 100$ a day for a room. But on average it was 80$. I don’t think I can get 2400$ a month for one room, it’s not realistic. But… I was thinking on how to keep longer stays guests even during winter and may be give them good weekly rate of 600$. This way I would be making the same 2400$ a month.
My projections for a year are the same as last year numbers but with much less work.

There are many variations. SInce i tried longer stays i dont want to go back to 1-2 days stays. Too much work, i guess i am lazy…


I’m not sure what parts is burning you out?? Is it mostly just the redundant chores of cleaning, tending to your garden, and maintenance? If that’s the only issue then more money will fix all that.

You mention your first bad guest was the one who used 13 towels. If that is your first bad guest then you obviously aren’t burned out on guests. But then I think you were the one in the A/C thread that was irritated with the wasteful guests. So maybe it is a combination of both.

Don’t play around with rasing from 45 to 48 for cleaning, and 79 to 85 for nightly rate. Increase cleaning fee to 65, and nightly rate to 95. You say your guesthouse looks like a mini 4 sesasons with a private beautiful garden. Ambience has a price too. You will feel a lot better scrubbing toilets when you get paid more for it!


@diamond54, would you mind sharing your listing? You can pm me if you’d like.

So true. I had two bad sets of guests back to back. This next set isn’t communicating with me at all so who the hell knows what time they’ll be checking in today. But I remember the girl who stayed here before the duds. She was glorious! Polite, clean, quiet, gushed over how much she loved the place. Left the most heartwarming entry in my guestbook and my public review was wonderful. We just need another good guest @diamond54! Tip the scales, make everything alright again :slight_smile:

But it’s true what the others are saying. You have to make your life as simple as possible without compromising the quality of the service you deliver. Have a little re-think about what you’re doing and see if you can tweak a few things. We are all cheering for you!!!

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What is Beyond Pricing?

Coming late into the conversation. When a situation is not working, it is best to specifically ~identify~ the individual aspects that are the source of the ‘problem’, and addressing them head on. I am sure just about everyone here has gone through the process of changing or eliminating the parts that weren’t working, and it took some time to come into equilibrium.

In my case for example, it was the 1-day minimum that was making it no fun once, now it is 3-day minimum. The 2nd one was having my lady do the cleaning (she has another business), bad move, all too hectic, now I hire someone and no more hassles over logistics. 3rd, bring your own equipment, do not depend on me for it, and if it doesn’t work or fit is not my fault.

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I never look at the ratings. And what I really don’t look at are the “what can the host do better” remarks. I’ve got the Super B…ch Host badge that’s not going to last long I can tell, and I will not give a hoot. What counts is getting decent reviews and having decent prices.

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