Airbnb Expert Opinion Blog

WHAT CAME FIRST? – Airbnb Expert


Till one yr ago, I lived in a rented, three bed room, three toilet residence in an artsy enclave of Los Angeles, California. I can’t inform you how much I beloved this house. To really understand why this residence meant a lot to me, I’ve to share some slightly private info.

My ex-husband was a sports activities advertising government, who climbed up the company ladder by taking more advanced positions with new sports groups. In consequence, we had to move quite a lot of occasions. In all those years, I by no means felt like I lived in an actual residence as a result of every little thing all the time felt short-term. Not solely might we never settle into a house, the houses by no means felt fairly right either. I noticed later that it wasn’t the house, it was the wedding.

The collapse of my marriage totally destroyed me, each emotionally and financially, so an enormous cause why this house meant a lot to me was that it was the place I recovered from the devastation of my marriage and where I “found myself” once more. One more reason why I beloved this residence was as a result of it was completely configured to be an Airbnb.

The house featured an extension that included a front room, rest room, main bedroom and enormous walk-in closet. The extension was constructed onto the entrance of the home, so as somebody entered the house, the door in the foyer to the suitable went to the extension (later generally known as “my area”) and the door to the left went to the world that featured two bedrooms, two loos, a kitchen and a dwelling space with a hearth.

I lived in that home for nearly three years before I turned an Airbnb host. It wasn’t until I began hosting that I noticed how ultimate it was for me to have my very own separate and personal dwelling area.

The home was the first residence of a couple who had moved to Virginia for career advancement. I used to be hesitant to lease a house from a resident owner, as a lot of these landlords are likely to need to transfer again into their house, and I only needed to maneuver when the selection was mine to go away.

Six months ago I received a call from a notable Airbnb government informing me that my position as an “Airbnb Brand Advocate” had been observed by a number of executives in the corporate office. The caller needed to personally let me know that Airbnb appreciated the time, power and assets I dedicated to providing useful firsthand host and guest ideas, together with worldwide Airbnb listing recommendations to those that adopted me because the self-appointed “Airbnb Expert” on social media.

I used to be touched by the news and set out that night for a celebratory dinner with my son. Sadly, my comfortable mood was brief lived. Two hours later, my telephone rang. It was the home house owners informing me that they have been shifting again, and I solely had 60 days to vacate!

At this level, I had been an Airbnb host for one and a half years. During that point (and to this present day), I learn every single on-line article about Airbnb from around the globe. Nearly all of these articles report on, and theorize about, how Airbnb is being blamed for rising rental costs and housing shortages. I call the topic “The Airbnb Debate” and created a Pinterest board dedicated to the plethora of stories articles concerning the problem(s).

While I used to be aware of the worldwide claims about housing shortages and insane rental prices, I was unsure how a lot of this info was hype and how a lot was reality. In any case, when the almighty buck comes into play, individuals have been recognized to magnify. Once I jumped on my pc to see what was obtainable in my space, I was shocked by the shortage of options and even more aghast with the prices landlords have been asking.

My lease had not been raised in 4 years, which allowed me to save lots of my Airbnb earnings. After my marriage wiped me out on the age of 45, I had been footslogging away ever since to attempt to make my method back onto strong floor. Before Airbnb, I simply might never get ahead. Each time I might get ahead, one thing would occur to set me right again to zero again. There have been many, many occasions once I needed to rob Peter to pay Paul in an effort to hold issues going. Airbnb was really a Godsend. Although I very reluctantly had to dip into my Airbnb financial savings various occasions, I used to be capable of save $25,000 in the first yr and was as much as $40,000 after one and a half years.

I had experienced sufficient upheaval in my life. My son and I weren’t solely settled into our house, we liked our group. My house was in the hub of the top dance studios on the earth. As more dancers stayed with me, I regularly honed my Airbnb to serve the wants of those young artists. That’s one of many explanation why I didn’t need to transfer to a new area and then have to vary my “brand” to fit a special “audience” (sort of visitor). As an example, I am keen on Santa Barbara, but if I moved there, nearly all of my visitors can be traveling retired couples. To study more about why I needed to stay locally, please learn my weblog titled “And then came Airbnb”.

My residence was cozy, snug and alluring and every guest room had its own personal rest room. While many Airbnb hosts and friends are completely satisfied to share a toilet, my Airbnb catered to an audience who’re prepared to pay a bit extra for the privilege of not having to share a toilet.

As I searched for the same residence in my neighborhood, I felt like I used to be on the lookout for tooth on a hen. To make issues worse, houses that met with the identical standards as the home I used to be in, featuring issues like new home equipment, ample area and gated parking, were not solely few and much between, they have been priced at more than double my present lease.

I don’t know what I might have finished at the time, had I not had my Airbnb financial savings to turn to. How else would I’ve provide you with the required first and last month’s lease, along with a deposit that equaled a full months’ lease? To not mention the cost of shifting, including including personal touches to the new house, comparable to paint, window coverings, and so on.

I saw an ad for an open house for a house that had a lot of the features I needed and was less than a mile from the one I used to be sadly having to go away. Once I arrived, there was a line of more than 20 individuals ready to tour the home. This was my first expertise venturing out to “shop” for a new rental, and it completely freaked me out. The home scored quite excessive on all the things I needed in a house aesthetically, however the lease was sky-high. I used to be so distraught on the thought of shifting, and so fearful I might not be capable of find a suitable residence in my area, that I informed the landlord giving the tour that I needed to fill out an software. It turns out that six other individuals stated the identical thing, so the home ended up in a bidding conflict which I lastly gained.

As soon as I moved from my good house, into my less than good residence, I gave deeper thought to the idea of how Airbnb could be affecting housing stock and the cost of rental models. After studying all the web articles on the topic, and after experiencing it firsthand, that is what I got here up with.

I have to preface this by saying that this concept is predicated on what I name, “educated conjecture.”

I feel that landlords began to hike charges, and a surge of people turned Airbnb hosts at just about the identical time. As landlords realized that they might get the higher rental charges, they continued to edge the prices up. As more individuals have been discovering it troublesome to cowl their lease, they turned to hosting on Airbnb to assist make ends meet. At the similar time, individuals who have been dwelling in rentals that have been once considered priced “fairly,” have been now relating to their rental as being a “deal” and weren’t budging. As individuals stopped shifting, the inventory continued to tighten up. Because the inventory tightened up, landlords continued to charge extra. Since individuals might offset their lease by turning into Airbnb hosts, tenants might meet the calls for of the brand new larger rental charges. It’s a query of provide and demand. If individuals are prepared to pay, then landlords can proceed to cost their rates.

Along with this, some Airbnb hosts decided to leverage the Airbnb mannequin into a full-time business. At the similar time, landlords also realized that by turning their rental unit(s) into an Airbnb, they might yield extra revenue from the property than in the event that they rented the unit out on a everlasting foundation. This lowered the inventory, which continued to drive prices up and continued to (in many instances) pressure individuals to show to the shared financial system to complement their revenue.

So in the question of what got here first the hen (Airbnb) or rising rents and tightened inventory (the egg), I would have to say it was the egg – however only by a hair. While triggered by the egg, the 2 shortly turned simultaneous. To make issues worse The Airbnb “operators” (click HERE to examine Airbnb “operators”) who do not stay in the houses they listing on Airbnb, added to the tightened inventory and rising rents. As well as, as I say in my All You Want Is Love & Airbnb weblog, I firmly consider that Airbnb “operators” take away from the optimal Airbnb expertise.

I was lately asked by a reporter if I consider that Airbnb contributes to landlords gauging tenants? Whereas my reply to that’s “Yes, in part,” I don’t fault Airbnb hosts for not being prepared to notably scale back their lifestyle as a way to “starve out” greedy landlords, with hopes that landlords will drop rental charges to a extra affordable degree. I like Airbnb hosts for their dedication, hospitality and onerous work. I feel it’s sad that because the “little guy” tries to get forward, the government instantly sharpens their fangs and works on methods they can sink their tooth into Airbnb revenue. I’m irritated with the Airbnb “operators” of all types who have turn into the dangerous apples which might be spoiling the barrel for the remainder of us. I really like Airbnb, however I feel that for one of the best curiosity of nearly all of hosts (over 80% of whom reside within the house they host in), Airbnb ought to remove Airbnb operators solely. This may then depart that “non-hosted” brief term rental market to corporations like VRBO, who can then function the goal for the media and political warmth.


I am grateful for Airbnb on so many levels. I owe part of my recovery from the top of my marriage to Airbnb. Because of Airbnb, I discovered a brand new sense of objective and my faith in humanity was restored after I skilled one candy and type visitor after one other. With out Airbnb, I would have by no means been capable of lastly get forward financially. With out my Airbnb savings, I would have been utterly overwrought when I received the unhappy news that I needed to transfer and would have needed to notably decrease my lifestyle.

Amazingly two of my Airbnb visitors truly moved with me, and I have not had various days without visitors in my new Airbnb. Apparently sufficient, my Airbnb also gave me a sense of continuity in the course of the transition to my new house. Sadly, my Airbnb revenue is not being saved for my imminent retirement, and even tucked away for a rainy day. As an alternative, the income is being utilized in its entirety to complement my lease, which is now greater than double what it was in my earlier house.  I’m grateful that Airbnb allowed me to “keep going” and that I was capable of avoid my life being totally disrupted with something like having to move to a unique neighborhood, and so forth. I now often spend time scouring the internet to seek out just the best residence, that’s priced extra fairly than the one I’m in. Once I discover that needle in a haystack, I’ll be sure you bounce right on it after which pray that I can sit tight for quite a few years.

With the new and unpredictable change within the American government (which affects the world financial system) there isn’t a saying what different elements are going to return into play. I just hope that there comes a time quickly when the typical individual can make ends meet, and the place internet hosting friends is completed for the human and monetary rewards and not from such a pressing need.