When bringing someone into your home on Airbnb you want to make sure to set expectations, especially on the duration of their stay. Here are 5 important things to consider when setting minimum and maximum stay limits on your Airbnb listing.
1. Is one night enough?
People travel for all different reasons. Some people always go on week long vacations, some travel only over long weekends, while others may go to a city to work for a month.
You need to ask yourself if people are likely to stay at your place for only one night. To be on the safe side you can always leave the minimum stay at one night and see what the response is. If you realize that people never want to stay for only a night, you can always set the minimum stay at two nights or more.
2. Do you have help for back-to-back stays?
Well what happens when you’re out of town for a week renting out your place while you’re gone? Say that you get one person who wants to stay Monday and Tuesday night. Then another guest requests to stay Wednesday night and Thursday night. Now you’re in a jam and need someone to enter the place to clean and prepare it for the second guest at some point on Wednesday.
Of course this may not be a problem if you have a neighbor or friend who can help you out. Or you could use a convenient cleaning/guest greeting service like Urban Bellhop or Proprly. But if these neither of these solutions sound appealing to you, then this is the perfect example where you should set a minimum stay of at least three or four nights while you’re gone in order to maximize profit.
3. Should you cut a deal for longer stays?
Airbnb offers lots of pricing options including dynamic daily pricing that you can manually set, special weekend pricing or weekly and monthly rates. In some cases it may make sense to offer potential guests a discounted rate if they are staying for an extended period of time. Say your place is priced at six nights for the price of seven nights while your competition isn’t. This could be the small advantage to help you land that guest who is indecisive.
4. How much cleaning is needed for each stay?
If your place has several bedrooms and requires a lot of cleaning and laundry, you may reconsider allowing guests to only stay for one night. Whether a guest sleeps in bedding for one night or seven nights, you or your cleaning crew will still need to spend the same amount of time washing them.
If you find yourself overwhelmed with laundry over one and two night stays you may want to try setting a longer minimum stay requirement. That way you can spend less time on laundry and guests can spend more time being comfortable in your space!
5. What is the seasonality of your location?
All locations have different desirability depending on the time of year. For example, ski towns in Utah or Colorado will typically have much greater demand in the Winter. Beach destinations will obviously see spikes in the Summer months. As a host, you need to be aware of this data and set your minimum and maximum stays accordingly.
In seasons where demand is waning you can remove the minimum stay requirement to get as many guests as possible. But when the season is busy and guests are plentiful, you should really consider lengthening the minimum stay requirements in order to cut down on extra cleaning and turnover and maximize the experience of each guest.
Make sure you have answers to all of these questions in order to get the most out of maximum and minimum stays for your listing!
Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/matthijs/82616861/