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May 31, 2024
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How to turn your home into an Airbnb

Airbnb has taken the short-term hospitality industry by storm. Homeowners worldwide can generate additional income by renting out their properties. If you're a property owner wanting to generate some extra income, you want to know how to turn your home into an Airbnb.

This post covers the key things to know to do just that. We discuss converting your home into an Airbnb, the percentage Airbnb takes, turning your primary residence into an Airbnb, and more.

Can I convert my home into an Airbnb?

Before converting your home into an Airbnb rental, there are certain factors to consider.

First, the type of property you own plays a significant role. For instance, the difference between renting out a house and a condo will have different regulations and suitability for short-term rentals (STRs.)

Zoning laws, homeowners associations, and more can have an impact. There are also differing licensing requirements and occupancy limits. Furthermore, some cities and localities may restrict the days a property can be rented annually. Check if your property is permissible for use as a short-term rental in your area.

Second, location is a critical factor. Consider your property's location and surroundings.

Properties in popular tourist destinations, business areas, or anywhere near major attractions will typically be in higher demand. However, quiet homes in peaceful neighborhoods will also attract guests seeking tranquility.

Here are some of the most important tips on how to turn your home into an Airbnb:

  • Reseach local short-term rental laws.
  • Assess demand and competition in your area.
  • Get appropriate insurance coverage for STRs.
  • Ensure your property meets safety and accessibility standards.

What percentage does Airbnb take?

Understanding Airbnb's fees is paramount to your success as a host. Knowing exactly how much Airbnb charges will enable you to maximize your rental income and turn your property into a profitable Airbnb listing.

Airbnb charges a 3% standard host service fee, subtracted from the booking subtotal. The subtotal includes the nightly rate, cleaning fee, and additional guest fees. It also covers the cost of payment processing and customer support.

Additionally, Airbnb charges guests a service fee. This fee is typically between 14% and 20% of the booking subtotal, but it will vary based on the length of stay and total reservation cost.

Furthermore, you must be aware of potential additional charges. For example, value-added taxes (VAT) will be applied in certain jurisdictions, impacting NET profit.

To increase your profits, you need effective pricing strategies. This involves researching comparable listings in your area and setting competitive rates.

One of the best ways to do this is by utilizing a dynamic pricing tool. Airbnb has a built-in dynamic pricing tool to help you adjust your prices based on demand and market trends. In short, it optimizes your occupancy rates. However, Airbnb's dynamic pricing tool comes with only basic features. We recommend an intelligent, specialized third-party pricing tool like Keybee's dynamic pricing tool.

Promotional tools, such as special offers, last-minute discounts, and weekly and monthly pricing options, can also help.

Leveraging these strategies can help you buffer against Airbnb's fees and maximize your earnings.

Can you turn your primary residence into an Airbnb?

You don't need an extra property to rent to make money on Airbnb. You can choose to turn your primary residence into an Airbnb.

Turning your primary residence into an Airbnb offers opportunities and challenges. Opportunities include generating additional income from the comfort of your own home and meeting new people. It also provides flexibility, including renting it out while on vacation.

However, it's not for everyone. Hosting guests in your main home can feel like an intrusion of privacy. It can require significant time and effort to manage. Furthermore, it entails ensuring your home is constantly guest-ready which can be demanding.

A company like Keybee can help with guest screening to make sure the owner gets high-quality guests, as well as take care of cleaning guest rooms and common spaces to save hosts the hassle that comes with being a host.

Tips on managing privacy and security concerns

Hosting your primary residence as an Airbnb has privacy and security potentialities to consider. Below, we highlight some expert tips for managing privacy and security concerns.

  1. Separate living spaces: It's a good idea to create a separate living area for guests. This can include converting a basement, attic, or unused room into a guest suite.
  2. Secure personal belongings: Lock away any valuables and personal items in a secure place. A safe or closet with a lock and key are two of the best methods for peace of mind while hosting guests.
  3. Clear communication: Always establish clear communication. Start by setting out clear house rules and guidelines so your guests know what to expect and what they can do. Include off-limits areas, acceptable noise levels, etc.

Alternatives for hosting on Airbnb while living at the residence

For maximum privacy, consider renting only a spare room. This enables you to continue living on the property but maintaining your own space—all while earning.

Another option is to rent your property on Airbnb only when you're away. Occasional renting like this puts your home to good use without compromising your privacy and security. Keybee is one of the very few companies that helps hosts with management, even if that’s for a couple of weekends per year.

How can I put my house on Airbnb?

Getting started and listing your home on Airbnb involves a simple sequence of steps.

Follow the step-by-step instructions below to list your home on Airbnb.

  1. Create an account: Sign up for an Airbnb account. You will need to provide your contact information and verify your identity.
  2. Prepare your home: Your home must be guest-ready. This includes ensuring it is clean and well-maintained. It also needs to be furnished properly with bedding and essential amenities.
  3. Take and upload photographs: Shoot high-quality photos that showcase your home in its best light. Include amenities and unique aspects. Ensure good lighting.
  4. Write a detailed listing: Create an engaging title and a comprehensive home description. Include unique aspects, local attractions, and amenities.
  5. Set availability and pricing: Research local rates and set competitive pricing, updating the calendar with your available dates.
  6. Publish: After you've completed steps 1-5, you can publish your listing and start welcoming guests.


As we've outlined, how to turn your home into an Airbnb requires understanding fees, knowing how you want to let your property, and following concrete steps.

Once you're up and running, you'll likely want to consider promoting your property. By promoting your property effectively, you can increase your occupancy rates and optimize your earning potential.

Keybee's professional vacation rental management service can help. With Keybee, being a successful Airbnb host is made easy. With our flexible, all-in-one vacation rental management, you'll maximize your earnings as an Airbnb host.


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