How to Make Money with Airbnb: Beginner’s Guide

How to Make Money with Airbnb: Beginner’s Guide

In recent years, the gig economy has reshaped the traditional job market, encouraging more individuals to diversify their income streams. Among various side hustles and entrepreneurial ventures, Airbnb has emerged as a prominent player. This guide aims to introduce you to the lucrative world of Airbnb hosting, demonstrating how to make money with Airbnb!

Airbnb is more than just a buzzword in the travel industry; it’s a revolutionary platform that has altered the way people think about accommodation. As we explore the concept, we'll share insights on how to capitalize on this trend and start earning money through Airbnb, adding a robust pillar to your financial portfolio.

What is Airbnb?

Airbnb began as a simple idea: what if you could turn extra space in your home into a bed for travelers, much like a bed and breakfast? Fast forward to today, and Airbnb has become a global phenomenon, offering more than just a bed to weary travelers. It's a full-fledged marketplace for rental accommodations that allows property owners to list their spaces and guests to book them for short or long-term stays.

The platform has made significant inroads in the travel and accommodation industry by allowing people to book unique homes and experiences around the world. From a shared room in an apartment to a luxurious villa, Airbnb's range encompasses a vast array of lodging types, catering to different needs and preferences.

Since its inception, Airbnb has shown exponential growth, becoming synonymous with alternative travel accommodations. Travelers opt for Airbnb not only for competitive pricing but also for the authentic and personal experiences it offers, often beyond the reach of traditional hotels.

On Airbnb, hosts can list a variety of properties, including:

  • Single rooms or a suite of rooms
  • Entire apartments or houses
  • Secondary units like guest houses or in-law suites
  • Unique accommodations such as treehouses, yurts, or castles
  • Vacation homes

This diversity in listings means that almost anyone with a space to share can potentially become an Airbnb host. As we proceed, we will explore the essentials of becoming a host and how to monetize your property effectively on Airbnb.

Can You Make Money with Airbnb?

The question on many aspiring hosts' minds is whether there is real earning potential in Airbnb hosting. The answer is a resounding yes, with numerous success stories of hosts who have substantially supplemented or even replaced their traditional income streams by listing their property on Airbnb.

Airbnb offers a platform for hosts to not only make extra money but also to capitalize on the assets they already have - their property. Success stories range from those making a few hundred extra dollars a month to cover bills to those who have turned Airbnb hosting into a six-figure income. The key to these success stories often lies in the hosts’ ability to create a unique and welcoming space, understand their market, and provide exceptional service to their guests.

One of the attractive aspects of Airbnb is the flexibility it offers. Hosts decide when their space is available and set their house rules. This means that hosting can be tailored around your lifestyle and commitments, making it an ideal side hustle or a full-time venture, depending on your goals and availability.

But what if you don't have a space to rent? Airbnb’s ecosystem offers more ways to earn money than just listing properties. Here’s how to make money with Airbnb without owning the property:

1. Co-hosting

For property owners who don’t have the time to manage their listings, co-hosts can step in. Co-hosts help manage the property, communicate with guests, and ensure a smooth rental process. They share a percentage of the rental income, providing a profitable opportunity for those who understand the platform but don’t have property to list.

2. Property Management

Similar to co-hosting, property management on Airbnb can be a lucrative venture. This involves managing multiple properties for different owners, handling everything from listing creation to guest communication and on-site management.

3. Hosting Experiences

Airbnb isn't just about places to stay; it's also about unique experiences. If you have a skill, hobby, or expertise that you can share with others, you can host an experience. This could be anything from a city tour to a cooking class to a surfing lesson.

4. Photography

Quality photos are vital for an attractive Airbnb listing. If you have photography skills, you can offer your services to hosts looking to enhance their listings.

Earn Money with taking room pictures for AirBnB

5. Copywriting

The narrative of the listing is equally important. A compelling description can entice guests to book. Skilled writers can offer their services to craft engaging content for hosts.

6. Cleaning

Maintaining a clean and welcoming space is crucial for good reviews. If you offer cleaning services, you could cater specifically to Airbnb hosts who need to turn over their spaces quickly and efficiently.

Is Airbnb a Good Way to Make Money?

For many, Airbnb has been a game-changer in terms of financial freedom and income diversification. Success hinges on various factors, including the location of the property, the uniqueness and quality of the listing, the host’s dedication to guest experience, and the ability to market effectively.

Whether it's through renting out a space, providing services within the Airbnb framework, or both, Airbnb offers various avenues for individuals to generate income. The platform continues to evolve, creating more opportunities for enterprising individuals to make money in the sharing economy.

Setting Up Your Airbnb Listing

To truly succeed on Airbnb, it's not enough to simply list your space; you must curate an experience that stands out. This involves meticulous preparation and an understanding of what guests look for in a temporary home. Here are some essentials to ensure your listing attracts guests and secures bookings.

Home Listing on AirBnB

Preparing Your Property

Your first task is to prepare your property for guests. This goes beyond general tidiness and delves into the realm of guest comfort and expectation management. Your property should be well-maintained, with all appliances in working order and personal items stored away. Consider the little touches that could elevate a guest's stay - perhaps a coffee machine, a guidebook of local attractions, or a list of recommended restaurants nearby.

Staging and Cleanliness

Staging your property can make a huge difference. Create a space that's not only functional but also aesthetically pleasing. Ensure your property is spotless. A clean space is non-negotiable in the hospitality industry, and failure to meet this basic expectation can result in negative reviews, which can impact future earnings.


Amenities can set your listing apart. High-speed internet, a fully equipped kitchen, or even game consoles can make your property more attractive to potential guests. Highlight these amenities in your listing to attract more bookings.

Creating a Compelling Title and Description

Your title and description are often the first things potential guests will see. Make them engaging and informative. Use adjectives that accurately reflect your space and provide all necessary details in the description to manage expectations effectively.

Selecting Eye-catching Photos

Photos can make or break your listing. They are the visual representation of what you’re offering and can attract a guest to delve deeper into your listing. High-quality, well-lit photos that showcase the best aspects of your property are essential. Consider hiring a professional photographer to truly capture the essence of your space.

Setting Competitive Pricing Strategies

Pricing can be tricky. Set it too high, and you may deter potential guests; set it too low, and you could undervalue your offering. Research your local market to understand the competitive pricing landscape. Utilize tools provided by Airbnb, like smart pricing, which can adjust your rates based on demand and supply in your area.

Factors that affect AirBnB Income

Airbnb Estimated Earnings

Airbnb provides a mechanism for hosts to estimate their earnings based on a series of factors. These estimations are based on:

  • Location: Properties in high-demand or tourist-heavy locations typically earn more.
  • Property Type: Unique or luxury properties can command higher prices.
  • Occupancy Rate: The more frequently your property is booked, the higher your earnings.

Understanding the nuances that can affect your earnings is critical. For instance, a well-furnished apartment in the city center may earn more than a larger, more luxurious house in a remote area. Seasonality also plays a significant role, with certain times of the year yielding higher demand and allowing for increased rates.

Optimizing Your Property Listing

To optimize your property listing:

  • Regularly update your calendar to reflect availability.
  • Adjust pricing according to seasonality and local events.
  • Encourage reviews from guests, as a higher number of positive reviews can lead to more bookings.
  • Offer discounts for longer stays to attract guests who may contribute a steady income over a set period.

How Much Do You Actually Make with Airbnb?

The amount you can make with Airbnb varies greatly and depends on how well you manage your listing. According to Airbnb, hosts can calculate potential earnings through their online calculator by inputting details about their listing. The truth is that some hosts make a modest supplemental income, while others have turned it into their primary source of earnings.

AirBnB earnings state by state

Here's a snapshot of average Airbnb estimated earnings in the top-earning states:

1. Hawaii: Hosts can earn about $73,247, benefiting from constant tourist demand.

2. Tennessee: On average, hosts receive $67,510, with music and mountains drawing visitors.

3. Arizona: Hosts average $60,448, thanks to attractions like the Grand Canyon.

4. Colorado: With its outdoor appeal, average earnings are around $58,108.

5. California: The diverse state offers an average of $54,461.

6. Florida: Beaches and theme parks help hosts earn around $53,209.

7. South Carolina: Charming locales bring in an average of $49,641 for hosts.

8. Utah: National parks help hosts earn about $48,568 on average.

9. Oregon: Hosts have an average income of around $42,964 in Oregon.

10. Alabama: Hosts average $41,937 a year, capitalizing on coastal and cultural tourism.

Location is key, impacting earnings due to factors like seasonality, local attractions, and event tourism. Keep in mind that these are averages, and individual earnings will vary.

How Do I Start a Profitable Airbnb?

Utilize Social Media and Online Platforms for Promotion

Maximize your Airbnb's exposure by harnessing social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest to showcase your property. Create engaging content with high-quality images and stories, and use relevant hashtags to reach a broader audience. Partner with influencers and local businesses to gain visibility and direct potential guests to your Airbnb listing.

Encourage Reviews and Build Trust with Potential Guests

Reviews are crucial for building trust. A property with numerous positive reviews will attract more bookings. Here’s how to encourage and manage reviews:

  • Offer an outstanding guest experience to ensure positive feedback.
  • After their visit, personally ask guests to leave a review and provide them with a direct link to do so.
  • Respond to all reviews, good or bad, to show that you value guest feedback and are dedicated to improving their experience.

Implementing these strategies can significantly increase your Airbnb's profitability by enhancing its visibility and establishing trust with potential guests.

Leveraging Airbnb's Promotional Tools

To optimize your Airbnb listing and attract more guests, leverage smart pricing for competitive rates, offer last-minute and length-of-stay discounts, and create unique Airbnb experiences. Ensure your property stands out with professional photos, consider joining Airbnb Plus for higher visibility, and aim for Superhost status. Simplify bookings with the 'Instant Book' feature, use SEO strategies for your listing, and promote it through social media to reach a wider audience.

Airbnb Quarterly Earnings

Understanding the pattern of quarterly earnings is essential for financial planning as an Airbnb host. Earnings can fluctuate due to seasonality, local events, and travel trends.

Airbnb Quarterly Earnings

  • Q1 (January - March): Q1 often starts slow after the holiday season, with a gradual pickup towards spring break.
  • Q2 (April - June): Earnings typically increase as the weather improves and early vacationers start traveling.
  • Q3 (July - September): This is usually the peak season for Airbnb earnings, especially in tourist-heavy regions, due to summer vacations.
  • Q4 (October - December): This can be a mixed period; it starts slower but may spike around holidays like Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's Eve.

Financial Management Strategies with Examples:

  • Save During Peak Times: If earning $4,000 in peak months, set aside $800 (20%) for slower months.
  • List on Multiple Platforms: This diversification can result in an additional 10-15% in bookings, making up for potential platform-specific slumps.
  • Maintenance and Upgrades: Budgeting $500 during the off-season for property improvements can boost future earnings by 5–10%.
  • Dynamic Pricing: Implementing this might increase rates by $15–$30 per night during high-demand periods.
  • Off-Peak Promotions: Offering a 10% discount during slow periods can increase occupancy by 15%.
  • Monitor Local Events: This could result in a temporary price hike of 20–30% during the event duration.
  • Monthly Financial Reviews: Keeping meticulous records might reveal operational costs amounting to 30% of earnings, highlighting the importance of cost-saving measures.

Understanding seasonal trends and managing finances strategically is essential for sustained success as an Airbnb host.

Pricing Strategies for Maximum Earnings

Effective pricing strategies are key to maximizing your Airbnb income. Here are some of these strategies:

Mastering the Art of Pricing

Pricing impacts not just earnings but also the perception of your listing. Competitive pricing can make your property more attractive, while overpricing can lead to less interest and lower occupancy rates.

Implement Dynamic Pricing Based on Demand and Season

Dynamic pricing tools adjust your listing’s price in real time based on demand, seasonality, and local competition. Utilizing these can ensure your prices are always optimized for the current market.

Offering Special Discounts and Incentives

Special discounts can attract more guests. Consider:

  • Discounts for extended stays will encourage longer bookings.
  • Introductory prices for new listings will attract initial guests and build reviews. 
  • Last-minute discounts to fill unbooked dates.

Managing Extra Fees and Cleaning Charges Effectively

Extra fees should be transparent and in line with the value provided. To manage them effectively,

  • Set cleaning fees that cover your costs, but don’t discourage potential guests.
  • Consider including smaller fees in your nightly rate to simplify the pricing for guests.
  • Clearly communicate what these fees cover to avoid misunderstandings.

By utilizing Airbnb's promotional tools and adopting intelligent pricing strategies, you can increase your occupancy rate, enhance guest satisfaction, and ultimately maximize your earnings.

AirBnB Host Profile

Enhancing Your Airbnb Host Profile

An effective pricing strategy is crucial, but there's more to becoming a successful Airbnb host. A robust profile strengthens your reputation, encourages bookings, and can lead to better reviews.

Building a Strong Host Reputation

A positive host profile can significantly attract more guests. It serves as your first impression, showing potential guests that you're trustworthy, experienced, and attentive to their’ needs. High ratings and good reviews can elevate your listing in search results, making it more visible to prospective guests.

Promptly Responding to Inquiries and Reviews

Timely responses are not only a courtesy but also a ranking factor on platforms like Airbnb. Quick replies to inquiries show that you're responsive and accessible, which can be reassuring to guests. Additionally, addressing reviews, both positive and negative, demonstrates that you value feedback and are committed to providing a great experience.

Building a Professional and Welcoming Host Profile

Creating an appealing host profile involves professional, friendly language, high-quality images, and detailed descriptions of your space. Personal touches, like sharing why you love hosting or what makes your area special, can make your profile stand out. Ensure your house rules and amenities are clearly outlined to set accurate expectations.

Showcasing Your Hospitality with Past Guest Experiences

Highlighting previous guest reviews and experiences can be incredibly beneficial. Positive stories and testimonials from past guests serve as social proof, reassuring potential guests of the quality of your hospitality. Share memorable experiences or mention unique ways you've gone above and beyond for guests, as these details can make your listing more compelling.

In summary, your Airbnb host profile is a powerful tool in your hospitality arsenal. By cultivating a positive reputation, responding promptly, crafting a professional profile, and showcasing your hospitality through guest experiences, you can enhance your attractiveness to potential guests and encourage more bookings.

Making Money with AirBnB without owning a house

How to Make Money with Airbnb Without Owning Property

You don't need to own property to earn money on Airbnb. Co-hosting allows you to manage a listing and take care of guests for a percentage of the profits, while property management involves overseeing several properties, offering a more consistent income stream. 

These options come with their own set of challenges, such as establishing trust with property owners and handling operational logistics, but they also offer a lower barrier to entry into the Airbnb market. Successful partnerships are built on transparency, clear agreements, and a shared understanding of expectations.

Strategies to Maximize Earnings

To maximize earnings on Airbnb, it's essential to strike a balance between competitive pricing and offering an unmatched guest experience. Implement dynamic pricing to keep pace with market demand and stay competitive. 

Ensuring guests have a memorable stay can lead to positive reviews, which are instrumental in building trust with potential guests. Differentiate your listing with unique features or experiences to stand out in a crowded marketplace. Lastly, continual improvement based on guest feedback can help enhance the value of your listing, ensuring that guests keep coming back.

Legal and Tax Considerations

Hosting on Airbnb isn't just about providing a great guest experience; it also involves navigating legal and tax obligations. Local regulations concerning short-term rentals can vary significantly, from requiring special licensing to enforcing zoning laws. Tax implications are equally important to address, as income from Airbnb is generally taxable. 

Hosts need to understand their responsibilities for reporting rental income and may also be subject to additional local taxes like transient occupancy taxes. Because these legal and tax landscapes are complex and vary by location, it’s crucial for hosts to consult with legal and tax professionals to ensure full compliance and avoid any potential fines or legal issues.

Handling Guest Feedback and Reviews

Dealing with Guest Comments and Reviews

Feedback is a gold mine of information for Airbnb hosts. Positive reviews can boost your profile, while constructive criticism offers an opportunity to improve. Addressing each piece of feedback professionally demonstrates to future guests that you are committed to providing the best possible experience.

Responding Professionally to Both Positive and Negative Feedback

When responding to reviews, maintain a professional tone. Thank guests for positive feedback and for negative comments; express your regret that their experience was less than satisfactory; offer a solution; or explain any measures taken to rectify the situation. This open communication can often turn a negative experience into a positive one for future guests.

Implementing Feedback for Continuous Improvement

Use guest feedback as a stepping stone for continuous improvement. Small changes in response to guests' experiences can lead to enhanced satisfaction, fostering guest loyalty, and increasing the likelihood of referrals. Continuous improvement is not only about fixing issues but also about refining the overall guest experience to exceed expectations consistently.


Making money with Airbnb presents an appealing opportunity for individuals looking to diversify their income through the hospitality industry. The platform offers substantial earning potential, along with the flexibility to tailor hosting around your lifestyle. From creating an attractive and welcoming listing to navigating the complexities of legal and tax regulations, the key to success on Airbnb lies in attention to detail, responsiveness, and a commitment to continuous improvement based on guest feedback.

Whether you own property or not, avenues like co-hosting or property management are viable options to capitalize on the growing market of travelers seeking unique and personalized accommodations. Implementing dynamic pricing strategies, maintaining a strong host reputation, and leveraging guest reviews are critical strategies for maximizing earnings.

As you embark on this venture, remember to stay informed about local regulations, utilize feedback constructively, and always aim to provide an exceptional guest experience. With dedication and the right approach, hosting on Airbnb can not only be profitable but also a rewarding way to connect with people from around the world. Take the next steps with confidence, knowing that each part of the process is a learning opportunity and a chance to enhance your offering on this global platform.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Is It Really That Easy To Make Money With Airbnb?

Making money with Airbnb involves more than creating a listing; it's about offering competitive pricing, delivering outstanding guest experiences, staying ahead of market trends, adapting to regulatory changes, and investing time into marketing and property maintenance, all of which are vital in differentiating your offering in a crowded marketplace.

How Can I Make My Airbnb Listing Stand Out?

To make your Airbnb listing stand out, invest in professional photography that captures the essence of your space, furnish your property with unique amenities, ensure prompt and personal communication with guests, and continually enhance your listing based on guest feedback to provide a memorable stay that's reflected in your reviews.

What's The Secret To Setting The Perfect Airbnb Price?

The secret to setting the perfect Airbnb price lies in balancing competitive market research with dynamic pricing strategies to reflect fluctuating demand while considering the distinct characteristics and value-added services of your property. Price adjustments may be necessary to respond to seasonal trends and local events that affect travel patterns.

Should I Use Social Media To Promote My Airbnb Listing?

Promoting your Airbnb listing on social media can significantly amplify your visibility to a broader demographic, facilitate engagement through targeted marketing, create a compelling visual narrative of your space, and provide a platform for sharing guest testimonials and special promotions, all of which contribute to a stronger online presence and increased bookings.

What Apps Can Help Me Run My Airbnb Better?

To efficiently manage your Airbnb, consider using these essential apps: "Guesty" for property management, "Properly" for cleaning coordination, "Beyond Pricing" for dynamic pricing, "Autohost" for guest screening, and "QuickBooks" for financial management. These tools automate tasks, optimize pricing, and streamline operations.

Alex Quin

Entrepreneur. Podcaster. Go-Getter.

Alex Quin is a full-stack marketing expert and global keynote speaker. Founder and Chief Marketing Officer of UADV Marketing - a member of the Forbes Agency Council.

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