If you have extra room in your home or travel often, the thought of renting out your space on Airbnb may have crossed your mind.
Airbnb is an online marketplace that connects people who want to rent out their homes with people who are looking for a place to stay when they travel.
Travelers often look to Airbnb to provide a more authentic and affordable lodging experience compared to a hotel stay.
If you have a rental house, guest house, basement, or spare bedroom that hardly gets used, renting it on Airbnb could be an easy way to make money.
If you’re looking to earn some semi-passive income, learning how to make money with Airbnb is a great option.
Even if you don’t have a space to rent, there are quite a few ways to make money on this platform so be sure to keep reading.
7 Best Ways to Make Money with Airbnb
So how do you actually make money with Airbnb? One of the most common ways is by hosting but over time this platform has evolved to offer even more opportunities.
Here’s a summary of all the different ways to make money with Airbnb.
1. Airbnb Rental Arbitrage
Airbnb rental arbitrage is a strategy that involves acquiring a property with the sole purpose to rent it out on Airbnb.
In order to be successful with Airbnb arbitrage, you’ll need to earn more with your rental than your rent or mortgage payment is each month.
This could be an appealing way to make money on the platform if you’re interested in getting a quick return on a real estate investment.
People always need short-term accommodations so if you don’t want to deal with a long-term tenant, Airbnb arbitrage provides an alternative.
To get started, you’ll want to do some thorough research on the areas you’re looking to host in and see if there’s enough demand for bookings.
Do people travel to certain cities often for work or leisure? Will the property be in a walk-able area near tourist attractions? Do you anticipate a slow season due to weather or other factors?
Also, determine how much you can charge for your rental and make sure it’s higher than your rent and business-related expenses.
Do some research and see what existing Airbnb rental prices are and how those properties compare to the one you’re considering.
Also, be sure to research local and state laws and regulations for short-term property rentals.
Some cities prohibit vacation rentals while others place annual limits on how many nights you can rent your property out.
2. Make Money by Hosting
Of course, one of the most popular ways to make money with Airbnb is to host your home.
This is ideal for anyone who has a spare bedroom, basement, or another space and doesn’t mind taking in guests.
Airbnb charges a service fee of around 3% for hosts who rent out a private home or property.
After that, you typically get to keep the remainder of the payout minus taxes and experiences.
You can list your space for free on Airbnb and make accommodations for guests whether it’s WiFi and kitchen access, a private bathroom, toiletries or even light breakfast foods.
As a host, you can choose your own schedule, nightly prices, and requirements for guests.
If you don’t want to rent your home out for two weeks, you can cross off those dates on your calendar so guests won’t be able to book them.
You can also set up your listing to automatically approve guests or require you to manually approve them before booking a stay.
Hosting is a flexible way to earn money and you can be as involved or hands-off as you like.
Some hosts provide contact-less check-in options so guests can use a lockbox to enter the space and check out on their own.
You can also consider hiring a cleaner to come in after each guest leaves to sanitize and clean the space for the next guest.
Positive reviews are one of the most important factors to becoming a successful Airbnb host.
When you’re first getting started, consider offering a discount or special to motivate new guests to book your space.
Without reviews, it may be difficult to get a guest but be sure to mention that your listing is new in the description.
Create a pleasant experience for each person who visits your home and provide excellent customer service.
Then invite each guest to rate your property and leave a review. Respond to any feedback and continue to make your listing better over time.
Related: 14 Simple Ways to Make $500 Fast
3. Airbnb Experiences
If you’re wondering how to make money with Airbnb when you don’t have a home or spare room to rent out, hosting an experience is the way to go.
Airbnb Experiences is a feature that allows people to lead activities in their area and charge a fee.
When people travel, they often look for fun and exciting things to do. You know your area better than anyone so you may want to consider leading a tour or another experience.
The sky is really the limit when it comes to offering an Airbnb experience. If you have a farm or horse ranch, you can take people on tours or teach horseback riding lessons.
Or, perhaps you can host an experience at your local community garden or show people who to paint or decorate something for their home. Lead a hike, raise money for a charity, share the story behind famous landmarks.
You can also host an online experience by teaching a class or sharing an idea.
For example, if you enjoy cooking and have some really good vegan recipes or dessert ideas, you can host a digital cooking instruction class for couples or groups of friends.
Brainstorm a few good experience ideas then send a request to Airbnb and they will take around 2 to 3 weeks to decide if they want to approve it.
Airbnb charges a service fee of around 20% for hosts who offer experiences so be sure to keep that in mind when pricing your activity.
4. Referring Renters
Making money with Airbnb doesn’t have to be so complicated. Airbnb has a referral program where you can get paid to refer other guests and hosts.
Just sign up for an account and you’ll be able to get your own unique referral link.
This is an easy way to make money with the platform because you may know someone who is interested in hosting their home or experience.
Or, you may have a friend or family member who is looking to use Airbnb for their next trip. If you have a blog or online presence, you can use your referral link to promote Airbnb to your audience.
Inviting friends to sign up for Airbnb is easy because they will earn around $50 toward a stay and $15 toward an Airbnb Experience of $50 or more.
You’ll earn a credit of $20 to $30 for each person who signs up and books a stay. You can earn up to $5,000 total in travel credit but the credit will expire 1 year from the date they were issued.
When you refer a new host, you can earn $100 or more once they get their first guest.
5. Cleaning Rentals for Other Hosts
Learn how to make money with Airbnb without owning a property by offering cleaning services.
Busy Airbnb hosts may need to hire other people to come in and clean their properties to turn the space around quickly before the next guest arrives.
You could consider starting your own cleaning business or just picking up a few extra gigs on the side.
Many hosts include a cleaning fee with their listing so they may very well have a budget to hire out cleaning services.
Create your own service packages or monthly subscriptions to create some steady, ongoing income.
6. Taking Listing Photos for Other Hosts
Are you a photographer or someone who takes awesome photos that always receive a ton of compliments?
Your photo-taking skills could be useful for Airbnb hosts who need professional images of their rentals.
Imagery is everything when creating an Airbnb listing and bad photos could be the reason why guests don’t book a space.
It’s crucial that hosts include lots of well-lit and detailed photos to show the space at different angles and include all the amenities and features.
Reach out to Airbnb hosts in your area and ask them if you can update the images on their listing. Or, create your own website to promote your photography business that can be marketed to new hosts.
Airbnb also offers their own professional photography services for hosts and they hire contractors to take the photos.
You must meet certain camera requirements and have an online portfolio to showcase your work.
Photographers will travel no more than 30 miles from their home to take pictures for listings. Click here to learn more and apply.
7. Become an Airbnb Associate
A new fun way to make money with Airbnb is by becoming an associate. If you have a blog or online audience, you can get paid to promote Airbnb stays and content from their site.
All content must comply with Airbnb’s Community Standards and as with all promotions you have to be transparent with your audience about the relationship with Airbnb.
Still, this can be a great way to diversify your income if you’ve already started building your online presence with a blog or social media.
Airbnb Associates get paid to share links, widgets, landing pages and more that help their audience learn more about how to save money and travel with the platform.
As an associate, you’ll be paid 30% of the Airbnb guest fee each time someone books a stay through your content.
You’ll also be paid 25% of the Airbnb host fee every time someone books an experience (online or in person).
Payouts typically occur between the 10th and 20th of the month after a completed reservation. Learn more and sign up to become an Airbnb Associate here.
You Don’t Have be a Host to Make Money with Airbnb
As you can see, there’s not just a one-size fit-all answer when you’re trying to find out how to make money with Airbnb.
If you have extra space in your home and don’t mind taking in travelers, you could easily earn a few hundred extra dollars or a thousands per month.
This could help you pay your mortgage or fund other areas of your lifestyle.
Airbnb arbitrage can be a great option for the right person who is interested in managing a short-term rental.
Overall, hosting will allow you to earn the most money, but there are other opportunities to consider as well if you don’t want to host.
Whether you want to try your hand at clearing and managing rentals, taking photos or referring others to join, there are plenty of ways to score a nice payday with Airbnb.
But…Is Airbnb Profitable for Hosts?
Yes, it is. On average, Airbnb hosts make between $700 to $900 per month. But, there are various factors to consider when calculating this income.
We have to put into account the host’s location, the quality of home or room being rented and any other related services that are being offered. So, is Airbnb profitable for hosts? Yes, it definitely is profitable.
Virginia Nakitari is a full-time blogger and a work from home expert. Join Virginia and 200,000 monthly readers on EarnSmartOnlineClass to learn how to make money online, even as a beginner. Before starting this blog, Virginia worked as a freelancer, specializing in general transcription and virtual assistance. Her wide clientele comprised of business coaches, podcasters, bloggers, and other online entrepreneurs. It’s through these interactions that Virginia developed a knack for writing and showing people how to work from home, make money online and attain financial freedom.