When it comes to Airbnb rentals, who is at more of a safety risk: the host or the guest?
Both sides have been on the receiving end of horror stories. Guests haven’t been shy about airing their grievances online, everything from staying with convicted felons or sex offenders to finding hidden bedroom cameras.
But Airbnb hosts have their fair share of safety issues to consider, too. And, given the monetary investment at stake, it’s in every host’s best interest to follow these Airbnb safety best practices protect your venture:
Airbnb Safety Tips for Hosts
Being an Airbnb host comes with responsibility, both to your guests and to yourself. Make sure these Airbnb safety tips are in place before your next guest arrives:
Handle All Your Business Through Airbnb
Conducting Airbnb business outside of the Airbnb platform can seem like an easy way to boost your profits, but the safety implications could leave you vulnerable.
It’s in your best interest to handle all communications and transactions through the platform. Airbnb helps you to get to know your guests, read their profiles or reviews, and get references.
Remember, you don’t have to accept every reservation! If something doesn’t feel right, it could be in your financial best interest to decline.
Clearly Define Your House Rules, House Manual, and Safety Information
Airbnb allows hosts to create a house manual and house rules that guests will be required to uphold. The more specific, the better able you can hold your guests accountable to your expectations. These may include rules about smoking, wi-fi, quiet hours, or wearing shoes in the house, or other activities you see fit.
Also, your safety card should contain information on how to seek help for emergencies, where fire extinguishers are located, and emergency exit routes.
Ensure You’re Insured
Airbnb’s Host Insurance Protection covers single incidents of bodily injury or property damage up to $1,000,000. However, this coverage may not be enough, nor does it cover all potential circumstances where an insurance claim may be justified.
Talk to your insurance provider to add an extra layer of protection by beefing up your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance.
Require a Security Deposit
It’s in your best interest to require a security deposit in the event of minor damage that doesn’t warrant an insurance claim. For example, a glass of spilt wine that ruined your couch fabric could result in the guest’s loss of a security deposit.
Install a Security System
Security systems can add an extra layer of safety for both you and your guests. For hosts, a security system helps you protect your home by knowing what’s going on when you’re not there.
Investing in a system that allows for automation lets you keep tabs on your property from anywhere, as well as control the thermostat, lock the doors, or turn off your lights.
Add Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Adding smoke and CO detectors to your Airbnb rental can give your guests peace of mind while also protecting your investment.
If you don’t already have working smoke detectors and CO monitors in your home, it doesn’t cost much to buy and install them. You should add this feature to your listing to instil trust in your listing and let guests know you take their safety seriously. Also, make sure you test them often to ensure they remain in good working order.
Invest in a VPN Router
This commonly overlooked feature of an Airbnb rental can be one of the most dangerous. Using an unsecured router in your rental could leave you and your guests vulnerable to potential hackers and cybercriminals.
You can protect yourself and your guests with a VPN router that doesn’t track or trace online activity. Everything your guests do online remains private, which means nothing can be traced back to your home Wi-fi. This eliminates the chance of you being held liable for their actions online.
Rent With Confidence
Don’t let the horror stories of previous Airbnb hosts prevent you from pursuing a lucrative venture. Rather, learn from their mistakes and use our Airbnb safety tips to provide a safe, smart, enjoyable experience for all.
For more inspiration on how to improve your Airbnb business, head back to the HostyApp blog.