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Seven Things to Consider Before Choosing to Rent an Airbnb

by Carolyn Lee Mar 20, 2023

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Seven Things to Consider Before Choosing to Rent an Airbnb

The Airbnb platform provides an alternative to traditional hotels and allows people to rent out their homes or rooms to guests. Over the years, the platform has become increasingly popular, with over 6 million listings in more than 220 countries and regions globally. Living like a local, possibly lower fees, and flexibility are some of the benefits that make renting an Airbnb attractive. If you plan to book an Airbnb, we have some tips you can use before booking to ensure you find an Airbnb that is right for you.

Always verify the check-in process.

Check-in policies are sometimes different for properties. Some hosts might prefer an in-person key exchange and show you around the property. Other check-in procedures can include a door person, neighbour or co-host meeting you, collecting the key from a designated area (inside a flowerpot, under the mat, etc.), or getting the keys from a numbered lockbox. You must organise with the host the most convenient method to access the keys, so you are not stranded when you get there or forced to wait an extended time before you can get inside the property.

Check the reviews.

The reviews on an Airbnb property can provide relevant insight into how the host operates and the layout of the physical space. Although each property is assigned a star rating, read through the written comments, and check for consistency. Some properties might get a bad review from a dissatisfied client, but if there are several complaints about similar issues, you’ll need to decide if it is right for you. You can also tell if the host is responsive in the comment section.

Look at images of the property.

Photos are crucial when booking an Airbnb because they have details that can help you to visualise the space. You can tell if the property is modern, clean, and has the facilities needed. The absence of images does not necessarily indicate that the property is unkept; the host may not be computer savvy or have professional photos. If you wish to rent, contact the host and ask for images.

Do a location and surrounding areas search.

Although most Airbnb hosts will secure the property, some guests like to visit local restaurants, bars, and attractions. If you wish to explore the local scene, check the location and surrounding areas to get an idea of nearby places. Look at the news for protests, crime upsurges, poor weather conditions, or incidents that could compromise your safety en route to the location or while you are there. Also, look at the proximity to the nearest hospital, police station, or transportation centre to have an idea of where things are in case of an emergency.

Ask about the WiFi service.

Most people might rent an Airbnb for vacation, so access to WiFi might not be crucial. Some guests might wish to check emails, stream movies, or join business meetings. It is wise to check if the host has uploaded the WiFi speed to the app and ask about it before booking.

Get details about camera placements on the property.

An Airbnb is an investment for many people, so it’s not surprising to see cameras on the property. Many hosts use doorbell cameras and devices to ensure guests are safely checked-in and the number of guests at the premises. However, some hosts might have interior cameras or recording devices in private spaces, which is against Airbnb policies and regulations and is illegal in some countries. Having cameras is a safety measure, but Airbnb policies indicate that the main cameras must be visible and disclosed.

Pay attention to the check-out and cancellation information.

Life can be unpredictable, so it helps to prepare for the unexpected if it might cost money. Always check if you can cancel your reservation and the amount that may be refundable, the penalty, or the fee. Since the Airbnb owners set their policy on refunds, including refunds, and cancellations, it is crucial to know what to expect. It can be tedious to clean an Airbnb before leaving, so pay attention to cleaning fees and clean-up instructions (where to put used items).

We hope you’ll consider these tips before booking your next Airbnb. If you enjoyed this article and would like to read more content with everyday living tips, head to Find Yello and click on “Articles”.

Sources: Apartment Therapy, CNET, Nerd Wallet, and Airbnb.