If you don’t mind strangers living in your home and touching your stuff, you can make some pretty serious money renting out your condo on a short-term basis. The two most common ways of doing this are by going through VRBO or Airbnb. In fact, nearly three million people now have their property listed for this purpose, and the average Airbnb host makes over $7,000 a year. There are, however, some things you need to get right and others you need to beware of. So we offer these 5 tips for making bank using your condo as a short-term rental in Los Angeles.
1. Consider the Legalities
First, if you want to use your condo as a short-term rental in Los Angeles, you need to consider all the legal implications and ramifications. Many cities are now pushing back against these rental platforms and are putting laws in place to make the practice more difficult. In addition, your HOA may have clauses on the books that restrict or prevent this short-term rental practice. Just check everything out first so that you don’t wind up facing a lawsuit.
2. Make the Listing Count
Second, if you really do want to make bank using your condo as a short-term rental in Los Angeles, you have to get potential renters interested. And that means having a top-notch listing to grab attention and generate interest.
A great listing begins with plenty of listing photos of professional quality to make it stand out from other listings. Use the most enticing, most appealing photo for the main listing image. Next, you will need a carefully crafted description to get people to choose your condo over all the other similar ones available for short-term rental.
3. Price It Right
To successfully use your condo as a short-term rental in Los Angeles, you have to get the price right – neither too high nor too low. Price the rental too high, and you’ll scare renters off immediately. Price it too low, and they’ll wonder what’s wrong with it or what the catch is.
Many of the short-term rental platforms have pricing tools that allow to plug in the pertinent data and then generate a reasonable rental price for you. Whatever method you use, experts in this area generally recommend the following:
- Compare your condo with similar condos for rent in your immediate area to see what others are charging – and getting.
- Early on in the short-term rental process (until you get established with positive reviews), you might want to charge slightly less than your competition.
- Time your renting and listing to coincide with big local events that draw people in so that you can price just a little higher when short-term rental space is at a premium.
4. Be Prepared to Spend a Little
The old adage that you have to spend money to make money holds true here as well. Making bank using your condo as a short-term rental in Los Angeles will require you to keep it thoroughly cleaned and in tip-top, often with professional assistance. And if you use Airbnb or VRBO, you’ll have to pay their service fee. But being willing to make the necessary investment will likely mean more rental income.
5. Vet the Guests
And, finally, using your condo as a short-term rental, a profitable one, means being picky about whom you rent to. So vet your guests and get a security deposit. Talk to potential tenants directly and establish a dialogue to get a feel for them – to get a sense of whether they will respect and take care of your property. Otherwise, you’ll wind up spending a bundle on repair bills that will eat into your profit.
You can indeed make bank using your condo as a short-term rental in Los Angeles. It just takes a little research, preparation, and cautiousness. Renting a condo is different from renting a house, so if you’re still not sure how to proceed, contact an experienced local agent.