You’re wrong. There is a purpose to this article. Other than, that is, an excuse to post a photograph of a rather hunky chap. That’s a pretty good reason in itself of course, but the real reason behind this article is to encourage local repair people, handymen/women and so on to make themselves invaluable to Airbnb hosts – thus increasing their own revenue. Good, right?
You see, in just the same way that Airbnb rentals should be prepared by an STR expert and not a run-of-the-mill cleaner, so maintenance and repair work on rentals should be performed by someone who is a specialist in the field and who understands the issues that the guests and the hosts face.
Believe me, when a host finds such a person, that person becomes invaluable.
It goes without saying that our repair person should have a variety of skills. But what other tricks of the trade can make them truly indispensable? Here are some items that are important to your local Airbnb hosts.
A guest reports a problem to a host. It’s an issue that the host can’t fix him- or herself. Now the repair person comes in handy. He or she is, of course, reliable at responding to texts, phone calls or messages. He or she is, in fact, scrupulous about returning texts or calls.
Now it doesn’t matter if he or she can’t drop everything and rush round to effect the repair. That would mean that they have time on their hands and aren’t in demand. No good. But they should be able to give the host an accurate time regarding when they will be able to be there.
MAKING AN APPOINTMENT
When a host has Airbnb guests, he or she cannot legally enter the rented areas without the guest’s express permission. The only exception to this rule is if there’s a genuine emergency. If a repair person needs to go into the rental then the guests can choose whether they want to be there at the time. The rental is ‘their’ property during the time they are paying for it.
Therefore the appointment must be made with the guest’s agreement. The host will give the guest the option – do they want to be there when the repair person comes? Or are they okay with the host letting him/her in? Guests who are of a more suspicious nature (or ‘security-conscious’, let’s say) will prefer to be there.
I know this should go without saying (but I’m saying it anyway). The repair person must be someone who is presentable. I don’t want you to think that I’m saying that I (or we) judge people by their appearance but the person in question is going into the guest’s ‘home’. Okay, their ‘home’ for a few days or a week, but still the ‘home’ they are paying for.
People who are rude, or smelly, or offensive in some other way might be brilliant at what they do, But with Airbnb, appearances matter. Your repair person is an ambassador for you, the host, and therefore should take this situation seriously.
The repair person should be as clean and tidy in the rental as he or she possibly can be. Just a few examples of essential items in his/her arsenal are:
- Shoe covers to protect the floor
- Dropcloths to cover furniture, bedding, flooring etc.
- A shop vac
- Plenty of cleaning equipment & disposable cleaning cloths
He or she has to remember that the guests will be evaluated by the hosts after the stay and therefore there’s a strong responsibility to ensure that they leave the place in spotless condition. No-one wants to clean up someone else’s mess.
KEEP A HOME MANUAL/DOSSIER
Also refered to as a ‘home logbook’, this is something that the repair/handy person should keep accurate and up to date so that they can save time for themselves, and money for their clients, for future work.
It’s important for the repair/handyperson to realise that working on Airbnb properties is not at all the same as working in regular homes or even other rental properties, even STRs. Airbnb has a system which is quite unlike similar sites and booking agents.
The host will help provide education about these matters but the important issues are outlined above. Excellent timekeeping, being personable and having fabulous cleanliness standards are very high on the list.
Once a contractor has worked for an Airbnb host, and fully understands the special challenges that are present in the Airbnb environment, then he/she has a huge sales advantage over other similar businesses in the locality. Becoming an Airbnb specialist means, in many areas, being hugely in demand.