Short Term Rental Help
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Short Term Rental Tips & Ideas

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What is a Short Term Rental?

Recently short term rentals (STRs) have been in the news a lot and you might have heard that people like you and me are making extra cash with this new way to make money. But what is a short term rental?

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Can I make Money From My Vacation Rental Home?

Let's be honest. The majority of people who rent their homes to short term guests are not doing it just because they like to meet people from all over the world, although that is a very neat aspect that comes with the territory. We do it to make money...

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white beach house.

Short History of Short Term Rentals

Prior to the end of the last century most people would not have thought of renting their personal home to complete strangers, but many people have been doing it for decades...

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Research Before Starting Your Vacation Rental

Many people start their vacation rental without much thought or any research. Some are successful while others fail. Although research may not be a make or break for your rental, it can definitely help you become more profitable much quicker.

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Is Your STR Legal?

The days our Founding Fathers envisioned of people being able to start businesses and create their own version of the American Dream without government intervention and intrusion are gone. Thus, you must determine if you can legally operate a vacation rental in your home prior to starting your business.

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What is My Hook?

One of the most popular home types on Airbnb are tree houses. Find a good tree house on this listing website and it will probably be booked at a nice price and maybe even have a waiting list. Obviously, specific types of homes, like tree houses, castles or hobbit homes can be desirable to travelers and command higher prices and more rentals each year.

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Running a Business? Act Like It!

It does not matter whether you are renting a bedroom or an entire home. Your short term rental is still a business even if you only rent a few days each year. For maximum benefit you need to ACT like you are running a business. Operating as a business can protect you legally and provide numerous tax benefits.

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Stocking Your Rental Home

I have developed a list of items that could be included in a short term rental focusing on items the guests will need. I have not included any large appliances under the assumption that those items will already be present. Do you need everything on this list? Probably not, but I've tried to make it as comprehensive as possible to give you many ideas.

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Setting Your Nightly Rate

One of the most important decisions you will make concerning your vacation home rental is determining what price you will charge. Charge too much and you reduce the number of times your home is booked, charge too little and you leave money on the table. Price may also affect the quality of your renters too.

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What is Your Why?

Why do you want to start a short term rental business? There are no bad reasons here, but your "why" will determine how you operate your business. Running a vacation home properly takes time and effort. Some people desire to simply make a few extra dollars on the side. Some people desire a full-time business for the income. Your "why" will determine how much effort and time you will need to devote to your business and, to an extent, how much your start-up costs will be.

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What are Some Start-up Costs?

Just like any new business there will be start-up costs when you begin your short term rental business. One of the great aspects of this business is that a person could spend less than $100 and begin making money!

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Additional Costs to Consider

You will have additional and recurring expenses while operating your vacation rental that must be deducted from your income to determine your net profit. These expenses would be things like utilities, maintenance, amenities and cleaning.

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Listing Photo Tips

After you have furnished the house and everything is ready to go it's time to take pictures in preparation for posting your listing on rental websites.

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Which Vacation Home Website Should I List On?

Each listing website is a little different and reaches a slightly different audience of travelers. When you decide to list your home you will need to make a decision of which websites such as Airbnb, FlipKey or HomeAway you will list with.

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trip hazards

Lower Your Short Term Rental's Liability

Accidents happen, but they don't always have to happen. When we live in our homes we become familiar with its peculiarities. However, guests are experiencing the property for the first time so the possibility of an accident occurring is much higher.

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Short Term Rentals and Income Taxes

Like the saying goes, there's nothing more sure than death and taxes. Almost any income you earn within the United States is taxable, thus rental income, whether it be renting a room in your home or an entire house, is taxable.

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Cleaning Your Short Term Rental

A home that is not clean is a death nail to your business. Here's a cleaning list to help you get started.

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