Whether you’re renting your home for just a few weekends of the year using Airbnb, or it’s a year-round business – all Airbnb hosts and managers need to have Airbnb house rules. The house rules for your property are just as important as your Airbnb listing. People just need a bit of information and direction about your home and what you allow.
If you’ve never written Airbnb rules, you may be a bit lost on where to begin. We’ve created this step-by-step guide to help you out!
House rules give Airbnb hosts the opportunity to professionally and clearly state what the guests can or cannot do, what is expected of them, and what the possible penalties are if the rules are broken.
Before you sit down to write your Airbnb house rules, think of the type of potential guests that your home might attract and their possible demands. Will your guests tend to be grandparents, families with young children, professionals, or the under 25 party-type crowd? Be sure to write the house rules based on the type of possible guests that may rent your property.
The onus is on the rental owner to write the house rules. You may prefer them to be serious rather than fun or formal. Regardless of the style, there are certain house rules that all hosts should address.
💡 Tip 1. Keep the rules simple and don’t over complicate them.
💡 Tip 2. Don’t leave anything in the rules left open for interpretation. Be as explicit as possible.
💡 Tip 3. Look through your Airbnb house rules from time to time. It might happen that over time you want to modify your list based on your hosting experience.
Set the tone in a few words explaining why you have the house rules and why guests should follow them. Mention that failure to adhere to the rules may result in deductions from the security deposit (or other penalties).
Let the potential guests know about the parking rules before sending the copy of the Airbnb house rules.
Questions to consider about parking are:
If there are any areas in your house that are off-limits to your guests, it is a good idea to outline them in your house rules.
No matter if you are a smoker yourself or not, you should seriously think about banning smoking at your rental. Not all guests will put cigarette butts in a trash bin which means that you can end up finding them lying around your property.
Besides, not all guests will be able to put up with the cigarette odor of your rental. It will be extremely difficult to remove it, once you decide to turn your rental into a non-smoking place.
If you don’t want your house to turn into a complete mess after a raging party, make sure to add the “no parties” rule to your house rules list. To prevent parties at your rental, be very specific about the number of guests/visitors.
Avoid words such as “a few” and “a couple”, otherwise some guests can invite 15 visitors, arguing that it is just “a small gathering”.
The “no parties” rule will protect your house from damages and your wallet from having to pay for an “early renovation”. In addition, your rental will be a safer place without parties, as sometimes things might get out of control after a dozen cocktails.
Think about if you’ll allow any extra visitors or if only registered guests will be allowed. If you are fine with your guests bringing anyone along, it is still a good idea to limit the number of visitors. This will help you to protect your rental from additional wear and tear and extra usage of the provided supplies.
Make sure to set fees for extra overnight visitors and ask your guests to approve them in advance.
Highlight the rules against excessive noise late at night and/or disrupting the neighbors. Set hours when your guests need to keep noise to a minimum as well as penalties they may face if they break your rules.
Let your guests know whether you allow them to use your washer and dryer. Is there a limit on how much laundry they can do?
Though a washer and dryer is one of the most searched for amenities and can bring you more bookings, Airbnb hosts often report problems connected with guests doing laundry at their short-term rental. These include forgotten clothing items, sand from the beach or a dryer clogged with lint.
Decide on whether your guests may eat in all the rooms of your property. If you do have designated eating areas, let them know in your house rules.
In fact, by restricting areas where your guests can enjoy their food you can save hours at the laundry. If guests are allowed to eat everywhere they want, stains on your sofa or even bed covers are unavoidable. Therefore, consider which areas of your house guests may use for their meals.
If your property has a barbeque that guests can use, be sure to leave instructions on how to set it up, how to use it, as well as how to properly clean it.
Include details on how to dispose of the garbage and where exactly your guests need to throw it out.
This will help ensure that your property is kept well with proper cleaning, and you’re not left with a huge pile of trash on checkout day.
If your property has a hot tub/swimming pool, ensure to lay out the safety rules and restrictions regarding the time of day that they can access the pool as well as any prohibited items in the pool area.
Balconies and decks are a great space to congregate and take in the views of the city. However, they may pose a hazard to younger children. Ensure to include safety rules regarding the use of these spaces.
Let guests know the rules and/or restrictions regarding pets and pet sizes.
It is up to you to decide whether or not you allow pets at your vacation rental. As more people are traveling now with their furry friends, it makes sense to consider making your rental pet-friendly. By applying a few tweaks to your property, you can set it up for pets and charge a higher rate.
However, opening your property to travelers with pets has some cons to ponder:
Remind guests that their belongings will be kept safe and secure if they remember to close and lock all the doors and windows before leaving the property. This would also be a good opportunity to remind guests to turn off the lights and air conditioner before leaving the premises.
Let guests know what they should do if they break or damage something at your property. For cases when the cost of the damage exceeds the security deposit, make sure to mention that the costs will be billed to guests and reported to Airbnb.
Mention what guests should do before they checkout. Include rules on cleaning, garbage disposal, and key handover.
Provide emergency contact numbers in case anything goes wrong during your guests’ stay at your property.
Clearly state what consequences your guests might face in case they fail to adhere to your rules (penalties, eviction, etc.).
Here is a brief list of rules that Airbnb hosts might want to include in their welcome book or Airbnb listing.
Having the right Airbnb House Rules that match your home and preferences will help avoid accidents and reduce guest damage to your property. Remember to keep your house rules simple yet explicit. When your guests understand your rules, it should give you more peace of mind and feel more in control.