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  • Wed, May 24, 2023 3:30 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The cancellation policy you select can have a big impact on a host’s ability to earn income since cancellations result in lost revenue and the potential for unfilled bookings.

    In this article, we’ll review the policies offered by Airbnb. Obviously, you will want to read the specifics carefully before choosing the right option for your listing.

    Airbnb Cancellation Policies

    • Flexible: This policy allows guests to cancel up to 24 hours before check-in to receive a full refund. If they cancel after that, you’ll be paid for each night they stay plus one night.
    • Moderate: This policy allows guests to cancel up to 5 days before check-in for a full refund. If they cancel after that, you’ll be paid for each night they stay, plus 1 additional night, and 50% for all unspent nights.
    • Firm: To receive a full refund, guests must cancel at least 30 days before check-in. If they cancel between 7 and 30 days before check-in, you’ll be paid 50% for all nights reserved. If they cancel less than 7 days before check-in, you’ll be paid 100% for all nights reserved. Guests can also receive a full refund if they cancel within 48 hours of booking, if the cancellation occurs at least 14 days before check-in.
    • Strict: To receive a full refund, guests must cancel within 48 hours of booking, and the cancellation must occur at least 14 days before check-in. If a guest cancels between 7 and 14 days before check-in, you’ll be paid 50% for all nights reserved. If they cancel after that, you’ll be paid 100% for all nights.
    • Non-Refundable: Under this scheme, hosts must offer at least a 10% discount off of the base price. At checkout, guests select the standard rate subject to the chosen cancellation policy or the discounted, non-refundable rate. If a guest cancels after selecting the non-refundable rate, the host keeps the entire payout for all nights reserved but not the cleaning fee. Generally this applies to reservations with a checkout date taking place within the next 60 days as long as the reservation is not made with a pre-approval or special offer. 

    There are also specific, stricter policies for long-term rentals lasting more than 30 days which are offered to hosts by invitation only.

    It is important to note that under each of the cancellation policies above, the Airbnb service fee is non-refundable. 

    A Blessing in Disguise
    man with a laptop gesturing "yes!"Consider also, how easy it is to fill gaps in your calendar. If you offer a smaller, more urban property, a last-minute cancellation can turn into a blessing in disguise. Suppose a guest cancels at the last minute. In that case, it’s an opportunity for you to raise the rate for those available nights by 20-30% since you will be one of the few remaining hosts with availability, especially during the high season for your area.

    Which Approach Should I Take?
    It’s important to choose a cancellation policy that balances the need to protect your revenue with a desire to attract bookings. A more lenient policy may be attractive but could result in more cancellations and lost revenue. A stricter policy could deter some bookings but can help protect revenue in case of cancellations. 

    You will want to read and understand the specifics carefully before choosing the right option for your listing and review the policies periodically since they are constantly being updated. Whatever policy you choose, make sure it’s clear on the booking platform so guests understand the cancellation constraints and be prepared to address requests from guests with extenuating circumstances. 

    Host2Host can’t be responsible for policy changes that may happen or any errors or omissions that might have occurred in the creation of this article. As one of my favorite marketing gurus says, “Y'all are grown folks and need to make your own decisions.
  • Thu, April 27, 2023 8:08 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The answer to this potentially controversial question is undoubtedly, Yes. And probably even better than you can. To test this theory, I asked ChatGPT to create a compelling listing description for a hypothetical short-term rental property using the following, mediocre prompt:

    Are you able to write a compelling listing description for an Airbnb property with two bedrooms and one bathroom? It is a whole house with a front porch facing a beautiful lake. Features include a hot tub, lakeview, large TV, family gameroom, and chef's kitchen.


    This is what it delivered, in just a few seconds:

    AI Generated Lakeside HouseWelcome to your serene lakeside escape, a stunning two-bedroom, one-bathroom retreat designed for relaxation and entertainment! This enchanting, privately-accessed whole house boasts an array of luxurious amenities to elevate your stay, nestled amidst breathtaking lake views that promise to captivate you from the moment you arrive.

    As you step through the front door, let your gaze be drawn to the mesmerizing view of the lake from the cozy front porch. Unwind with your morning coffee or evening wine as you revel in the tranquility of the surrounding nature.

    Inside, the spacious and inviting family game room is the perfect spot for making cherished memories with your loved ones. Enjoy endless entertainment options with our large TV, a diverse board game collection, and comfortable seating for everyone to gather and relax.

    The open-concept, chef's kitchen is a true culinary delight, fully equipped with state-of-the-art appliances and a generous selection of cookware. Unleash your inner gourmet and create delectable meals that can be savored around the elegant dining table while basking in the panoramic lake view.

    Both bedrooms are meticulously designed to provide the utmost comfort, featuring plush beds and premium linens that guarantee a restful night's sleep. The stylishly appointed bathroom offers a pristine environment for freshening up after a day of lakeside adventures.

    outdoor bbq near lakeYour stay wouldn't be complete without indulging in the private hot tub, where you can soak your cares away under a canopy of stars. The outdoor area also features a BBQ grill and patio furniture, making it the perfect spot for alfresco dining and soaking up the serene ambiance.

    Whether you're looking for a romantic getaway or a fun-filled family vacation, our enchanting lakeside haven offers the perfect blend of comfort, entertainment, and natural beauty. Book your unforgettable stay now, and let the magic of the lake whisk you away!


    If you’re not already using a program like ChatGPT to help with your marketing, what are you waiting for? Get started and enhance your listing description today!

  • Thu, April 27, 2023 8:06 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Anthony RalloHost2Host business affiliates and interested hosts gathered last week at the 3rd Annual Vendor Showcase to connect with one another, share information about their services, and learn more about how we can help each other be successful. 

    Board Member, Anthony Rallo, kept the conversation flowing and gave each speaker plenty of time to talk about their offerings. We were excited to hear from several new business affiliates as well as some who have supported us from the very beginning. 

    Speakers included:

    • STRSourceKim Fitzpatrick, Host2Host Board Member with STRSource discussed her STR consulting and co-hosting business as well as her properties located in Oregon, Florida and even the lovely Lakeside Lodge in Montana, launching this month and generously donated as a raffle item. Kim can help you get started or uplevel your hosting game with design, setup, and guest services support. SPECIAL OFFER: FREE initial consultation to discuss your STR.

     

    • radious logoKristy Olsen represented Radious and let us know how flexible and easy it can be to offer your listing for daytime rentals. Save on laundry and maximize earnings. If you have an outdoor space, it can become the perfect summer retreat for small, local businesses. SPECIAL OFFER: FREE photography for the first 100 hosts - but hurry since they’ve only got a few more spots available for this fantastic offer!

     

    • Aviva Llorens with PriceLabs helped us understand all the different ways that we can optimize our earnings by using the analytics pulled from their over 200,000 listings around the world. With daily price adjustments, you can create loads of different rules to help you effectively manage your listing and increase occupancy. pricelabs logoCustomer service agents are always available and they offer loads of helpful tools to support you as a host. SPECIAL OFFER:  Use code H2HPL15 when signing up for a new account to get 15% off your first 3 months of service (expires July 30).

     

    • carlos photography logoCarlos Camarena, Community and Education Committee member, offered his photography services to hosts and so many people expressed their thanks for his amazing photos. As Anthony pointed out, well-done photos are the key to a successful rental. It’s worth the investment you make, so take advantage of Carlos’s photography skills today! SPECIAL OFFER: H2H Members receive 10% off!

     

    • be our guest property management logoJessy Culp with Be Our Guest Property Management gave us a great overview of her variety of ala carte services. She can help hosts get started with a new listing, improve their existing offerings, or even just help out on a temporary basis while you go on vacation! SPECIAL OFFER: Referrals leading to a new client onboarding will receive $100! H2H members who sign up directly for co-hosting will receive no set-up fees or 50% off the first month's management fees.

     

    • itrip logoDarlene Kimball was a fantastic representative of iTrip and their boutique property management service offering. With a focus on asset retention and guest satisfaction, they take care of the little details so you don't have to. Their combination of the latest in hosting technology coupled with world-class guest service providers allows them to ensure repeat stays and happy guests. SPECIAL OFFER: H2H members that refer a new client receive no marketing fees, no credit card fees, and free linen service. This offer applies to both the member and their referral.

     

    • a serious production logoLastly, Charity Kuahiwinui spoke on behalf of A Serious Production with a quick overview of their website building and optimization services. From portfolio sites to the installation of Google Analytics or algorithm optimization, we can help you get rolling with a website of your very own! SPECIAL OFFER: H2H Members get 10% off your first project!

     

    We launched a poll at the end of the meetup to learn more about how people feel about in-person activities. We found that 80% of those on the call would have attended if it were held in-person. Look for lots more in-person opportunities to connect in the near future.

  • Thu, April 27, 2023 8:04 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    View of the lake and mountains from the Lakeside LodgeWe are pleased to announce the winner of our first vacation rental raffle of 2023! Loretta Spahmer will have a terrific time visiting the Lakeside Lodge in Montana -- congratulations! Look for more raffle offers later this year and maybe you can be the next lucky winner! 

    If you have a property or item you’d like to donate to Host2Host and have featured in a future newsletter, in social media, and in other communications, we’d love to hear from you! Just email info@host2host.org.

  • Thu, April 27, 2023 8:02 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    We are pleased to share with you that the Community Committee has a new Chair. With a background in marketing, communications, and non-profit management, Joel Selling is the perfect person to assume leadership of the Community Committee. You can read more about Joel, his wife Nancy, and their gorgeous, beachfront family-home in Lincoln City here. Thanks for volunteering, Joel!

  • Thu, March 30, 2023 7:04 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    After the success of the FUN(d) Raising auction in December, we’ve decided to keep the fun rolling in 2023! Periodically we’ll raffle off a super awesome prize generously donated by a Host2Host member. You can support Host2Host and maybe even win a great prize!

    View of lake with mountains in the backgroundGet ready to experience the breathtaking beauty of Montana's nature and help a good cause at the same time! By buying a raffle ticket, you could be one of the first lucky people to stay at a stunning, newly renovated, Montana Lakeside Lodge with four bedrooms and two bathrooms, offering you and your loved ones the perfect opportunity to explore everything Big Sky Country has to offer.

    What's more, every ticket sold will go towards supporting Host2Host, so not only will you have a chance to win a once-in-a-lifetime vacation, but you'll also be doing your part to make a difference in the hosting community.

    king bed with blue bedspread and animal hide draped at the footFrom skiing at Blacktail Mountain to biking at Legacy Bike Park, boating in Flathead Lake, and swimming, sunbathing, and playing on the banks, there's no shortage of fun activities to enjoy. And when the day is done, you can kick back and relax at one of Montana's best- loved restaurants or bars, such as Tamarack Brewing.

    With a normal value of over $250 per night, this incredible vacation can be yours for just $25 per raffle ticket, and if you're the lucky winner, you can even take advantage of a 10% discount on additional nights. Don't miss your chance to create unforgettable memories and support a great cause – buy your raffle ticket today!

    Prize Details
    The prize includes 2 FREE NIGHTS at the lodge for up to 8 people. Additional nights can be reserved with a 10% discount. The winner must pay the $250 cleaning fee. Sorry, no pets and no smoking inside the home. Limit 3 cars in the driveway. No reservations are accepted in July or on holidays. Expires on May 1, 2024.

    Raffle Details
    There are only 40 raffle tickets available for purchase at $25 each, so you’ll have a great chance of winning! Oh, and we’re sweetening the pot too! You can buy 2 tickets for $45 or 5 tickets for $100! If you like those odds, check out the raffle website here. You do not need to be a Host2Host member to participate!

    The last day to buy tickets is April 22nd or until they sell out. The RallyUp raffle website will automatically, randomly select a winner on April 23rd and the winner will be notified shortly thereafter. Don’t miss your opportunity to win a relaxing stay at this absolutely stunning home for yourself, or as a gift for someone you love.

    Help Host2Host Help You

    Kim FitzpatrickFunds raised from this raffle will help pay for the Host2Host membership website from Wild Apricot, whose subscription costs over $1,100 every year! We would love to count you in, so head over to RallyUp to buy your tickets now!

    If you’d like to offer a vacation rental, like Kim kindly did, or have other awesome prizes to contribute to future raffles, email us at info@host2host.org.

  • Thu, March 30, 2023 7:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Idea submitted by Alan Colley, Past-President and co-host of the Fire Lookout in Tiller, OR. Written by Debi Hertert, H2H Founder & Past-President, Hosting Your Home podcast creator, and co-host in SouthWest Portland & Seal Rock, OR.

    Finally! The in-person meetup we’ve all been waiting for!

    Hosts gathered in downtown Portland for our first social meetup of the year. It happened on Saturday, March 18th at The Emerald Line, a restaurant in the Pearl District, owned and operated by dynamic husband and wife duo, Jonah and Jacqueline (Jacq) Gomez.

    woman holding an artful cocktail in her handIt was a real joy to visit with old friends and meet new ones. About 15 new and seasoned members of Host2Host joined us to mix and mingle, to become reacquainted, and to share stories and bits of wisdom in person after a few years of missing each other. Story-telling is always a favorite pastime, and every single one of us has a unique and interesting hosting story to share.

    It was refreshing to reconnect and visit in person with drinks in hand! The Emerald Line was an excellent venue (thank you, Alan Colley for the recommendation). Jacq and Jonah were very attentive and pleasant, plus the tasty tapas were a great complement to the festivities.

    Stay tuned for more in-person meetups. We look forward to offering something similar next quarter.

  • Thu, March 30, 2023 6:55 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    thank you note written in purple inkMarch is the month when Host2Host began accepting member applications way back in 2018. As a result, those of you who’ve been with us from the beginning probably just renewed your account and we just want to take a second to say, Thank You. Without you and others who have come together to unite and give a voice to hosts and so selflessly share resources, we wouldn’t even be here.

    Public Information

    As you renewed, you might have noticed a few fields added to your membership profile on the website. The public data in your profile helps complete our searchable membership database. Details like what city and state you host in can be used by other members to find folks in the same area to meet up and collaborate together.

    Private Information

    Information maintained privately is only available to website administrators. This includes the year you were born and can be provided in aggregate to potential business affiliates who might want to sponsor our events and need to know that our community is in their target audience. The number of properties you host is used similarly, helping our administrators explain the broad impact our community has on hosting.

    Update Your Profile

    Screen shot of the membership update pageIf you haven’t taken a look at your member profile lately, take a second to make a few updates. These edits will have a large impact on the efficacy of our organization making us more knowledgeable and impactful.

  • Wed, February 22, 2023 1:21 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Our little organization-that-could is growing up! As a result, we’re continually evaluating our practices to make sure they still make sense. At the Board Retreat in January, we discussed the committees, which are the engines that keep the organization running. In an effort to streamline communications and return to our roots, we will be reorganizing the committee structure under a simplified format that honors past contributions while allowing us to grow more easily. 

    AdministrativeAdvocacy

    CommunityEducation

    Committees and Task Forces

    Returning to our fundamental values, there will be four primary committees and taskforces may work underneath them on specific projects.

    • The Administrative Committee recruits future leaders and manages the organization’s finances.
    • The Advocacy Committee will maintain a sharp eye on changes both locally and regionally that impact our ability to continue hosting.
    • The Education Committee will provide information to members, facilitates weekly conversational gatherings, and monthly meetups whether in-person or online.
    • The focus of the Community Committee is to foster relationships both with members and with the broader community and provides developmental guidance to help us be as successful as we possibly can be.

    Join a Committee

    hand raised with sticker saying "Yes!" in the palmJoining a committee requires a commitment of 1-3 hours per month, depending upon your level of interest and availability to take on special assignments. You do NOT need to live in the local area and folks from all backgrounds are welcome to contribute. We are welcoming new committee members anytime, so reach out to join the fun!

    We are also accepting volunteers to Chair the Advocacy, Community, and Education committees. You will direct the focus of the team, interface with the Board of Directors, and strengthen your bonds within the Host2Host community. Not-to-mention, it’s an excellent resume-builder!

    Let us know you’re interested at info@host2host.org.


  • Wed, February 22, 2023 1:20 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Idea submitted by President Dabney Tompkins and written by Charity Kuahiwinui

    More and more activities are returning to some semblance of “normal” these days and at Host2Host, we would love nothing more than to see all of your bright, cheery faces in person again. That said, we understand that some folks are unable to or uncomfortable rejoining in-person activities so we’ve been experimenting with ways to offer a hybrid experience to be as inclusive as possible. 

    Experimentation
    2023 Board Retreat at La PalomaOur Board of Directors has been trying a few ways to make our meetings engaging to both in-person and remote participants. At our multi-day Board retreat in January, we tried a few different approaches to including those who couldn’t make it “live” to the event and found it to be a resounding success. By having plenty of laptops set up to capture the in-person activity visually, the remote-based folks were able to feel as though they were in the room. With one computer showing video of all participants and a few others focused expressly on the remote joiners, plus only one computer picking up audio, in-person guests were easily able to be heard and feel connected to everyone in the meeting. 

    Expectation
    We are excited to be able to offer a return to in-person events more regularly in 2023 and are hopeful for at least a handful of get-togethers from April - October. Most of these events will include an online component, so if you can’t make it in person, you can still participate and contribute your ideas. I’m sure our approach will continue to be refined, and we look forward to your suggestions after each event to help us get even better! Hope to “see” you there!

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