Only five years ago, Airbnb was a relatively unknown option for property owners in Swansea. Today, there are over 854 properties being hosted in the city, and they’re rented for an average of 76% of the year*.
Many landlords and property owners in Swansea are looking for ways to diversify their portfolios in the face of increased legislation and taxation, and because of the student property market being taken over by new build accommodation.
So why aren’t all landlords turning to Airbnb?
What is Airbnb?
Instead of booking a hotel or B&B for your holiday or short break, Airbnb allows you to rent someone’s home or holiday let property. Staying in someone’s home offers a more personal, individual experience than staying in a chain hotel.
Airbnb has become the UK’s number 1 short-let online platform. They connect landlords and property owners with guests (much like a hotel booking site). Their site is very user-friendly, and guests can read and leave reviews about their experiences with different hosts. Due to this review-based marketing, hosts have a vested interest in providing great guest experiences.
In 2019, Airbnb has 150 million users worldwide, 2.9 million hosts, 6 million listings, and its total global economic impact was $100 billion dollars. Of course, this is set to increase.
Airbnb in Swansea
Swansea has seen a massive year-on-year increase in properties being advertised for short-term lettings on Airbnb: 178% growth in 2016-2017, 159% growth in 2017-2018, 131% growth already to Q2 in 2019-2020.
Airbnb in Mumbles, Swansea, is particularly popular, though the city has its draw too. The convenience of being able to leave work/shopping/dining in Swansea City Centre and be on the beach sunbathing or swimming in the sea within 10 minutes is unrivalled.
With 32 miles of stunning coastline, there is interest in Airbnb in Gower.
Demand for short-let accommodation in Swansea City Centre is set to increase with the £1.3 billion City Deal underway. Not only will this bring in tourism, there will also be an influx of contractors and business looking for Airbnb properties in Swansea Marina for their staff whilst they’re in Swansea to build and work.
Once the indoor arena is open, this will also attract more visitors coming to Swansea for concerts and shows.
So why isn’t everyone turning to Airbnb in Swansea?
Short-letting through Airbnb can be a logical move, but there are logistics to contend with in order to make it a success.
There are 3 key areas to get right:
Time. As many landlords know, managing a residential let takes up a lot of time, and managing short-lets is no different. You have to handle bookings and communication with guests, review pricing strategies, vet guests, and manage contractors.
Availability. As a host, you’ll be expected to be on hand 24/7 to respond to potential guests and to handle any questions or maintenance issues that arise once the guests have arrived. As they aren’t staying there very long, guests will expect things to be dealt with quickly.
Resources. You’ll need reliable contractors, hotel standard linen management, and information about what’s happening in the local area to attract guests to your property. Even in the most rustic of properties, guests will expect a high level of cleanliness and you need to know you’ve the resources to get your property turned around and ready for new guests asap.
Professional Co-Hosting solutions
Pass the Keys, Swansea is a new kind of property management company that specialises in short-letting. We work with landlords and homeowners to host their properties on sites like Airbnb and Booking.com at a professional standard, and handle the time, availability and resources issues so you don’t have to. We’re a full service operation, created specifically to give homeowners the ability to maximise their short-let rental income without any hassle.
Pass the Key is the UK’s leading short-let property management company, and one of only three companies in the whole of the UK to be awarded Airbnb’s Professional Co-Host status.
When guests book to stay in a property managed by a Professional Co-Host, they know they’re getting the high standard they’re looking for.
We recently interviewed the manager of Pass the Keys Swansea, Hannah McCartan, to find out more about her vast experience in the property industry. You can find out more about Hannah by reading this blog post.
Find out how much you can earn through short-letting here.