What awaits you with the Airbnb boom

by Steve Van Derodar

An example of an Airbnb listing. | Photo courtesy of Airbnb

The world is undoubtedly fast-changing. In the past, rental properties were limited to short-listed both standard and expensive hotels and condominiums. Today, it is no longer the case. More and more properties can be stayed on for a few days or more, sometimes benefitting serviced apartment treatments and then you can switch to newer places depending on your taste. It has become affordable in that according to your specifications you can find them at the tip of your fingertips. 

I have always wanted to touch on the topic of Airbnb in the Philippines. The truth is the hospitality business is one of the strongest suits of the Philippines. When you look at it, short term rentals can be profitable as we receive consistently high numbers of tourists annually. 

What is Airbnb? Founded in 2008, Airbnb, Inc. is an American vacation rental online marketplace company based in San Francisco, California, United States. Airbnb offers arrangements for lodging, primarily homestays, or tourism experiences. The company does not own any of the real estate listings, nor does it host events; it acts as a broker, receiving commissions from each booking. It became one of the most valuable private startups in the world, reaching a valuation of $31 billion at one point. In the Philippines, it has generated an increased patronage due to the unique offerings of Philippine properties.

“For the guests, Airbnb offers variety. It offers the choice to be in one’s private property experiencing homely settings. For the property owners, renting to various customers in a single month can mean flexibility and more income considering the variable rates, depending on the season.”

For the guests, Airbnb offers variety. It offers the choice to be in one’s private property experiencing homely settings. For the property owners, renting to various customers in a single month can mean flexibility and more income considering the variable rates, depending on the season. It can also even command higher pricing dependent on the local events and the location of the property. 

There are definitely various types of properties from budget, mid-range, and luxury Airbnb accommodation. Access to a building can also mean access to amenities of the building. Swimming pools, gyms, roof decks are almost standard in a luxury building. For resorts, clients look forward to the pools, balconies, and its access to the beach. In short, Philippines Airbnb rentals offer you just anything you desire from budget-friendly to the most sophisticated service in the name of adventure or lodging experience. 

Some condominium developments are now open to having short rentals like Airbnb does which are being marketed to allowing unit owners to enroll in hosting websites such as Airbnb. Generally, not all condominiums allow it as offering plans or the Condo homeowners association does not allow it. Few condo projects along Makati avenue Makati are open to it in response to high market demand. There is now a considerable boom that both investors and customers are agreeing on its advantages.

“Generally, not all condominiums allow it as offering plans or the Condo homeowners association does not allow it. Few condo projects along Makati avenue Makati are open to it in response to high market demand.”

If you do not have the property yet, you may consider purchasing a condo development that allows short-term rentals or specifically Airbnb. This is another flexibility from the typical regular rental terms as allowable in your property ownership. Rentals is a key profit-earning ability with condo ownership. Either way, through rentals, the property’s purchase price is paid off in the long term. Pre-construction developments make it more affordable to acquire units due to friendlier payment terms.

Personally, when I was traveling back and forth to the US and Manila for business, before I actually went back to my condo, I had to stay a night or two in a local hotel just for me to feel the intra-tourism. It is the feeling that you would want to be in a different ambiance before coming back to the usual and routinely. Likewise, many others would want to escape from the routinely and experience living in a different setting temporarily.

Airbnb hosting is a good opportunity to earn passive income, especially for OFWs, retirees, and millennials. Anybody who is a property owner can make profits with rentals. Another factor that makes Airbnb hosting profitable is the affordability of property prices in the country. In fact, the Philippines is one of the Asian countries with the cheapest real estate prices. There are several units that can be considered for investment especially in areas with high traffic of tourist and short stays travelers.

Biggerpockets.com points out that “Making money on Airbnb is simple, assuming you already have a property you’d like to list on the platform. After you have created an account and your listing, the backend business operations are pretty much done for you. The website, marketing, payment, and daunting list of miscellaneous tasks are handled by Airbnb. Now you have just got to manage your property well, interact with renters online, and create a good user experience for each guest.”

A quick way to estimate the amount of revenue is adding the days of occupancy or days booked multiplying their daily rate and by subtracting the local average expenses, fees, etc. to get your net profit. Checking out other listings in the area by using Airbnb website for research purposes is also recommended. By searching your local market, you will get a map of listings in your area. Click through several properties in the same submarket you are looking to invest in, and then browse their calendar for the current month and one to two months in the future. You can also gauge on the properties that are in demand and are key tourism spots worth of your investments.

“Airbnb offers a promise to both guests and owners. It can be a lucrative business that can match a need for comfortable yet reassuring accommodation, an experience that guarantees satisfaction for the price it deserves.”

Airbnb has more than 6 million listings all over the world in around 190 countries and the Philippines is one of its booming markets. Once you click on a listing, you can see a range of information about that listing, including the size of the space and its amenities, check-in and pricing information, a detailed description of the space, house rules, safety features, and availability. Can you imagine listing your own property?

There may be challenges in the recent times about the travel industry due to the pandemic but the prospect of rentals in the property sector in a country like the Philippines is up swinging pre-pandemic and could be a sole indicator of its potential successes once the global situation normalizes.

Airbnb offers a promise to both guests and owners. It can be a lucrative business that can match a need for comfortable yet reassuring accommodation, an experience that guarantees satisfaction for the price it deserves. You can see for yourself how it can be financially advantageous to you. In either case, there is something that awaits you with the Airbnb boom.

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(Stevenson’s experience in Philippine Real Estate spans more than 15 years. He has been involved in horizontal, vertical, vacation and commercial properties. He has worked as an International Property Specialist to markets in Asia, Europe and North America with Ayala Land, Federal Land and Century Properties. Through PhilHouseHunters, he offers real estate investment opportunities, marketing, and consultancy with a key focus to Metro Manila and Mega Cebu areas. Visit www.philhousehunters.com. Email at derodarsales@gmail.com.)

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