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How to become an Airbnb host this Christmas

November 6, 2019

If you’re heading away for the holidays this year, why not cover the cost of Christmas presents (or that ski pass) and Airbnb your home?

Rental rates are at a premium during the most wonderful time of the year, with thousands of tourists, typically visiting family or friends, searching for a homely experience away from home. In fact, if you have a property in London, the average daily rate for an entire home on Airbnb is £140, according to data from AirDNA. Westminster has the highest average rate of £184. Kensington and Chelsea follows with £179, and the City of London is third with £162.

Spend a cosy five nights at your in-laws and you’ve effectively made an average of £700.


December is comparable to the prime holiday months on Airbnb

Out of the winter months, December has the most expensive daily rates – comparable to the prime holiday months in the summer. During December 2018, the average cost of renting an entire property in the capital on Airbnb was £146. In the past two years, only four other months had a higher average: July 2018 and June, July, and August 2019.

Additionally, in December of last year, 34,152 properties in London were booked on Airbnb, which was second only to July throughout 2018.

Across London, the median Airbnb rates for the week of Christmas range from £160 to £180 and New Year’s Eve sits at £200. The most in demand days in December are the 27th to 31st.

Related: How Much Can You Earn on Airbnb?

The basics of Airbnb

A lot of homeowners and landlords between tenancies choose Airbnb management as peace of mind that their home is in good hands.

With our Airbnb management service, Portico Host, all you need to do is pass the keys and we’ll do the rest! We provide a complete management package so all you need to do is let us know when you’d like your property rented out and we’ll list your property, find suitable guests (who you can approve), prepare your home for their arrival, be there to greet the guests and welcome them inside, and then clean up when they leave.

We operate in London, Liverpool and Manchester and offer three different Airbnb management packages, starting from 15% plus VAT.

Airbnb management

Click on the image to the right to get an instant Airbnb valuation, or you can find out more about the service here.

If you choose to Airbnb your home without management, you will ideally need to be in the area while you let out your home to let your guests in and check them out. To list your property on Airbnb, you have to register with the website by providing an email address and creating a password. Then, you make a profile for your home or the room you’d like to let out. Upload photos, decide on the policies you want to have, and give details of the property, its location, and what extras are included.

Related: Top 5 Things To Know About Airbnb

Taxes, insurance, and mortgages

To become an Airbnb host, it’s important to know what you’ll be taxed on and what to do about your insurance and mortgage. We have laid out the details on Airbnb mortgages and what you need to know in our recent article.

Essentially, if you rent out just a room within the home you live in, you could opt in for the rent-a-room scheme, which allows homeowners to earn up to £7,500 from a lodger without having to pay tax on it. You’ll be taxed on any income above this, and you’ll need to fill out a self-assessment tax return.

If you’re letting out an entire property or you don’t opt in for the rent-a-room scheme, you’ll also need to pay tax through self-assessment. Rental income is taxed on your profits, meaning you- can subtract your expenses, such as cleaning or Airbnb management, from your earnings.

The majority of home insurance policies won’t normally cover renting out rooms. However, some may agree depending on if you’re renting out a room instead of the whole property, how frequently you plan to let it out, and the number of guests staying.

If you opt for Portico Host Airbnb management, our Comprehensive and Comprehensive Plus packages include Portico Host Cover, our bespoke and more extensive insurance cover. This insurance re-insures your current home insurance (which usually won't cover you for paying guests) and gives you additional cover for theft or damage with up to £2m public liability.

Related: Portico Host FAQs

Is Airbnb a viable buy-to-let alternative?

Airbnb hosts in Greater London aren’t allowed to rent their property out for over 90 days per year, unless they secure planning permission for a change of use. Because of this, Airbnb is more of a short-term solution for homeowners and landlords in the capital. While looking for a long-term tenant or while your property is on the market, letting your property on Airbnb can help you avoid void periods and bring in extra revenue.

Properties across the rest of England and Scotland that are let out for at least 140 days per year are deemed as self-catering, meaning they’re subject to business rates. Because of the higher amount of days you can rent your property out for, Airbnb can be a great alternative in cities outside of the capital, such as Liverpool and Manchester.

Having a short-term rental property in the right location is a significant factor in making higher returns, which has been covered in an article on Landlord Today. Our research has revealed Airbnb hosts and landlords of short-term rentals in Fairfield, Liverpool achieve the best yields in the North West’s cities of Manchester and Liverpool at 27.2%. Of the 10 best performing locations, eight are Liverpool postcodes.

 airbnb management

Airbnb management in London!

As we mentioned earlier, at Portico, we offer an Airbnb management service, Portico Host, for landlords and homeowners in London, Liverpool, and Manchester. We’ve actually recently joined Airbnb's professional co-host scheme, so you can guarantee your home is in good hands.

We offer three unique packages from let-only to a premium managed package, which takes all the hassle out of the equation. In terms of timeframes, we can get your property setup on Airbnb in just one week.

We offer a full range of services, from specialist insurance and a personal meet and greet service, in addition to no extra costs for a lock box and professional photography.

If you are interested in this offer or finding out more about Airbnb or Portico Host, drop an email to the host team at host@portico.com or call them on 0207 099 4000!!!!

To find out how much your property can achieve from short-term letting, use our Instant Valuation Tool.


We already know how much your rental property is worth. Type your postcode to find out and get an online valuation within 60 seconds.

Get an Instant Valuation

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