It’s no secret that the demand for vacation rentals and other short-term rentals in Dallas is sky-high. After all, Dallas is one of the biggest business travel destinations in the world. Not only can Dallas hotels be expensive, but availability may be limited—causing many travelers to turn to services like Airbnb to find rentals. Many travelers also feel as though an Airbnb (or similar) rental provides a more authentic experience than a hotel.
If you live in Dallas, you may be toying around with the idea of becoming an Airbnb host yourself to take advantage of this high demand for rentals. Before you do, however, it’s important to not only weigh the pros and cons of Airbnb hosting but to be aware of Dallas laws and regulations that are in place regarding these types of rentals. Doing so can help you make a more informed decision and potentially help you avoid costly penalties or fines down the road.
Benefits of Becoming an Airbnb Host
There are several benefits to consider when it comes to becoming an Airbnb host.
Bring in Additional Income
Perhaps the biggest draw of Airbnb hosting is that of bringing in additional income. By renting out extra space in your home, you can earn extra money that may help to offset your monthly rent or mortgage costs. This can be a great alternative to taking on a second job or picking up more hours at your current job.
Flexibility and Versatility
Being an Airbnb host also offers a great deal of flexibility and customization. For example, you can choose to only rent your place out during peak times of the year, such as the holiday season. On the other hand, you can offer rentals year-round if you wish. Airbnb also allows you the freedom to decide on your own rental rates.
Meet New People
If you enjoy meeting new people, then becoming an Airbnb host can be a great way to do this. Not only will you have the chance to host new guests in your home on a regular basis, but you can act as a “tour guide” of sorts by making recommendations around the city. A lot of Airbnb hosts find this to be a very rewarding experience.
Potential Drawbacks of Becoming an Airbnb Host
Of course, there are some possible drawbacks to consider when it comes to Airbnb hosting as well.
Income Can Be Unpredictable
If you’re looking for a side-gig where your income is predictable from one month (or even one week) to the next, this may not be the best option for you. Demand for rentals can fluctuate greatly, and so can your income from hosting an Airbnb.
Finding Renters Can Be Time Consuming
Communicating with renters and potential renters can be a time-consuming task. You’ll need to make yourself readily available to respond to questions and inquiries about your rental. Even once you’ve secured renters for a particular time frame, you’ll need to be in frequent contact with them to provide the information they need prior to their stay. During your guests’ stay, they may need to get ahold of you with additional questions or requests. Don’t forget to get renter’s insurance just in case!
Renters Aren’t Always the Best Guests
You’re taking on a bit of liability when you open up your home to “strangers,” even if they are paying for their stay. Not all guests areas clean and courteous as you may expect, so you may end up with some cleaning up to do after they leave.
Some Cities Have Strict Regulations on Rentals
Most major cities in the state of Texas side with Airbnb rentals, one of which is Dallas. At this time, Dallas has not made any official Airbnb regulations. Moreover, according to the Dallas Business Journal, booked Airbnb listings grew by 34% in the last year alone. This increasing demand for Airbnb rentals can be contributed to the large number of tourists flowing into the city every year.
What About Condominiums and Single-Family Homes?
If you own a condominium and are thinking about renting it out as an Airbnb, remember that state laws take precedent. If your condo is located inside a Class A Dwelling, you will still be prohibited to conduct any unhosted rentals for less than 30 days. In addition to this, your condominium’s HOA may have specific bylaws in place that make it difficult to become an Airbnb host. For example, some may have minimum/maximum lease terms or even explicitly prohibit the use of units for vacation rentals.
Keep in mind, too, that renting out your home on Airbnb or a similar platform could also subject you to additional taxes, which could eat into your profits.
Making the Most of Your Dallas Airbnb Rental
If you’ve decided to become an Airbnb host in Dallas, there are a few tips worth keeping in mind that can help you make the most of the experience.
Stay on Top of Changing Laws
First and foremost, stay up-to-date on new laws and changes to existing laws. For example, the city is currently trying to pass a law that would require Airbnb hosts to list their active rental addresses on the platform. The idea here is that this would prevent commercial investors from using the platform for profits. Airbnb is fighting this law as a violation of free speech, but you’ll want to stay on top of this and other proposed laws that could affect you so you don’t commit any violations as an Airbnb host.
Hire a Professional Cleaning Company
Keeping your rental clean is one of the best ways to ensure great guest reviews, which can, in turn, make it easier to find new renters and drive up your income. If you haven’t done so already, consider working with a local cleaning company to help you keep your place in tip-top shape. Valet maids is happy to offer a number of cleaning services to suit your needs in Dallas and the surrounding areas.
Have a Plan For Maintenance Issues
In addition to having a cleaning company you can trust, it’s also wise to have an experienced contractor or handyman on-call so you can address any maintenance issues quickly during your guest’s stay. For example, if a pipe springs a leak while you have guests, you’ll want to be able to have this taken care of quickly and affordable.
Know How Much to Charge
Airbnb allows you to charge as much or as little as you’d like for your rental, but there are some important factors worth taking into consideration when it comes to pricing your property. A good place to start would be to look up current prices for similar rentals in your area and try to price yours competitively. When deciding on a price, be sure to also factor in things like cleaning fees to maximize your profits.
Make Sure Your House Rules Are Clear
Avoid issues with your guests by writing out a specific set of “house rules” that are clear. This should include policies on things like pets, children, noise/quiet hours, and similar items. Make sure your guests are issues a copy of these house rules prior to their stay so they can review them and address any questions or issues with you prior to their check-in.
Overall, becoming an Airbnb host in Dallas can be a great opportunity for extra income in the Big D!