Which Properties Work Best on Airbnb vs. VRBO?! (and where you should list)
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Which Properties Work Best on Airbnb vs. VRBO?! (and where you should list)

What’s up YouTube it’s Richard founder
of short-term rental university and Airbnb super host today’s video is going
to be helpful to you in deciding where to list your property by type by
platform and where I think the most opportunity is for you to make the most
money so let me start off with this little caveat I think short-term rentals
work worldwide it’s a global phenomenon and there’s worldwide listings on Airbnb
and VRBO and home away and booking comm and flip key and so on so this works
everywhere in the world that said I have primary experience as a host here
domestically and so like the rules of thumb that I’m going to talk about
really are my personal experience here in the USA I should say I’ve been a
guest I’ve stayed in many Airbnb Zand I use Airbnb almost exclusively when I
travel internationally so there’s a ton of demand for Airbnb worldwide and don’t
let me deter you from listing your global place or your international place
on Airbnb or home away or anything else so in order to try and make this as
helpful as possible I’m going to talk about three different ways to think
about it and it’s basically the demographics of the people that you’re
attracting the location of your property and then the property type let’s start
with the first one location the most important thing in real estate it’s
probably why you bought your home or your apartment or your condo you want to
be somewhere very specific and you’re trying to attract guests to your place
now in my own mind Airbnb has always been a urban solution it tends to be
more popular in denser more urban areas and surrounding like suburbs around that
and in my own mind vacation rental by owner VRBO or home away has always been
a vacation owner in a vacation destination who’s not using their
vacation home and wants to monetize it and they would like to attract other
vacation people to that location in urban areas Airbnb is much more
successful for me in fact it’s the only platform I list I’m busy enough and I
have never even put an urban apartment on VRBO maybe I should maybe I will at
some point in the future but right now it’s doing just fine on Airbnb and it
makes my life really easy it’s clean it’s convenient and I’m busy so that’s
fine I have other properties that are
vacation homes of mine I have one in Colorado and I have one in Alabama and
there I list on both properties and I get some business on Airbnb but it’s
maybe 25% which means the vast majority of my income in those vacation markets
comes from vacation families looking to rent my vacation home and about 75% of
my income comes from home away let’s turn to property type look if you have a
shared space that’s really the bread and butter of air B&B in the way they
launched and originated and I think you can actually rent some shared spaces on
home away but I think that’s the exception and not the rule so by and
large if you’re sharing of space I think air B&B is the go-to because I
think people that are looking to share homes and spaces are going to default to
Airbnb now what if you have a single-family home and you’re renting
that entire property out which is better Airbnb or VRBO slash home away and in my
personal experience again when it’s a vacation rental in a single standalone
home turns out that those homes have typically been rented for a far longer
period of time using the traditional incumbent which is VRBO or home away and
so the edge goes to that finally let’s turn to demographic look
it should come as no surprise at an early stage disruptive innovative force
like Airbnb is likely going to attract younger people and so in my own mind I
think of Millennials and more innovation and Laptop road warriors and things like
that and or young families like I’d like to consider myself that are you know hip
and cool and looking for new experiences and so that’s sort of whatever I think
of Airbnb type guess not to suggest that HomeAway people don’t include some of
those trends and ideas but I find the HomeAway gues tend to be perhaps a
little bit older a little bit more in a certain thinking about when they
vacation and how they vacation they’ve been vacationing as a family for a long
period of time and historically they’ve gone to say VRBO and they’re not looking
for an alternate solution like that’s the default it’s worked for them really
well they probably vacation in the same place every single year for extended
period of time and so again I know it’s a generality
but it seems like you’ve got two different camps you’ve got the younger
more innovative people that are looking for new things and then the more sort of
set in their way is happy not looking for disruption just want the exact same
thing at the same price with you know relatively ease and success and so
that’s the way it’s turned out for me also I’ve tend to find I have younger
more dynamic people they’re visiting me in more urban areas they’re looking on
Airbnb they like the user experience they like the feedback loop with the
reviews they like the app and that tends to be Airbnb and then in my vacation
rentals single-family home in vacation areas it tends to be more established
families that really like using the telephone and there I have a caretaker
that will actually speak to them and walk them through the check-in stages
and so it seems to be a little bit more of the older hospitality
versus the newer app mindset if that makes sense that said the times are
definitely changing and we see more and more people gravitating from the
traditional methodology towards the newer and so I literally see more action
going from home away towards Airbnb I don’t know if it’s weekly quarterly
annually but the trend is clearly that Airbnb is taking a lot of that space
there’s a lot more listings there’s a lot more activity there’s a lot more
price competition and so the disruptive force is being evermore
disruptive so I would encourage everyone no matter where you are in the world no
matter what you’ve done in the past to at least add Airbnb again it’s a
completely free option they don’t charge for the listing so you have absolutely
nothing to lose but your time and you have everything to gain whether it’s a
slot that you wanted to fill in your calendar whether it’s more income
whether it’s a better user experience I personally find transacting on Airbnb
much easier and simpler I like their tax reporting it’s just it’s disruptive and
innovative in a good way and I like that and so do many of my guess I think if
you haven’t listed on Airbnb you owe yourself the opportunity to try and make
it your life a little better and easier and maybe more profitable think about
your location think about the demographics of the people that you’re
trying to attract and think about like the type of property that you have and
then start there so for instance if you’ve got a vacation rental and you
only use it a couple weeks a year and it’s a vacation location and you think
sixty-year-old families with their kids are gonna come stay there maybe start
with VRBO or home away and likewise if you’ve got a one-bedroom in downtown hip
urban area where it’s close to restaurants and clubs and so on and so
forth and pick a city any city maybe start with Airbnb and then as you build
up your business and you get a little bit more hosting experience and you want
to start to maximize your revenue Crosse try them on both keep them both live
just make sure you sync your calendars and you don’t double booked which is a
very common mistake when people first get started on multiple platforms so
just avoid it but get started try them both and I hope you found this video
helpful if you have please leave your comments and your questions below where
do you link what’s the percentage of revenue that you get from Airbnb versus
VRBO and like what property type demographics and location are you in
let’s just share it let’s get it out there in the meantime happy hosting I
hope you liked the video and I would ask that you please subscribe to the channel
thanks so much have a great day oh and one more thing if you haven’t
checked out our podcast check out the links below a lot of great content
expert advice information I think you’re really gonna like it thanks you


  • Charisse Rudolph

    Okay, I am looking for active baby boomers. So Home Away and VRBO will be my best choices. However, I will need to pay attention that Home Away does not block out dates that are not actually being used. Good video! Tnx, C

  • Mark Welpman

    Richard… Spot on again. I have my listing on Airbnb, VRBO/HomeAway, TripAdvisor/FlipKey and Booking.com. My listing is in Lahaina Maui. I receive 98% of my bookings on Airbnb, and the other 2% split up amongst the other websites. VRBO has been a little disappointing due to the very slow traction that I have been getting. Maybe part of the problem is that I don't get a lot of hits is due to my very full calendar. But then again, it's not that big of a complaint. The goal is to keep it booked. So far, So good!

  • Bray Hill House

    My case – demographics: families; location: rural/mountains/retreat; type: whole home. I've been listed for 6 months. The score is: Airbnb 5, VRBO 12. But Airbnb is performing worse over time because 5 out of my first 10 bookings were Airbnb whereas 9 out of the last 10 bookings were VRBO. Since Airbnb is tapering off I'm going to work on my listing to make it more attractive you hipsters and young people. I list on every platform I can find but only Airbnb & VRBO have gotten me bookings.

  • Lauri Hines

    I have five vacation rentals on the Central Oregon Coast and am building a sixth.

    VRBO tanked when they raised their traveler fees, and my bookings went from 75% VRBO/20% Airbnb/5% Flipkey to 75% Airbnb and 20% VRBO.

    I agree with Richard's comments on the typical Airbnb vs. VRBO guest.

    Since the first of the year, VRBO has been on fire. I have gotten 30 instant bookings in the last three weeks, most of them new travelers, and another 15 or so inquiries, about half of which converted to bookings.

    I think it must be the ad campaign they are running, since so many of these are new travelers. Wondering if anyone else is experiencing the same?

  • Morgan Rothblat

    In my case it is the complete opposite, I have a single family home near a mountain in Vermont. 12 bookings on Airbnb, and only 1 on VRBO.

  • Cyrus Murphy

    I'm looking at your Crested Butte listing, I think an HDR shot would make your first picture so much better. Your current one is overexposed (lots of white clipping) and you can't see what's out the windows. But not the over-the-top HDR look where it almost looks like a surreal painting.

  • kathleen zamsky

    I would love to know your opinion about Plus. As a 5 star Superhost, I am having a difficult time competing with Plus. I honestly do not know why I was not picked. My listing is fantastic in a very upscale part of Seattle. My home is Zillowed at 1.7, nice neighborhood very convenient to most of Seattle.

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