A Simple Second Income with Social Benefits

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Posted by The Savvy Retiree on April 18, 2017 in Money Saving Strategies, Personal Finances

Anna Lebedeva writing on second incomes…

Matt and Tamara Brink started renting out their family home in Colorado Springs a year ago, during the periods when they were away.

“It generates a little extra income for us to fund a vacation or a trip now and then,” says Matt.

They are not trying to turn hosting via Airbnb into a substantial income, but they are happy with the returns it gives them.

In 2016, they rented out their home for six weeks while they were away on business or vacation.

“Part of our thinking from a safety and security standpoint is that we would rather have someone in our house while we are gone versus it sitting empty,” he says.

Matt emphasizes that, for them, it is not just about money. They enjoy the community aspect of Airbnb.

“If you are a consumer of Airbnb and like that community, then you will likely also enjoy sharing your home,” he says. “People leave us gifts and kind notes, and we’ve made friends through the process. Someone who doesn’t enjoy using Airbnb themselves won’t likely have a great experience sharing through Airbnb either.”

Since its launch in 2008, Airbnb has become the biggest player on the peer-to-peer, short-term rental market with almost two million listings in 191 countries. Over the years, the online platform has simplified the listing process, and now it takes less than an hour to set up a host page and start renting out in return for a modest, 3% fee.

Tamara and Matt’s home is in downtown Colorado Springs is near the food and entertainment district, so renting it out is never a problem.

“We originally priced it at what we thought would be competitive, but we were so flooded with inquiries that I had to raise the price a bit. But we still get flooded with inquiries, and sometimes, I have to temporarily remove the listing,” says Matt.

Tamara and Matt didn’t have to invest any money in creating this second income. They simply rent out their family home when they are out of town for $175 per night.

“We first started using Airbnb as consumers. In our travels, both nationally and internationally, we found that staying in someone’s home provided a more comfortable experience and often a better taste of the culture and ‘local experience’ in a particular location,” says Matt.

“Business travels began pulling me away more often, and we thought we might try playing the part of sharing our home on Airbnb. More than the financial gains, our first interest was in participating in a network of ‘home sharers.'”

You can find some of the most unexpected spaces turned into rentals…vintage trailers, old school buses, yurts, and boats…while many people try to earn money with what they already own by renting out their family homes or an extra room that they were using as storage.

P.S. Discover how you can enjoy a more laidback, authentic, independent way of life in The Savvy Retiree Daily. Sign up below to have it delivered – free of charge – to your email inbox.

Image: ©iStock.com/GoodLifeStudio

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