First time Hosts

In this toolkit, you will note the steps to take before hosting a guest.

Scroll down and use the links on the left to jump to sections that interest you.
(Your hosting style is up to you. This information isn’t intended as rules, policies, or requirements that you must follow. You can use this resource as you see fit.)

Meet your hosts

You've decided to host

Tim, Gregg, Suzie, and Beverlee shared a lot about what you might think about first as a new host.


We've been there before!
We’ll let you know what to expect.

You can choose how you want to use this resource. The extent to which you follow it is completely up to you. It’s flexible, and you can return to it anytime.

How do I get started as a host on Airbnb?

Points to consider as you get ready

With all the ways you can host, it helps to make a few choices first. You may want to consider:

  • Your financial goals
  • What space you want to share
  • How often you want to host
  • The interaction you want to have with guests
  • When you will start hosting
  • How you want to get paid
  • How you’ll handle check-in and check-out

As you get ready to start, Airbnb’s hospitality standards include tips on the key things that guests love. They can help you get a successful start to hosting.

How do I get started as a host on Airbnb?

What guests will see in your listing

Guests will use information you provide in your listing to decide if they want to stay with you. Here’s the information you can provide your guests about your listing.


Guests spend more time on photos than on any other part of your listing. Captions are especially important: let your photos tell the story of your space.


This is the price you’ve set, plus any additional fees from you or Airbnb.

Listing name

Guests see your listing name first. They may only see the first 20 characters, so start strong.

Listing type

Travelers can tell if your space is an entire home, a private room, or a shared room.


Your calendar shows when your space is available. Travelers will be only be able to book on available days.


Guests will read about your space and your neighborhood.


People see what your space has to offer, like wi-fi, A/C, washer/dryer, or parking.

House Rules

Guests learn your expectations and boundaries and agree to the rules you set before they can book.


People love to know who they’re staying with. They find out more about you through your profile.

How do I get started as a host on Airbnb?

Tips for preparing your space

A clean, uncluttered, and attractive space shows your commitment to great hosting. It can make an instant impression and set the tone for a guest’s entire stay. Experienced hosts stock their space with extras and include touches that communicate their personality and unique hosting style. They also secure personal and sensitive items like passports or documents. Here are two of our hosts talking about what they did to organize their space for guests.

Source: Airbnb
Preparing your community

Your neighbors & landlord will want to talk about it

Why wait until your landlord meets your guests to tell them that you’re hosting? Consider letting them know you’re sharing your space, showing them your listing page, and getting their consent before you start hosting.
Neighbors and landlords alike may be curious about the types of guests you host, the house rules you enforce, and how you manage guest arrivals and departures. Knowing more about you and how you host can help them feel comfortable, and show them you’re responsible, caring, and respectful.

People who live in your community can also be part of your guests’ experiences—that’s why being a responsible host means being a considerate neighbor.
You are responsible for understanding how your local laws work and complying with them. You can look up local regulations at the bottom of the page here.

What to expect when hosting for the first time

Imagine your guest has been on a plane for nine hours

Once a reservation is confirmed, you can use Airbnb to communicate with guests. Many hosts tell us they start conversations with simple and friendly questions. From there, it’s easy to learn more about the guests’ hopes for the trip. You may want to ask questions that are specific to your space. Are they okay with climbing stairs? How many travelers will be staying? Chances are, guests will also have questions for you. Keep in touch with your guest before they arrive. Communicating helps set expectations and makes their arrival smoother.

Source: Airbnb
What to expect when hosting for the first time

You can help guests feel at home

Your attention and communication can help your guests feel supported throughout their stay.

Check-in and arrival

Your guests will be in a new place when they arrive, so it's important to put them at ease with a simple check-in process. If you can welcome your guests in person, a quick tour can help them feel oriented and in control. If you will not be there, make sure guests can get your key in a lockbox or from a neighbor. Hosts like to welcome guests in many different ways, and have a variety of greeting styles. Our hosts have shared maps of their favorite places in the neighborhood, a cup of tea, or a bottle of wine.

During the stay

Guests using Airbnb are typically independent. Still, it’s comforting for them to know they have support during their stay. Make sure your guests know how to contact you. You can let them know how available you’ll be to put them at ease.


When you let your guests know about the check-out process in advance, it can help their departure be smooth. Details about how to lock up and where to leave the key can answer their questions before they need to ask.

What to expect when hosting for the first time

How you get paid

One of the best things about hosting is turning your extra space into extra income. Airbnb makes getting paid clear, simple, and secure. Your guests are charged through the platform when they book. Airbnb collects payment on a secure system and releases it to you 24 hours after your guests check in. For longer-term rentals, the first 28 days of reservation fees will be released to you 24 hours after check-in. You’ll receive monthly installments after that. Depending on your payment processor, it may take a few days to show up in your account. Since Airbnb handles the payments and payouts, you never need to talk about reservation fees with your guests.

Source: Airbnb
What to expect when hosting for the first time

Reviews matter

Reviews are essential to the Airbnb community. Hosts and guests share their experiences through reviews to help other members of this global neighborhood choose their travel plans wisely. Positive reviews can attract more interest in your listing.

Here's how reviews work:

  • Star ratings

    After their stay, guests can rate the cleanliness, location, value, and accuracy of your listing with 1 to 5 stars. This appears on your listing after three guests have posted reviews.

  • Written reviews

    Travelers love to read about other people’s experiences with hosts like you. Guests can write reviews and they often focus on their experience with the host and the space.

  • Review period

    You’ll only see your feedback from a completed trip after both you and your guest have left a review, or at the end of the two-week review period.
    After guests check out, you can remind them to write a review. You may find it helpful to ask for suggestions, feedback, and ways to improve your listing or amenities. Guests can offer perspectives you might not have considered, as Tim discovered.

Source: Airbnb