How to Start Airbnb in Australia: Essential Steps

How to Start Airbnb in Australia

By The Hospitable Team

Considering hosting on Airbnb to earn some extra income? Owning an Airbnb in Australia can be very profitable since short-term rentals are definitely on the rise. Recent research revealed that hosts in Australia can have an average monthly income of up to $3000. If things go well, running an Airbnb can even become your primary source of income.

So, how does it all work, and how do you get started? In this blog post, you’ll find tips on how to start Airbnb in Australia and turn it into a success story.

You may also want to check out our blog article, where we share some advice for Airbnb hosts that can help make your journey to success faster and easier.

You may want to check the detailed e-book on starting and managing an Airbnb business. Download the full version here.

Check Local STR Laws and Regulations

Before you start planning your Airbnb business, it’s important to consider legal issues first. In fact, it’s absolutely legal to start Airbnb in Australia, but you should be aware of certain STR rules and regulations before you list your property on Airbnb.

Laws that regulate short-term rental accommodations (STRA) in Australia tend to vary from state to state, and in some states, local government laws are different from state laws, which can cause some confusion. That’s why you should research short-term rental laws and regulations in your area and contact local authorities to learn more about regulations, obligations, and restrictions specific to your circumstances.

Depending on your city or state, you may need to obtain a permit from your local council, register with the authorities, pay taxes, comply with fire safety standards, and meet certain obligations.

For example, hosts in New South Wales (NSW) are required to register their STRA dwellings on the NSW Government’s STRA register and comply with a new STRA Fire Safety Standard. There is also a registration fee of $65 for the first 12 months and an annual renewal fee of $25. Hosted and unhosted STRA listings can operate all year round across NSW, but in Greater Sydney, unhosted STRA listings are limited to only 180 days per year.

Remember that STRA laws and regulations can change at any time, so it’s better to watch for these potential updates to ensure compliance. Letting your neighbors know you plan to host is also a good idea. Then, they’ll have the chance to let you know if they have any concerns or considerations, and you’ll be able to take measures to avoid neighbor complaints. Remember that if your property is strata, you must also check by-laws relating to short-term rentals and obtain any strata compliance if required in your scheme.

Regarding insurance, it’s important to remember that renting out your residential property on Airbnb is considered commercial or business use and is not covered by a standard Homeowner Insurance policy. This means you need to have valid STRA insurance before you begin to host paying guests, whether you want to rent out your entire house or apartment or just a part of it.

As an OTA platform, Airbnb offers protection for hosts with AirCover, but this is NOT valid STRA insurance, although many property owners believe this is all they need. To ensure that your listing has adequate liability coverage and property protection, purchase a supplementary insurance package tailored to Airbnb and other short-term rentals. 

You may also want to check out our blog article, which discusses the main ways to get Airbnb insurance in Australia.

Research Your Local Market and Competition

Now, you should do market research to determine the demand and competition for short-term rentals in your local area. You can browse the Airbnb listings in your area to see how they are decorated and what amenities they offer and check their prices and guest reviews.

You should also consider such factors as:

  • The seasonality and peak periods of travel in your area
  • The average occupancy rate and nightly rate of properties similar to yours
  • The target audience and customer segments for your property

This info will help you determine what features and amenities you’ll need to provide to meet your potential guests’ expectations and develop a marketing strategy for your Airbnb. You’ll also better understand how much money you’ll need to invest in your rental space to make it cozy and ensure enjoyable stays for your ideal guests.

Remember that if you want to succeed in a highly competitive Australian STR market, you must do your best to provide a fantastic experience for your guests and make them happy. One of the most important aspects to ensure this is effective communication with guests via Airbnb messages.

It’s important not only to respond to guest messages as fast as possible but also to be proactive and use messages to provide your guests with the necessary information at the right time. Automating guest communication using tools like Hospitable is the easiest way to do it.

Have conversations with your guests even when you sleep.

We will detect questions and answer on your behalf; send fully custom messages triggered by events, and much more!

Prepare Your Property for Welcoming Guests

Your next step is to get your home ready for guests, considering their comfort, convenience, and safety. Your task is to spruce your space and create an inviting atmosphere so your guests can feel at home away from home. This is what you can do:

  • Make any necessary repairs and replace any broken or damaged appliances and fixtures.
  • Equip your home with safety items like smoke alarms, carbon monoxide detectors, fire extinguishers, etc.
  • Furnish your property with durable, comfortable, and functional furniture.
  • Update your home décor to create a modern look with neutral colors that appeal to a broader range of travelers. You may want to check out our blog article to find ideas and inspiration for living room decoration.
  • Equip your home with essential amenities to make your guests’ stay enjoyable. You may use our rental inventory checklist to ensure that you cover all the basics.
  • Create a welcome book or manual with instructions, house rules, and local tips for guests.
  • Install new technology like smart thermostats or smart locks to enhance the experience and streamline your operations.

Set Your Pricing Strategy

It’s up to you to set nightly rates for your Airbnb listing, and technically, you can charge anything you like. But don’t expect your property to be popular among travelers if your rates are too high.

When determining the price for your rental space, you need to consider factors such as your location and target audience, your property size and the amenities you provide, seasonality, and nightly rates for similar listings. This data will help you set a competitive price that your potential guests will consider fair.

The most effective way to manage your pricing is to use a dynamic pricing tool. Its algorithm can help you set a competitive rate based on current market data and maximize your revenue.

Establish Your Systems and Processes

You’ll need to decide how much time, effort, and resources you will devote to hosting. Managing a short-term rental and providing great customer service involves a lot of responsibilities and requires much time.

A smart decision is to outsource some hosting responsibilities. Consider hiring professional cleaners and develop a comprehensive cleaning checklist and schedule to ensure your property is thoroughly cleaned during each turnover. Hire local professionals, such as a plumber and electrician, to help you with ongoing maintenance and small repairs.

Consider automating your hosting routine using vacation rental software like Hospitable. Our tool can help you automate most of the repetitive daily tasks and streamline your operations to ensure everything runs smoothly.

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List Your Rental on Airbnb

Finally, it’s time to create an Airbnb listing to get your STR property out to the public. Upload beautiful photos of each room and highlight your best features and amenities to attract the attention of potential guests. Create an accurate listing description to set appropriate guest expectations and mention your home’s unique selling points. Complete your host profile to help guests know you better, show them that you are a professional host who is serious about hosting, and encourage travelers to book.

Strive for Continuous Improvement

Transforming your home into a successful Airbnb property requires careful planning and preparation, attention to detail, and dedication to providing an exceptional guest experience. We hope that our tips on how to start Airbnb in Australia will help you create an inviting space that attracts many guests, earns excellent reviews, and generates a steady income.

But remember that you should always stay proactive and continuously improve your rental property and guest experience based on their feedback and market trends. It’s important to regularly update amenities and home decor to ensure your listing remains competitive.

The hospitality industry is constantly evolving, and Airbnb guests have high expectations regarding customer service, so continuous improvements can help ensure the success of your vacation rental for years to come.

If you need more information, you may want to check out our Airbnb hosting how-to guide.

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Airbnb Hosting Guide for Beginners

Hosting on Airbnb can be a very lucrative and rewarding path, but it’s not that simple. We’ve created this comprehensive Airbnb hosting guide that covers all the essential things you need to do to begin hosting and set your business for success.


Airbnb Messages: Communication that Builds Rapport

There are some very practical steps you can take to make sure your communication is on point.
So what can you do to build rapport more effectively and improve your chances of getting good communication reviews? Let’s find out, shall we?

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Airbnb Automation: 7 Ways to Streamline Your Business

Airbnb automation can help remove the stress from the equation of managing your STR business and give you more free time to focus on providing exceptional guest experience and increasing profits or spend this time on things you care about.

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