A Sydney-based start-up is offering home owners the chance to have a property manager for their home on listing sites such as Airbnb, but will this mitigate the risks of using a home-sharing platform?
Entrepreneur Gabriel Sarajinsky has developed a start-up that gives home owners the option to have the income of an Airbnb rental, with a PM to manage the property.
Mr Sarajinsky’s HomeHost offers “a complete Airbnb property management service” which includes guest screening, key exchange and handling queries. It will also organise professional cleaning services, laundry services and airport shuttles. HomeHost takes a 15 per cent fee for these services.
“Renting out your home on websites like Airbnb can be a rewarding yet time-consuming experience. We want you to reap the rewards without the hassle. That’s why we’re offering a complete service that manages your rental property, giving you complete peace of mind whilst increasing your guest bookings and rental income,” Mr Sarajinsky said.
HomeHost has undergone rapid growth since its inception in November 2015, with the number of properties managed under the system increasing five-fold. At the moment, the service is only available to Sydney-based properties.
Airbnb has faced backlash, especially in Sydney recently, due to residents’ unhappiness that their neighbours’ units are being used for short-term leases.
Fines for unauthorised Airbnb rental properties in NSW jumped a staggering 500 per cent under new strata laws, and PMs and landlords have warned owners against trying to make a quick buck on the short-term letting platform.
“The bottom line is that an owners’ corporation cannot have something like Airbnb forced upon them. The person wanting to run the Airbnb must satisfy any number of legal requirements first and, even then, the owners’ corporation has a right to put a stop to it through the by-laws,” PICA Group’s managing director and group CEO, Greg Nash, said.
“If a person in a building is running an Airbnb illegally, many councils are happy to prosecute as they are empowered to enforce zoning and local environmental plan requirements. Additionally, if the person is in breach of a by-law limiting occupancy, they can be subject to fines of $5,500 for the first offence and up to $11,000 for a second offence, with the money going to the owners’ corporation, not the state.”
Recently data from nested.com showed that Sydney owners can repay their mortgages in less than a third of the time if they list their property on Airbnb compared to traditional renting.