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10 Airbnb property maintenance mistakes to avoid

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10 Airbnb Property Maintenance Mistakes You Need to Avoid

Make hosting enjoyable, get 5-star reviews, and earn Superhost status with these 10 crucial Airbnb property maintenance mistakes to avoid.

I'm Sabrina, a short-term rental host coach who knows starting your own Airbnb biz can quickly get waaaay too complicated. But it doesn't have to be. I help first-time Airbnb hosts like you go from overwhelmed to "Yes!! Another  booking!"
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When you first visit your Airbnb property, you might be shocked by how many issues guests haven’t told you about. You’ll quickly realize how important it is to avoid common property maintenance mistakes, which can quickly lead to negative reviews and low profitability.

If you want to make hosting more enjoyable, earn more 5-star reviews, and achieve Airbnb Superhost status, make sure you’re avoiding the 10 property maintenance mistakes, below.

This post may contain affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, I may earn a commission at no additional cost to you. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. I’m not affiliated with Airbnb in any way (other than being an Airbnb host, of course). Read my full disclosure policy here.

10 Airbnb Property Maintenance Mistakes You Need to Avoid

Airbnb maintenance is essential for a 5-star short-term rental. | The Realist

#1: Not living at the property first

As a new Airbnb host, one of the most impactful things you can do is live at your rental property before your first guest. And I really mean live there, don’t just stop by for a walkthrough. Sleep in all the beds. Use all the showers. Cook every meal there.

When you do, you’ll be surprised at just how many things need your attention. You might find the brand-new bed squeaks, the toilets run, and the dishwasher doesn’t drain. Living at the property yourself gives you a chance to catch these issues BEFORE your guests do.

Proactively finding and fixing issues will immediately lead to better reviews and your first few reviews are by FAR the most important! That said, if you ever do get a less-than-perfect review, here’s how to make that negative review benefit your business.

Recommended: How To Make Negative Airbnb Reviews Work In Your Favor

#2: Not doing regular property maintenance

Even if you catch a lot of issues before your first guest arrives – surprise! – there will still be many more issues that pop up. so, plan to visit your Airbnb for regular property maintenance checks at least every six months. (Go more often, if possible!)

Doing so will ensure that you’re addressing small issues before they become so big that they impact your business. But, what exactly does regular property maintenance entail? Get your step-by-step guide to rental property maintenance in this blog post.

Recommended: Short-Term Rental Property Maintenance: Your Step-By-Step Guide

Short-term rental property maintenance is essential to keep your Airbnb in great shape. | The Realist

#3: Not treating your cleaning crew well

As an Airbnb host, the most important relationship you can protect is your relationship with your cleaning crew. That’s because your cleaners have the biggest impact on guests’ first impressions.

Cleanliness has a HUGE impact on guests–so much so that “Very clean” is one of the most common pieces of feedback I consistently get in guest reviews!) Unfortunately, great cleaning crews are hard to find. When you do find them, be kind and thoughtful in all your communication. Tell them when they’ve done a great job. Give generous Christmas gifts. And check out my tips on how to successfully provide feedback to your cleaning crew.

Recommended: 5 Things Your Airbnb Guests Really, Really Want

#4: Not having a backup lockbox

Having a keyless entry at your Airbnb is crucial. Otherwise, you risk guests losing the key, forgetting to leave it at checkout, or locking themselves out–all of the potential issues are just not worth it.

Plus, a good keyless entry lets you control who has access to your property and when. This gives you peace of mind and creates a more secure property for your guests.

That said, it’s still possible to get locked out if your keyless entry does or malfunctions. So, it’s vital that you have a backup physical key in a lockbox on your property, just in case. Then, when your guest calls you at 3 AM saying they’re locked out (seriously, it happens) all you have to do is share the lockbox code with the physical key. Problem solved.

These are just two of the many essential items you need to make your Airbnb a huge success–get 100+ crucial items for your Airbnb in here:

#5: Not having a nearby handyman

Your keyless entry is one of many things that will unexpectedly stop working.
In my first six months as an Airbnb host:

  • My towel rod broke;
  • An interior door accidentally got locked (preventing guests from accessing the property); and
  • The door to one of my bathrooms broke

If you manage your Airbnb remotely, you can’t just stop by to fix these small issues when you hear about them. Instead, call a handyman. But, like your cleaning crew, a great handyman is hard to find.

Do your best to find and meet with a handyman before your first guest arrives. Build a relationship with them, pay them promptly, and treat them kindly so they keep coming back!

#6: Not expecting things to go missing

Let’s face it–things will go missing from your Airbnb property.

For example, I used to provide two generous work-from-home setups for guests. We’re seeing a major increase in guests wanting to work remotely from their Airbnb. So, I wanted to provide my guests with an exceptional remote work setup.

But during my first property maintenance check, I found that a mouse, keyboard, and HDMI cable were all missing. (After only six months of hosting!)

My rule of thumb: don’t leave anything at your Airbnb that you wouldn’t be okay with losing.

Don’t make these 10 common property maintenance mistakes at your Airbnb. | The Realist

#7: Not investing in impactful upgrades

Investing in high-impact items goes a long way with your guests. For example, a high-quality couch and memory foam mattresses (king size, when possible!)

And renovations like a fresh coat of white paint, recessed lighting, and durable flooring make your listing stand out among the crowd.

Investing in these high-impact upgrades will wow your guests. They’ll also help your property stay in great shape. It’s yet another way to ensure you get those 5-star reviews.

Recommended: The Best Room-By-Room Airbnb Checklist: 100+ Essential Items

#8: Not leaving cleaning supplies out

Have you ever been at an Airbnb and felt frustrated that you couldn’t find the dish soap? Or accidentally spilled something and couldn’t find anything to clean it up with?

Make sure your guests have access to basic cleaning supplies. Afterall, guests who want to clean should be able to clean! Doing so will also prevent damage and unnecessary cleaning fees.

Here are some essential cleaning supplies to provide for guests: upholstery cleaner, broom and dust pan, inexpensive vacuum, glass cleaner, and all-purpose cleaner. (Get the full downloadable checklist here!)

#9: Not having enough storage

As a new Airbnb host, I’m sure you’ve thought about where you’ll store backup supplies. Between extra duvet inserts, pillows, paper towels, toilet paper….you’ll need a lot of space. But you’ve probably underestimated just how much.

I ran into this issue the first time I visited my Airbnb when I realized backup supplies were being stored in many places other than my locked supply closet, which was already stuffed to the brim.

Before your first guest arrives, make sure you have plenty of storage space. Make sure you can lock up ALL the Airbnb supplies you want your cleaning crew to have access to, but not your guests.

Recommended: 9 Surprising Lessons Learned in My First 9 Months as an Airbnb Host

#10: Not doing proactive plumbing maintenance

Last but certainly not least – do proactive plumbing maintenance! Check that nothing is leaking, all appliances are working as expected (and aren’t at the end of their life), all drains are clear, and toilets aren’t running, and so on.

It’s shocking how many plumbing issues can come up at your Airbnb. In my first year alone, my hot water heater stopped working (YIKES), all three toilets started running, and my dishwasher stopped working. Get ahead of these things by checking for any potential issues before they become noticeable to guests.


That’s it! All of the common property maintenance mistakes successful Airbnb hosts avoid. Avoiding these common mistakes makes hosting more enjoyable, helps you earn more 5-star reviews, and gets you closer to achieving Airbnb Superhost status.


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