At 38 years old, I should probably have a husband and some kids. However, I do not. Instead I have: a house, two dog-babies, a paid off hybrid and a (somewhat) stress-free life. I get to travel, live life and start new businesses. One day I’ll bag a boyfriend. 😉
Anyway, I busted my butt to clean up my credit. I did pretty well in online marketing and saved enough money for a down payment on my house. I am a free-spirit, love people and want to change the world. However, I live in this matrix. You know… the matrix with bills, mortgages, interest and political division, etc.
Two years ago, I decided to take my detached garage and put in a floor, drywall, insulation, television, and a bed. I listed it on Airbnb. I live in a suburb of Los Angeles. It’s not a tourist destination. I never thought anything would come of it. Boy, was I wrong. There are actually a lot of people who like the idea of a safe, cheap vacation spot (even if it is 30 minutes away from anything really worth visiting). I earned over $10,000.00 by monetizing a space that used to hold a bunch of junk.
I have hosted people from all over the world. They’ve been respectful and cool. They stay out of my hair because they are here to explore. It’s not like they want to sit in my garage for a week at a time. I have made great friends over my time hosting. I have also made great money. Please note the picture of my Airbnb stats below.
I still suggest this to all of my friends. Some are totally weird-ed out by the idea, but then they meet my guests and then they understand. As a single women, I “should” be afraid of having strangers on my property coming and going… right? However, I’m not. I only let people stay who have great reviews. Sometimes I can get a vibe from their profile alone. For example: “We are three girls, 24 years old, planning a trip for our first time to LA. Your place looks so amazing and safe and we would love to stay with you”. I really do get a gut feeling, and it has been correct 100% of the time. There are tricks I have found by trial and a couple errors, to protect myself from weirdos or unwanted issues: I don’t let single men come stay as a general rule of thumb. I don’t allow same day bookings, unless they already have a ton of great reviews (the kind of guests I like to host have been planning this trip for a while). I go with my gut. If there are any early indicators that suggest someone may be even a little questionable, I just kindly deny the stay.
I highly recommend you try hosting some travelers if:
- you like extra money
- want to pay your house off more quickly
- are struggling to make ends meet
- like meeting new people
- want to be a force for good in the world
People that travel this way are humble, sweet, considerate, respectful free-spirits. If you possess any of those attributes, this is for you. You can meet like-minded individuals, stimulate the sharing economy and still be COLD HARD CAPITALIST!