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How to Become an Airbnb Superhost: A Guide for New Hosts

Jun 25, 2020 by Tara Mastroeni

Airbnb superhosts are considered the best of the best when it comes to those in the Airbnb community. Not only do they provide the best service, but they're also given exclusive perks like increased visibility, which leads to more bookings.

If you're thinking about trying to become an Airbnb superhost, we've created a guide for you below. Read it over to learn what a superhost is, how the process of becoming a superhost works, and what you need to do in order to achieve that status as soon as possible

What is an Airbnb superhost?

According to the Airbnb community, those who make it into the superhost program are "experienced hosts who provide a shining example for other hosts and extraordinary experiences for their guests."

While the wording of their definition may be a bit over the top, Airbnb superhosts are essentially the best hosts that the program has to offer. They offer outstanding hospitality to guests during their stay and, in return, Airbnb provides them with some exclusive rewards.

What rewards can you earn as an Airbnb superhost?

Aside from the pleasure of knowing you've provided excellent service for each and every reservation you've received, there are a few exclusive rewards that you can earn by becoming a superhost. They are as follows:

Increased visibility

The first benefit of being an Airbnb superhost is increased visibility. Airbnb promises to prominently feature its superhosts in search results and emails, in addition to other marketing efforts. Notably, the site also gives users a chance to define their searches by "superhosts only," which definitely increases the chances that your listing will be seen by potential guests.

In addition, Airbnb also promises that superhost properties are given a badge, which is displayed on their listing page in order to inform Airbnb guests of their qualifications.

Increased earnings

Though Airbnb does not publicize statistics on how much more a host can expect to earn by qualifying for the superhost program, one can assume the increased earnings they promise come from that increased visibility. Often, more visibility will lead to higher occupancy rates, which will increase revenue.

Extra rewards

In particular, Airbnb offers two unique rewards to its superhosts. First, superhosts get a boost when it comes to referral bonuses. Airbnb pays a referral bonus to hosts that recommend the service to their family and friends. Superhosts get an extra 20% on top of the usual referral bonus.

Additionally, if you can maintain your superhost status for at least a year, you'll receive a $100 travel credit.

What criteria do you have to meet to become an Airbnb superhost?

Now that you know what benefits come with being an Airbnb superhost, it's important to take a closer look at what the requirements are to become one of these top-tier hosts. There are a few different superhost requirements you must meet in order to be given this distinction. They are as follows:

  1. Host at least 10 reservations in a 12-month period or at least 3 reservations that total at least 100 nights.
  2. Maintain at least a 90% response rate.
  3. Maintain a cancellation rate of 1% or lower.
  4. Maintain at least a 4.8 (out of 5) overall rating for the past year, based on guest reviews.

How to qualify for the superhost program

You don't need to apply -- or really do anything other than provide extraordinary experiences in order to reach superhost status. Rather, Airbnb automatically conducts quarterly assessments of all its hosts in order to see which ones are meeting the superhost requirements.

Each superhost assessment takes place on the following dates: Jan. 1, April 1, July 1, and Oct. 1. On each of these days, the data from the last quarter is analyzed and, where appropriate, superhost status is either given or taken away.

Four tips on how to become an Airbnb superhost

1. Host at least 10 bookings a year

This one is the easy one. If you're committed to becoming a superhost, make sure you leave enough room in your schedule to take on at least 10 bookings within a 365-day span.

However, if you're in the market for fewer guests who book longer-term renovations, Airbnb does make an exception. You can also become a superhost if you host at least three bookings where the stays collectively total 100 nights.

2. Don't cancel any bookings

Part of being a superhost is consistently delivering on your word. In light of that, Airbnb has a pretty strict policy regarding superhost cancellations. Superhosts must have a less than 1% cancellation rate, which works out to mean that you have the ability to cancel no more than one night per every 100 reservations.

That said, in the event that some serious and unforeseen complication arises that renders you unable to complete the booking, Airbnb does have an extenuating circumstances policy. It covers events such as death, unexpected illness or injury, and unforeseen maintenance.

If you need to cancel a reservation and it falls under the extenuating circumstances policy, your best course of action is to contact Airbnb to file a claim. Keep in mind that claims have to be filed within 14 days of cancellation and that you may be asked to provide documentation for your reasons behind the cancellation.

3. Be responsive and communicative

Airbnb superhosts are also expected to be responsive to their guests. In fact, they're expected to maintain a response rate of 90% or higher, which means that in order to meet this criterion, you need to respond to at least 90% of the messages you receive within 24 hours of when they were originally sent.

One way to make this task easier is to keep the Airbnb app on your phone, so you can easily respond to messages as soon as you receive them. However, if you're afraid you won't have enough time to answer all your inquiries, you could also think about using an autoresponder like Smartbnb to respond to messages quickly or hiring someone else to manage your bookings.

4. Get good reviews

Lastly, in order to become an Airbnb superhost, you need to consistently receive five-star reviews from your guests. While there's a lot of different advice out there on how to ensure you're given five stars, these key points stand out: make sure your listing description actually matches the product so you can accurately manage expectations, deliver exactly what you say you'll deliver (and in some cases over-delivering), and keep the place clean and well-maintained.

Another key is gently asking guests to leave a review. While you shouldn't pressure them to lie about their Airbnb experience, you can simply write them a note shortly after their stay, explaining that good reviews are greatly appreciated.

The bottom line

Becoming an Airbnb superhost can feel like a daunting task. However, with a little hard work and a commitment to providing excellent service, it can be done. Plus, taking the opportunity to do so may have a positive effect on the number of bookings you receive, as well as on your wallet.

If you're thinking about taking the leap to become a superhost, use the tips above to help you get started on your journey.

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