Search Airbnb for listings in your area that are accessibility friendly. What did you find?
Many markets have very few short-term rental (STR) units that accommodate travelers with limited mobility or other special needs. And those that do definitely stand out. So, how do you design an accessible Airbnb listing?
Margie Schrader is the Superhost behind Zennia Hospitality, a STR management company out of Bloomington, Indiana, and an active member of our STR Profit Academy. Margie has maintained a remarkable 4.99 average over 188 reviews by stressing hospitality and cleanliness.
Today, Margie joins me to discuss what she is doing to accommodate differently-abled travelers with an accessibility friendly Airbnb. She explains what inspired her to design a listing with wheelchair access and how she is challenging herself to make everyone with special needs feel comfortable in the space. Listen in for insight on the marketing benefits of an accessible STR and get Margie's advice on how to stand out in your market with an accessibility friendly listing.
Margie's Airbnb journey
- Local builder asked to manage STR (May 2018)
- Now hosting five units in Bloomington, IN
Margie's experience with COVID
- Provide free stays for medical professionals
- Step up cleaning procedures, day in between
- Slow return to normal (two units back up)
What Margie's market is like right now
- Pre-COVID guests = parents of college students
- Now guests in town to see family, for getaway
What inspired Margie to create an accessibility friendly Airbnb
- Local builder gutting and renovating house nearby
- No one else in market with wheelchair accessibility
How Margie is accommodating differently-abled travelers
- Step-free access, wide doorways + hallways
- Roll-in shower, accessible height toilet/bed
- Furniture contrasts with floor (low vision)
The marketing benefits of an accessibility friendly Airbnb
- Media opportunities as only accessible STR in market
- Guests drawn to business that aligns with values
Margie's advice for aspiring Airbnb hosts
- Make sure units are super-clean
- Be yourself in interactions with guests
- Underpromise and overdeliver
- Try not to take reviews personally