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Getting Ready for Tax Season

airbnb taxes tax season airbnb

April 15th. (Insert yawn and/or low grumble here)

We love to hate it. It’s the dreaded American tax day and it’s knocking on our doors! Before you know it, it will have come and gone for another year – it’s just over 4 weeks away. Are you ready?

If you haven’t filed yet (if you have, good for you, early bird!), we’ve got a few tips to help you, hopefully, get the best return or lowest payout to the good ole IRS. Check out our suggestions below.

1. Keep meticulous track of expenses.

Some folks are really good about this and don’t miss a single expense. Others of us have good intentions but are sitting on a mound of receipts for which we can’t recall any details.

Make spreadsheets your friend and track every penny you spend. If you’re just starting out, consider taking the time (or hiring someone to help) you organize your receipts into one or a series of spreadsheets.

After you file your 2018 taxes next month, get started on documenting all your expenses so far from 2019 so you’ll be ahead of the game for next year. Continue with this pattern so you’ll remove the headache altogether for next time.

2. Consider what you might be able to write off that you hadn’t thought of before.

We all think long and hard about what we can “get away with” because no one wants to pay more in taxes, really. But there may be a few things lurking in your corner that you don’t realize you can take into consideration.

Here are a few ideas:

  • If you’re renting only a room in your home, wrap a portion of your mortgage or rent payment into your annual expenses.

 

  • Any and all fees collected by Airbnb, VBRO, etc. are deductible. You’re paying them out of your earnings, yes, but those are expenses you’d otherwise have in your pocket.

 

  • Any payments you make or fees you incur for services are expenses. Turnover cleanings from your MaidThis cleaning team, the serviceman who fixed the washing machine when it broke down a few months ago, improvements you’ve made to your home or rental, an annual HVAC inspection… all of these things affect both you and your guests, so they’re free game. If it’s part of running your business and keeping your guests comfortable, add it to your expense list.

 

 

3. Be prepared to pay “self-employment” taxes.

If you’re renting out your home or a room in your home for less than 14 days a year, the IRS isn’t interested in collecting taxes on money that you’ve earned in that time. Breathe easy.

For those of us who are running a side hustle or full-fledged business with our vacation rentals, however, it’s a different story.

Regardless of whether or not you’re renting out your place or a room in your place for more than 14 days a year, first of all, keep meticulous records of check-ins and check-outs.

If you are hosting more than 14 days per year, be prepared to pay self-employment taxes, especially if you don’t have another job or means of income.

From a self-employed standpoint, a good rule of thumb is to assume you’ll need to pay about 30% of your income back towards taxes. This covers Social Security, Medicare, and other federal taxes a traditional employer would deduct for you every pay period. As a self-employed earner, that’s all on you now. A tax specialist can help you navigate the best solution for this.

To play it safe, you can cover your bases and pay… or take a chance, cross your fingers, skip it, and hope for the best.

 

Going it alone and filing on your own is certainly the most cost-effective way to file your taxes. However, the smartest move is to find a tax specialist that can help you specifically with Airbnb and vacation rental tax subtleties, like the friendly folks at Shared Economy Tax.

So, are you ready to file? Don’t worry too much and certainly don’t delay – April 15th will be here before you know it! Stay tuned to your inbox for tips on how to get organized for next year and avoid the tizzy.

 

Clean my
Vacation Rental


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  • Automated Scheduling
  • Cleaning Report with Pictures
  • Never a No-Show. Guaranteed.
Book Now

Testimonials

At first I tried to take care of all of the cleaning process myself, and it turned out to be a bigger headache than anything else. So a friend told me about MaidThis and its been fantastic. I’ve been working with my cleaners for a few months so far. I recommend you check out the service for yourself.
Brent
Airbnb Host in LA
90+

Hours
Saved

I definitely think that as a company we've been able to make more money, not only because we're saving money by using Maid This, but also because they're helping take a few of the necessary evils with doing vacation rentals off of the property managers plate.
Laura G
Airbnb Host in LA
90+

Hours
Saved

Blog

Make Your Small Space Feel Larger with These Tricks

make small space larger airbnb

 

Small rooms are great but they pose a special problem when you’re hosting guests: How do you make a space feel comfortable without being tacky or making things feel cramped?

Fear not – there are lots of ways to do it and none of it will cost a fortune. Make some simple changes and before you know it, your small Airbnb vacation rental will be all the rage among guests.

1. Repaint your walls and stick to lighter colors.

Light, fresh colors make a room literally feel like it’s breathing. If you’re lacking a lot of window space, this can help brighten your room, too.

Using light colors like white, creams, or even pale pastels can help make your rooms appear larger. This is partly because lighter colors will help reflect light rather than absorb it, like deeper or more vibrant colors.

2. Get some mirrors.

Along with helping reflect more light (and if you follow the advice above, you’ll be even further ahead of the game), mirrors help create more depth. Invest in some mirrors and try a few of these simple tricks from Apartment Therapy to help expand your space with a little bit of reflective magic.

3. Go furniture shopping.

There’s an old rule that a small space should be filled with small furniture. We say that rule is either outdated or a complete myth altogether.

Here’s why: When you fill a small room with small furniture and trinkets, it just reminds everyone that the room is small. You’re making no attempt to change that perception. And while, yes, you can argue that smaller trappings in a room make “more space,” what are you gaining other than winning an obvious argument? Not much.

Instead, choose one or two bigger “statement pieces” that will fill a room and become the focal point. Wedge an overstuffed sofa between two walls or add a large coffee table at the center of your seating area. Opt for floor-to-ceiling bookshelves (you get bonus points here because these also help the room appear taller) and fill them with both books and trinkets. The moral of this tip: Think. Big.

One more thing about furniture: Legs are your friends. Choose pieces that have exposed legs rather than covered legs. The space you see between the floor and the furniture plays another mind trick making our brains thing there’s more space than there actually is.

4. Take stock of your decor.

Look around and see what you’ve got decorating your walls and tabletops. Any trinkets that are rather small and dainty? Experts say this is a no-no.

Instead, follow “The Cantaloupe Rule” and opt to display items that are at least the size of a cantaloupe. Things smaller than this rotund melon just make the room appear smaller. (Not to mention, they’re the perfect place for dust to collect or could possibly be easier to break on accident.)

5. Invest in lamps.

Overhead lighting is so last century. Instead of making guests rely on a harsh, single light source on the ceiling, give them the option to turn on multiple lamps in a space. This will create a warmer, more inviting space that they’ll enjoy spending time in.

 

Don’t sweat it if your place is snug. Try a few of these design tips out to help you make your place appear larger than reality. Your guests will love it.

 

Clean my
Vacation Rental


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  • Automated Scheduling
  • Cleaning Report with Pictures
  • Never a No-Show. Guaranteed.
Book Now

Testimonials

At first I tried to take care of all of the cleaning process myself, and it turned out to be a bigger headache than anything else. So a friend told me about MaidThis and its been fantastic. I’ve been working with my cleaners for a few months so far. I recommend you check out the service for yourself.
Brent
Airbnb Host in LA
90+

Hours
Saved

I definitely think that as a company we've been able to make more money, not only because we're saving money by using Maid This, but also because they're helping take a few of the necessary evils with doing vacation rentals off of the property managers plate.
Laura G
Airbnb Host in LA
90+

Hours
Saved

Blog

The Search for the Best Airbnb Cleaning Service in Orange County

In today’s vacation rental market, the question of should you hire an Airbnb cleaning service has long become a moot point. The truth is, without a reliable Orange County Airbnb cleaning service, you’re going to have trouble getting the much-needed high ratings and finding future guests. Automated Airbnb cleaning saves you time, money, and effort by enabling you to arrange an ideal Airbnb turnover and cleaning.

What’s more, adding cleaning fees to your Airbnb account is easier than ever and can be done in just a couple minutes. In this blog, we’ll look at some of the cleaning concerns Airbnb hosts face, and provide suggestions on how best to deal with them.

Do guests clean Airbnb?

How to outsource Airbnb cleaning service?In a perfect world, everyone would clean up after themselves and no dirt or dust would ever be allowed to accumulate. And indeed, some guests really are like that. For the most part, however, your guests will either be professionals on a business trip to Orange County, or tourists interested in having a blast at the Knott’s Berry Farm.

Either way, they can’t or won’t concern themselves with chores such as cleaning. In fact, the majority of guests have the same expectations of Airbnb rentals as they do of hotel rooms. It’s been that way ever since the website was launched. Unless otherwise specified, they assume that the cleanliness of the vacation rental is the host’s responsibility.

What’s more, expecting your guests to clean up the place is counter-productive. It’s unlikely that they’ll be particularly motivated to spend a long time cleaning, so you’d probably still have to hire the experts later on to get it done properly.

Should I charge a cleaning fee on Airbnb?

The answer to this question depends in great part on the size and attractiveness of your rental property. If your Airbnb is a small apartment or cottage that can be fully cleaned quickly and without spending too much on cleaning supplies, then adding a cleaning fee can seem excessive to potential guests.

If, on the other hand, your vacation rental is a house or a large apartment, the costs of keeping it pristine can add up quickly. Charging a reasonable cleaning fee to cover the expenses of replacing damaged sheets and/or hiring a cleaning service can greatly improve your Airbnb’s efficiency.

Finally, how attractive is your property? If you’re renting out a luxury apartment in a popular tourist destination, your guests will likely expect to pay a cleaning fee, and may even be suspicious if there isn’t one. Carefully consider your situation before making a decision.

How to outsource Airbnb cleaning service?

How you go about automating your vacation rental cleaning depends a lot on how often it’s rented and how long your guests typically stay in it. Normally, you should have a maid service clean your place immediately after a guest checks out, but before the next guest checks in.

But what if a few weeks have passed since the last guest checked out? In that case, it’s advisable that you have the place dusted and ventilated before the next visitor arrives.

If your Airbnb is rented out for longer periods of time, it’s a good idea to have Should I charge a cleaning fee on Airbnb?the maids come by a couple times while the guests are still there to do things like replace sheets and give the property a quick vacuuming. Keeping your guests happy and comfortable is the best way to get positive reviews.

What’s the premier Orange County Airbnb cleaning service?

Are you a homeowner looking to further benefit from your property, or an individual running a successful Airbnb rental business? Whatever the case may be, Maid This can provide the dependable cleaning services you need to ensure your vacation rental is always looking and smelling its best. Schedule a cleaning today using our quick and effortless online booking form!

Clean my
Vacation Rental


single-blog-sidebar-vacation-rental
  • Automated Scheduling
  • Cleaning Report with Pictures
  • Never a No-Show. Guaranteed.
Book Now

Testimonials

At first I tried to take care of all of the cleaning process myself, and it turned out to be a bigger headache than anything else. So a friend told me about MaidThis and its been fantastic. I’ve been working with my cleaners for a few months so far. I recommend you check out the service for yourself.
Brent
Airbnb Host in LA
90+

Hours
Saved

I definitely think that as a company we've been able to make more money, not only because we're saving money by using Maid This, but also because they're helping take a few of the necessary evils with doing vacation rentals off of the property managers plate.
Laura G
Airbnb Host in LA
90+

Hours
Saved

Blog

Automating Your Airbnb Cleaning: It Doesn’t Have to be Expensive

Many Airbnb hosts make the mistake of approaching the cleaning of their rental property like they would their own home. Instead of hiring a reliable Airbnb cleaning service in Orange County they attempt to cut Airbnb cleaning costs by doing it on their own. However, Airbnb cleaning standards differ from what people who aren’t professional cleaners would consider to be “100% clean.”

The truth is, everyday Airbnb cleaning mistakes can drastically lessen your vacation rental’s attractiveness to potential guests. Outsourcing it to the pros is the way to go. Read on to learn about how to reliably automate the cleaning of your Airbnb. We will also look at the common factors that affect the costs of these services.

How to automate cleaning process: Airbnb business cleaning to the rescue

How to automate cleaning process: Airbnb businessHow you go about automating your vacation rental cleaning depends on what type of property it is, how often it’s rented, and the length of your guests’ stay. Apartments or houses that are generally rented out for a few days or less at a time should be cleaned as soon as a guest checks out.

If the property has been empty for a while, it should be re-cleaned a day before the next guest checks in, even if it has been extensively cleaned after the previous guest checked out. This way, you ensure that your next guest enters a fresh, sparkling clean place that doesn’t smell of stale air.

Finally, if the property is rented out for a prolonged period, it pays to have maids visit it every few days and give it a quick cleaning to maintain freshness. Making thorough arrangements with a dependable Airbnb cleaning service is key to making the most out of your property.

How to add cleaning service into Airbnb account?

Having cleaning fees in your Airbnb account can go a long way toward dealing with the added expenses of cleaning a vacation rental after guests depart and getting it ready for future visitors. Needless to say, this can all be set up through Airbnb itself.

Simply go to Your Listings on the Airbnb website, open the Pricing tab at the top of the page, click the Edit button next to Cleaning Fee, and enter your cleaning fee. Make sure you have saved the changes before exiting. Of course, the cleaning fee will only be added to the reservations that were made after the change was made.

Keep in mind that cleaning fees aren’t added automatically into Special Offers, and that the cleaning fee contributes to the total guest payment and host payout. It’s important to consider these things when choosing an all-inclusive price for your Airbnb property.

How much does it cost to have a vacation rental cleaned?

Short answer: it depends. Long answer: because no two homes are exactly the same, it’s impossible to pick a one-size-fits-all price for all Airbnb cleaning. Obviously, there’s the question of size. Is the rental property a small studio apartment, or a large holiday cottage in Orange County?

The bigger a place is, the more expensive it will be to clean. Furthermore, how much and what kind of furniture does it contain? Does this furniture require special cleaning methods and supplies?How to add cleaning service into Airbnb account?

Finally, what kind of cleaning service are you looking for? A deep cleaning takes a lot more time and effort than a standard one-off cleaning, so it naturally costs more. Getting in touch with your cleaning service of choice is the best way to ensure you get a correct price estimate.

The finest Airbnb cleaning service in Orange County

Here at Maid This, we strive to make sure your Airbnb property is always spotless and ready to admit future guests. You’ll be able to fully enjoy a family trip to the Disneyland California Adventure Park, feeling confident that your vacation rental will look its absolute best at all times. Besides, why go through the hassle of cleaning by yourself when you know professionals are guaranteed to deliver flawlessly? Book a cleaning with us today!

Clean my
Vacation Rental


single-blog-sidebar-vacation-rental
  • Automated Scheduling
  • Cleaning Report with Pictures
  • Never a No-Show. Guaranteed.
Book Now

Testimonials

At first I tried to take care of all of the cleaning process myself, and it turned out to be a bigger headache than anything else. So a friend told me about MaidThis and its been fantastic. I’ve been working with my cleaners for a few months so far. I recommend you check out the service for yourself.
Brent
Airbnb Host in LA
90+

Hours
Saved

I definitely think that as a company we've been able to make more money, not only because we're saving money by using Maid This, but also because they're helping take a few of the necessary evils with doing vacation rentals off of the property managers plate.
Laura G
Airbnb Host in LA
90+

Hours
Saved

Blog

Get Inspired by Marie Kondo’s “Tidying Up” on Netflix: Does Your Airbnb Need Some Attention?

inspired marie kondo konmari

When Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up (non-affiliate) book hit shelves in 2014, it did so with little pomp and circumstance. Fast forward just four years later and Kondo’s KonMari method of organizing has taken the world by storm.

While the book is wonderful (we recommend reading or listening via audiobook!), we don’t all have the time or desire to really get into the thick of Kondo’s organizing tips.

However, thanks to Netflix’s recent addition of their show, Tidying Up with Marie Kondo, we can get a bite-sized taste of the KonMari method with a favorite joy-sparking bowl full of popcorn while we privately judge the families. (Don’t worry – we all do it, don’t we? Hashtag no shame.)

Below are 3 KonMari-inspired tips for giving your space a little attention and love.

1. Take a good look around. What things in your vacation rental spark true joy for you?

You may or may not live in your Airbnb full-time but regardless, you should still take time to look through the items in your place and decide which things still bring forth a positive emotion for you.

Seeing as this exercise probably will have you sorting more through items of necessity rather than personal belongings, you may find there’s not much that particularly sways you one way or the other.

However, when you do come across something that piques your interest or brings back fond memories, set it aside.

Meanwhile, when you find things that have little or no use to your guests and that also sparks little or no joy for you, put those items in a separate pile.

2. Find a place to display pieces that have more meaning to you.

Being a great host also means creating a warm and inviting space for your guests. While you don’t want to personalize things too much, there’s still a place for things that hold some sentimental value to you.

If you have items you’d like to share with your guests – perhaps some great photos you took on your own vacation, interesting souvenirs or objects you found, or an old, favorite something, honor these things by giving them a special place in your Airbnb. Display them so both you and your guests can enjoy them.

3. Be grateful for what you have but don’t need.

A big part of the KonMari method is showing gratitude to items that no longer fulfill a purpose in your life. This may seem odd, but it’s a great practice to get into.

Tidying Up author Marie Kondo suggests taking each item you are sorting in your hands and if it no longer sparks joy, before you toss it into a pile, thank it. Sometimes, it’s good to be reminded of how much we do have as opposed to the things we feel we’re lacking. Let this exercise bring a positive energy into your vacation rental space.

 

We all can stand to gain something by sifting through our belongings – whether it be rediscovering things we truly love or identifying things that no longer serve a purpose. This spring, as you prepare for the influx of vacationer traffic, take a little time to take stock of your Airbnb place and tidy up.

 

Clean my
Vacation Rental


single-blog-sidebar-vacation-rental
  • Automated Scheduling
  • Cleaning Report with Pictures
  • Never a No-Show. Guaranteed.
Book Now

Testimonials

At first I tried to take care of all of the cleaning process myself, and it turned out to be a bigger headache than anything else. So a friend told me about MaidThis and its been fantastic. I’ve been working with my cleaners for a few months so far. I recommend you check out the service for yourself.
Brent
Airbnb Host in LA
90+

Hours
Saved

I definitely think that as a company we've been able to make more money, not only because we're saving money by using Maid This, but also because they're helping take a few of the necessary evils with doing vacation rentals off of the property managers plate.
Laura G
Airbnb Host in LA
90+

Hours
Saved