Beyond the Basics: How to Set an Airbnb Cleaning Fee

Published: August 24, 2023
Cleaning fee image for Airbnb blog.

Airbnb hosts face many decisions when setting up their listings, but one factor that often goes overlooked is the cleaning fee. How do you determine the right amount to charge without scaring off potential guests or undercutting your profits? In this blog post, we’ll guide you through how to set an Airbnb cleaning fee that keeps your property in high demand and your guests satisfied.

Short Summary

Understanding Airbnb Cleaning Fees, analyzing competition and identifying similar listings are key to setting a competitive cleaning fee.

Time and labor costs, supplies, and amenities should be considered when determining the rate for your listing.

Regularly monitoring market conditions and adjusting pricing accordingly is essential to optimizing profitability while remaining competitive in the market.

Understanding Airbnb Cleaning Fees

Airbnb cleaning fees serve a dual purpose: They ensure the upkeep of the property while providing a comfortable experience for guests. Charging an appropriate cleaning fee is crucial for hosts, as a high fee can make short stays costly and deter potential reservation requests. At the same time, it’s important to charge enough to cover the cost of cleaning services, supplies, and any additional measures required to meet guest expectations. Guests may wonder what the Airbnb cleaning fee is for, but it’s important to remember that these fees are in place to maintain the guest satisfaction and to cover the cost of cleaning.

Service fees are another factor to consider when determining your cleaning fee. Airbnb charges these fees to both hosts and guests, which can affect the overall cost of a stay. By understanding the purpose and importance of cleaning fees, you can balance keeping your property clean and maintaining a competitive edge in the market.


Factors Influencing Average Cleaning Fee

When setting an Airbnb cleaning fee, several factors come into play. The type of listing, its size, and its location all impact what hosts can reasonably charge. For instance, larger vacation rentals with more bedrooms and space can justify a higher cleaning fee. Conversely, a small studio apartment will likely have a lower fee than a 4-bedroom villa.

To ensure you’re charging a competitive rate, it’s important to research the average cleaning fee for similar properties in your area. This will help you gauge what guests are willing to pay and keep your listing attractive to potential guests.

Analyzing Your Competition

One effective way to set a competitive cleaning fee is by analyzing your competitors’ pricing strategies. By examining nearby listings and their cleaning fees, you can gain valuable insights into what other hosts charge and what guests are willing to pay. This will enable you to adjust your pricing strategy accordingly, ensuring your listing remains competitive and profitable.

It’s also worth considering whether hiring professional cleaners is a worthwhile investment. The cost of professional cleaning services should be weighed against the time, supplies, and effort required to clean the property yourself. Ultimately, the decision to hire professional cleaners will depend on your specific situation and the demands of your property. If your looking to hire a cleaner, you might find it useful to explore the services offered by Turno.

Identifying Similar Listings

Airbnb Pricing Strategy with Guest Count Market Scanner Report.

To identify similar listings on Airbnb, start by selecting dates on your calendar and use the interactive map and search filters to find comparable listings to your property. Once you’ve identified a handful of similar listings, examine each one to evaluate its quality and read reviews for the host. This process will provide a benchmark for determining an appropriate cleaning fee for your listing.

Rankbreeze streamlines the process described by offering its Market Scanner tool, simplifying the identification of similar listings on Airbnb. The tool allows you to create a report from Airbnb search results and then presents the average cleaning fee for those listings.

Remember that charging a cleaning fee on Airbnb is a common practice, and it’s recommended that you do so if your competitors are charging one. By aligning your pricing strategy with similar listings, you can ensure your property remains competitive and attractive to potential guests.

Evaluating Competitor Pricing Strategies

Competitor Calendar in Rankbreeze software for price optimization.

Once you’ve identified similar listings and their respective pricing strategies, it’s time to evaluate how they price their cleaning fees. Take note of whether competitors charge an enhanced cleaning fee to cover the cost of additional cleaning measures, such as deep cleaning or sanitization. This information will help you understand the various pricing strategies employed by your competitors and how they may influence guest booking decisions.

After analyzing your competitors’ pricing strategies, adjust your own cleaning fee accordingly. Consider factors such as the average cleaning fee in your area and whether your property requires special cleaning measures. By staying informed and adjusting your pricing strategy as needed, you can maintain a competitive edge in the market and maximize the profitability of your listing.

Time and Labor Costs

Here’s a basic formula you can use to estimate your cleaning costs for an Airbnb property:

Cleaning Cost = (Hourly Cleaning Rate) × (Time in Hours) + (Additional Costs)

Hourly Cleaning Rate: The cost per hour for cleaning services. This rate can vary depending on your location and the expertise of the cleaners you hire.

Time in Hours: The estimated time it takes to clean your property thoroughly. This depends on the size of your property, the number of rooms, and the complexity of cleaning tasks.

Additional Costs: Any extra expenses incurred during the cleaning process, such as cleaning supplies, laundry, or specialized equipment.

It’s important to remember that the hourly rate and time estimation should be based on research or quotes from cleaning professionals in your area. Additionally, the formula can be customized to account for any unique factors related to your property or cleaning needs.

Supplies and Amenities

In addition to time and labor costs, it’s important to consider the costs of cleaning supplies and amenities provided to guests. These costs can include essential items such as toilet paper, paper towels, cleaning products, laundry services, and the time and effort required to clean the listing to guests’ standards.

The cost of supplies and amenities may vary depending on the size of your property and the number of guests staying. By factoring in these costs when determining your cleaning fee, you can ensure that your listing remains competitive while covering the expenses involved in maintaining a clean and inviting space for guests.

Setting Your Airbnb Cleaning Fee

Considering all the factors, it’s time to set your Airbnb cleaning fee. The key is to balance competitive pricing and profitability while adjusting the fee based on the length of stay. This will help attract guests looking for clean and inviting accommodation while still covering the costs of maintaining your property.

Implementing a cleaning fee that is proportionate with the duration of the typical guest booking is one way to manage guest expectations. For stays of 1 or 2 nights, offering lower cleaning fees may be worthwhile. This standard fee should apply for any longer stays. This flexible approach can help you cater to a wider range of guests while ensuring that your cleaning costs are covered.

Balancing Competitive Pricing with Profitability

When setting your cleaning fee, balancing competitive pricing with profitability is essential. This means considering what other hosts in your area are charging for similar properties while ensuring that your fee covers the costs of cleaning and maintaining your listing.

One approach is to start with a slightly lower cleaning fee than your competitors to attract more guests to your listing. However, it’s crucial not to undercut your own profits too much. Monitor your listing’s performance and adjust your cleaning fee as needed to strike the right balance between attracting guests and maintaining profitability.

Adjusting Cleaning Fee Based on Length of Stay

Adjusting your cleaning fee based on the length of stay can help encourage longer bookings while discouraging short-term stays. For example, you could charge a higher cleaning fee for stays of just one or two nights, while a lower fee could be applied for longer stays.

By varying your cleaning fee according to the length of stay, you can account for the additional cleaning required for extended visits and maximize your profits while still providing a satisfactory service to your guests. This flexible approach can help you cater to a wider range of guests and ensure that your cleaning costs are covered.

Managing Guest Expectations

Managing guest expectations is crucial when setting your cleaning fee. By setting a reasonable cleaning fee and providing clear information about what it covers, you can manage guest expectations and ensure a positive experience for all parties involved.

Implementing Cleaning Fee Strategies

Now that you better understand how to set a competitive and profitable cleaning fee, it’s time to implement the strategies discussed. By encouraging longer stays and offering discounts for extended stays, you can optimize your listing’s performance and attract the right guests to your property.

Remember to monitor the impact of your cleaning fee on your listing’s performance and adjust as necessary to stay competitive in the market. Regularly evaluating your cleaning fee and making adjustments based on market conditions and guest feedback will help ensure that your listing remains attractive and profitable in the long run.

Strategy 1: Encourage Longer Stays

Setting a higher cleaning fee can effectively encourage longer stays and discourage short-term bookings. As the cleaning fee is typically a fixed cost regardless of the length of stay, a higher fee makes short stays less cost-effective for guests.

For example, a $70 cleaning fee for a week-long booking amount to just $10 per night when the cleaning fee is divided by the number of nights, which may be more palatable for guests than a single-night stay with the same cleaning fee. By setting a higher cleaning fee, you can incentivize guests to book longer stays, which can contribute to the overall profitability of your listing. It’s important to consider the median cleaning fee in your area to ensure your pricing remains competitive.

Strategy 2: Offer Discounts for Longer Stays

Another strategy to make your listing more attractive to guests is to offer discounts for longer stays. By providing a discounted rate for extended stays, you can encourage guests to book your vacation rental for a longer period of time, which can contribute to the overall success of your listing.

Offering discounts for longer stays not only makes your listing more appealing to guests, but also helps to streamline the cleaning process. With fewer turnovers, you can save time and resources on cleaning, ultimately improving the efficiency and profitability of your property.

Updating Your Cleaning Fee

As market conditions and costs change, it’s important to update your cleaning fee accordingly.

Regularly reviewing your cleaning fee and adjusting it as necessary will help ensure that your listing remains competitive and profitable in the long run.

To update your cleaning fee, simply access your Airbnb host dashboard and make the necessary changes. Remember to consider factors such as competitor pricing, changes in cleaning costs, and guest feedback when making adjustments to your cleaning fee.

Monitoring the Impact of Your Cleaning Fee

To stay competitive in the market, it’s crucial to regularly monitor the impact of your cleaning fee on your listing’s performance. Key metrics to consider include occupancy rate, average daily rate, and revenue per available room. By comparing these metrics with those of similar listings with different cleaning fees, you can gain valuable insights into the effectiveness of your pricing strategy.

If you notice that your listing’s performance is lagging behind similar properties, consider adjusting your cleaning fee to better align with the market. By continually evaluating the impact of your cleaning fee and making adjustments as needed, you can optimize your listing’s performance and maintain a competitive edge in the market.

Rankbreeze Updated Optimization Journal

The Optimization Journal in Rankbreeze is a unique feature that enables you to experiment with changes to your listing, including adjustments to your cleaning fee.

Try Rankbreeze’s Listing Optimization platform, it equips you with the necessary tools to maintain competitiveness, fine-tune your pricing tactics, and consistently elevate the performance of your property within market insights. Make sure to explore our platform’s range of features that can further enhance your vacation rental management experience.

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I set cleaning fee on Airbnb?

Including the Airbnb cleaning fee as part of your overall booking fee is the most common advice among hosts, and it’s preferable to avoid adding it to the nightly charges due to the potentially negative impact on your bottom line.

Why is the cleaning fee so high on Airbnb?

Airbnb hosts often have higher cleaning fees than hotels due to the lack of economies of scale and inefficiency of travel between properties. This helps cover their costs for cleaning and readying their rentals before guests arrive.

How can I determine a competitive cleaning fee for my Airbnb listing?

Research the average cleaning fee for properties similar to yours in your area to determine a competitive fee, taking into account listing type, size, and location.

Consider factors such as the type of cleaning services you offer, the frequency of cleaning, and the cost of supplies. Additionally, think about the time it takes to clean the property and the cost of labor.

How can I encourage longer stays at my Airbnb property?

Encourage longer stays at your Airbnb property by setting a higher cleaning fee and offering discounts for extended stays. This will encourage customers to stay longer and benefit you as well.

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