The expectations of Headwaters Hosting interns are below, please read through the topics below thoroughly and if you have any questions feel free to give us a call. If a problem should arise or you are unsure of something we are always available to lend advice to help problem solve or come up with creative solutions. We can help the intern create an appealing and engaging listing page by recommending photographers to shoot the spaces and give assistance on wording that best tells the properties story to potential guests.
What’s expected of Headwaters Hosts?
We want to give you clear guidance so you know what’s expected and can provide a 5-star stay every time you host.
We ask all Headwaters hosts to meet four basic requirements: overall rating, response rate, cancellations and acceptance of reservations. Beyond the basics, you’ll also get reviewed by guests who stay with you.
To help create comfortable, reliable stays for guests, all homes and hosts must meet four basic requirements.
Responding quickly when guests reach out shows that you’re an attentive and considerate host. How frequently and quickly you respond to reservation requests and booking inquiries is measured by your response rate. We ask hosts to respond to these types of messages within 24 hours.
Accept reservation requests
No guest likes to have to send 4 or 5 requests to find an available place so we expect that if your calendar shows you’re free, you accept most requests. Make sure your listing’s calendar reflects the days you’re able to host. This way you’re more likely to get reservation requests that you can actually accommodate. You can use your availability settings to block time off between bookings, or to prevent requests for same-day reservations or reservations too far in the future.
Avoid cancelling on guests
We take cancellations seriously and ask all hosts to avoid cancelling on guests–their travel plans depend on it! You’ll be subject to penalties, including financial penalties, if you cancel a confirmed booking. We ask that you avoid canceling confirmed bookings unless there are extenuating circumstances.
Get positive reviews
Guests like to know they can expect a consistent level of quality, no matter where they book. At the end of each stay, guests will review their experience with you, which is one of the ways we evaluate you as a host. Your overall rating is your average review score from all the guests you’ve hosted.
As a host, you’ll have an opportunity to rate guests too–on their cleanliness, courteousness, and communication. Your feedback helps us ensure that guests are treating the homes they stay in as if they were their own. Guests who are consistently flagged by hosts may be subject to penalties.
Getting great reviews from guests
We’ve found that hosts who get great reviews tend to focus on five things: cleanliness, essential amenities, accurate listing details, a smooth check-in, and proactive communication.
Guests will expect the clean and tidy space they see in your listing photos. Make sure you give yourself enough time to clean between guests, especially when you have back-to-back bookings.
Guests will have the opportunity to rate the cleanliness of your space, and the average of your ratings will appear on your listing page. If you consistently receive low cleanliness ratings, you may be subject to penalties.
Clean every room guests can access, especially bedrooms, bathrooms, and the kitchen
Check that there’s no hair, dust, or mold on surfaces and floors
Perform turnover between each stay:
Provide fresh linens/sheets and towels for guests
Clear trash, food, and leftover items from previous guests
Space out your bookings to give yourself more time to prep between guests. You can update your reservation preferences to block a night or two before reservations
Charge a cleaning fee and use the extra money to pay for cleaning supplies or hire a professional cleaning service
Leave cleaning supplies in your space so your guests can take care of spills and accidental messes
We recommend all hosts provide the essential amenities so guests have what they need to be comfortable and have a good night’s rest.
At least one towel per booked guest
At least one pillow per booked guest
Accurate listing details
Setting the right expectations before a trip can contribute to a better experience for both you and your guests. You can help travelers decide if your space meets their needs by providing clear info and must-know details like whether you allow pets. A detailed listing and profile helps attract the guests who are looking for a place just like yours.
Guests will have the opportunity to rate the accuracy of the information you provide.
Accurate and up-to-date address (this will be shared only after guest has booked)
Bedroom and bathroom privacy details are accurate
Listing photos fairly represent the condition and layout of the space
Amenities are as advertised, present and functional
Provide House Rules that address situations that will matter to your guests. Your rules can provide clarity around what you do and don’t allow, like smoking, pets, or additional visitors.
Let guests know if there are parts of the listing that are off-limits, like a garage or the attic
Be honest about unexpected factors that will impact your guests’ stay. Your guests deserve to know if your neighbors just started a noisy construction project or if they’ll have to climb 8 flights of stairs to get to your place.
List all the amenities you offer and make sure each one is available and operational
Make sure your space matches the price you set. A very high price may lead travelers to assume your listing is extra luxurious. Need help? Try looking at other listings in your area or turn on Smart Pricing.
A clear and simple check-in process will help put your guests at ease after a day of traveling. Guests will be asked to rate their check-in experience at the end of their stay.
Create a check-in guide for your listing–we’ll share it with your guests 24 hours before check-in so they have everything they need to arrive smoothly
If you plan to meet guests in person, make sure to coordinate a check-in time in advance
If you offer self check-in, add those details in the Guest resources section of your listing
Make sure your guests know how to contact you if they have a travel delay or last-minute question
Provide your guests with detailed directions for getting to your place—you can save time by putting it all in your house manual
Supporting guests during their stay
Whether or not you’re staying in the space with your guests, it’s important to remain available throughout their stay. Your guests will have the opportunity to rate the clarity and consistency of your communication at the end of their stay—and the average of these guest ratings will appear on your listing page.
Be proactive in your communication so guests know you’re available. Reach out early to coordinate arrival plans. If you won’t be greeting your guests when they arrive, you can send them a message at their check-in time to make sure everything went smoothly.
If you confirm a reservation and something about your listing changes, tell your guest in advance.
Download the Airbnb app so you can respond to messages anywhere.
If you won’t be in the area during their stay, you can give your guests a local point of contact.