This is our first installment in our new “Host of the Week” series, where we showcase a Syncbnb host and his properties every week, and ask him/her a few questions about hosting and short term renting. We think it will become a valuable resource for hosts around the world, and a very interesting source for discussion and idea exchange between our hosts but also our website visitors and readers.
So, without further ado, let’s meet our first hosts: Manolis Lampros and his wife Tina from the beautiful island of Karpathos in Greece!
So, Manolis, tell us, how long have you been hosting for? How and why did you start? How many properties do you manage?
I have been hosting for a total of 5 consecutive years. At first, my wife and I renovated her beach house in Kyra Panagia, Karpathos with the intention to have a weekend getaway for the both of us. Prior to committing to this endeavor though, we came across AirBnB.com; at this point, we came to an agreement to use the beach house as a daily rental through the AirBnB platform. After 2 successful years of renting with AirBnB, we embarked on a new journey by expanding and building the Lux View Villas, 3 villas total, which are located in the neighboring village – Katodio, Karpathos. A year later, we expanded our Panagia location to add an additional apartment for rent. Also, we added a rental apartment in the capital of our island – Pigadia – for guests who long to be centrally located. In combination of our original property, our newly built villas, and add-on properties, my wife and I are currently managing a total of 6 properties and plan to add 4 additional newly built villas in 2021.
Are you an owner or a manager? Is this a part time or full time occupation for you?
I am the owner of the properties, along with my wife Stamatina. Although we work as a team, managing the properties is my wife’s full time job.
What is the best thing about hosting, and what are the biggest problems you face?
Many hosts will agree that the best part about hosting is meeting people from all around the world. We have not only had the opportunity to make such acquaintances, we’ve had the pleasure of building friendships as well. One of the biggest challenges we face as hosts is maintaining all of the properties at once. Organization is key, and throughout these years, my wife and I have been devoted to perfecting this feat. Thankfully, we are centrally located as we live about 20 minutes away from all of our properties; thus if a circumstance arises, day or night, we can quickly respond to our guests.
What is one thing you wish you knew when you started hosting?
One of the things that I wish I knew when hosting is the importance of culturally diverse guests. As I mentioned earlier, guests have stayed at our properties from across the world. With that said, it is essential to accommodate all guests and their needs. Although this was somewhat understood by us in the very beginning, the depth of this accommodation wasn’t as clear until we were well into our hosting endeavor. A top priority that Tina and I have is to make it a point to become well-versed in all guest accommodations in an effort provide the most pleasurable stays to all of our guests.
What is the most important advise/tip you would give someone interested in becoming a short term rental host?
A tip for future hosts is to be very consistent in responding to guest messages who have questions, recommendation requests, etc. it is also essential to maintain your property – guests love to arrive to a sparkly clean rental!
Besides Syncbnb, are there any tools, devices or software (eg. Remote keylocks, cameras, local guide apps, power meters, etc) you use? What is your experience with them?
Which channels do you list on? How much has your revenue increased since listing on multiple channels?
Currently, we list our rentals on Booking.com, AirBnB, Homeaway, and Trip Advisor. After adding Booking.com, we saw about a 15% increase in our revenue.
Besides listing on multiple channels, what other things can a host do to increase his/her bookings and revenue?
Other than listing on multiple channels, we use social media for advertisement and have created our own websites. We have made Instagram accounts and Facebook pages for both of our properties. We try to post a few times a week and use hashtags in order to obtain “likes” from followers who have interests in traveling. As a result of our social media platform, we have received multiple reservation requests; this in turn allows us, and our guests, to avoid unwanted booking fees.
You can find out more about Tina and Manolis’s properties here:
And here are a few photos to get you drooling (click for larger versions) 🙂