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Introducing InHouse, The Platform Built to Empower Independent Hosts

June 27,2023 | Published by Jono Schafler

"A culinary masterpiece awaits: A sleek and contemporary kitchen where the tantalizing aroma of freshly baked bread fills the air, ready to delight and impress guests with a warm and welcoming embrace."


It's never been more difficult to succeed as an independent short-term rental host. Soaring inventory, inflated costs, and dependence on the major booking platforms have made it more expensive, time-consuming and, frankly, frustrating to launch and operate a short-term rental than ever before. Among the challenge an independent host faces today are:

  • Swelling inventory: U.S. Airbnb listings jumped 23% from February to August 2022. For independents, competing against rapidly multiplying listings with less capital is daunting. AirDNA data shows occupancy down up to 10% in impacted markets.
  • Rising costs: The median mortgage payment climbed 30% in 2022 per Redfin, while furnishings rose 15% according to CPI data. With less cash flow and financing options, independents are disproportionately exposed.
  • Platform dependence: With Airbnb and VRBO driving over 80% of bookings in the short-term rental industry, most independent hosts are completely dependent on these platforms - and their opaque search algorithms - to support their income. When Airbnb or VRBO make changes to how they rank listings, independent hosts are left in the dark, scrambling to compete with large property groups who use expensive software to optimize their search visibility. 

While these market challenges make operating short-term rentals more difficult across the board, independents feel the pinch most acutely. Without professional teams and abundant resources, each new challenge compounds, slowly squeezing independents out of the market. By contrast, large property management groups enjoy inherent advantages independents lack:

  • Economies of scale - Bulk purchasing power means lower operating costs
  • Dedicated staff - Entire teams manage listings, allowing rapid refreshment to chase algorithms
  • Sophisticated data & revenue tools - Teams use advanced tech and analytics inaccessible to independents.
  • Financing - Easy access to capital for renovations/upgrades. Independents often rely on Airbnb income for mortgage payments.

This systemic imbalance places independent hosts at a competitive disadvantage, and industry data suggest that the short-term rental market is increasingly becoming dominated by large, regionally focused property management groups with hundreds, if not thousands of short-term rental properties.


Introducing InHouse

InHouse is a platform that gives independent hosts access to the same tools and cost efficiencies that drive the success of large property management groups. We tilt the scales back in favor of the individual hosts who built the short-term rental community.

Here’s how:

  • We give independent hosts access to the same discounts that larger property groups get. We’ve built a marketplace that has over 100,000 products commonly used to furnish and operate short-term rentals. InHouse partners directly with brands to offer host-only discounts of up to 70% off retail prices, meaning the prices you find on InHouse match or beat the bulk pricing that large property groups can get 
  • We suggest products that help optimize your property for Airbnb’s search algorithm. Using a combination of data analysis and artificial intelligence, our Smartlists tool analyzes your listing and generate custom recommendations that help make your property stand out from the competition. 
  • We enable a new revenue stream with upsells and rentals, to help you defray rising costs. We created a beautiful, easy-to-install guest portal that allows you to offer upsells and rentals to your hosts. 

In essence, InHouse serves as an equalizer, providing independents access to the same tools and cost efficiencies that allow property management groups to thrive. 

"InHouse tilts the scales back in favor of the individual hosts who built the short-term rental community."

The rental landscape may seem designed to consolidate power into the hands of a few larger players. But InHouse aims to prove that by arming independent with powerful technology and data-backed insights, the playing field can be leveled once again

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