Successfully managing an Airbnb requires a lot of preparation. From complying with local regulatory laws, to knowing what to stock for your guests, there are a lot of things to think about.
We’ve created this comprehensive Airbnb host checklist to help. We’re going over everything you need as a host to be ready to provide your guests an incredible Airbnb experience, including both an Airbnb inventory checklist, as well as a list of things you can do to better manage, streamline, and optimize your Airbnb operations.
Vacation Rental Inventory Checklist – How to Stock Your Airbnb
To put together this Airbnb inventory checklist, we’ve gone through the whole house to think of everything you might want to provide your Airbnb or other short-term rental guests.
For your convenience, we’ve included links to the products we recommend. Here are some of the factors we take into account when choosing the best Airbnb products to recommend for your vacation rental:
- Affordable / available in bulk – especially for items that are disposable or refillable, you want products that aren’t going to break the bank
- High quality – to create a positive guest experience, we recommend avoiding buying the cheapest option possible for most items
- Durable and well-made – avoid items that break easily or will fall apart after repeated use
- Easy to wash or clean – we recommend items that are machine washable, have smooth exteriors, or are otherwise easy to clean
- Eco-friendly – many guests appreciate eco-friendly products like those that are biodegradable, plastic-free, or help reduce waste
This Airbnb host checklist is meant to give you some ideas, and help you think about what kind of experience you want to offer your guests. What you choose to provide your guests is ultimately, of course, up to you.
As an Airbnb host, it can be helpful to think about the bathroom amenities you appreciate when traveling, the things you often forget, or the things you love about your own bathroom at home.
Your bathroom can make or break your guests’ overall experience, since your guests are most likely expecting to find a number of familiar items in the bathroom. Here’s our recommended Airbnb bathroom inventory checklist:
- Essential accessories
- Towels (read our post about choosing towels for your Airbnb)
- Nice-to-have amenities
- Instructional signs
For toiletries, you might consider leaving just a few of each item, rather than the full box. That way your guests won’t be tempted to go home with a free box of something.
And for towels, a common rule of thumb is to leave 1 or 2 bath towels per guest per stay. You might also consider having a closet with a few extra towels stocked.
Having a full kitchen is one of the perks that makes guests book an Airbnb over a hotel. But a kitchen with no supplies isn’t much use. Here’s a list of some items to keep in your Airbnb kitchen.
- Cookware & Bakeware
- Leftovers & Cleanup
We also wrote a whole separate post specifically on how to stock your vacation rental kitchen.
The number and size of bedrooms in your Airbnb will vary, but these are the basic items most guests expect from a vacation rental bedroom: a bed, bedding, and something to do with their clothes. Here’s our recommended Airbnb bedroom checklist:
Your Airbnb bedding is another factor that can make or break your guests’ experience. We recommend using a good mattress for your Airbnb, like the Sweet Night Twilight Hybrid Mattress, and quality pillows and sheets. Make your guests feel like they’re staying in a fancy hotel bed, and they’ll be much more likely to leave a positive review. Read our full review on the best mattress for your Airbnb.
Of course, depending on your space, the items in your living area will vary greatly. Maybe you have room for a ping pong table or foosball table. Maybe you only have room for a loveseat. Here are some basic items for the living areas in your Airbnb:
- Furniture & Decor
There are a lot of things to consider when choosing Airbnb furniture. Some of the main factors to consider are the design style of your space, price, durability, comfort, stain-resistance, and how easy it is to clean.
As for entertainment, having some games and a smart TV with subscriptions to streaming services both go a long way. There are a number of factors to consider when choosing the best TV for your Airbnb, but we recommend checking out the TCL Smart Roku TV. Read our post on the best TV for your Airbnb.
Like your indoor living areas, your outdoor space may be large or small (or non-existent). If your Airbnb has a yard, or a patio, deck, or porch, here are a few items to improve your guests’ outdoor experience.
- Furniture & Decor
- Lawn games
If you do have some outdoor space, you can greatly enhance the experience of your guests by providing some of these amenities. An enjoyable, relaxing outdoor space can help you get some really great positive reviews.
And if there are tennis courts nearby, maybe you even leave some tennis gear for your guests. You probably don’t want a tennis ball machine, but you might consider having some cheap tennis rackets and tennis balls available (or some pickleball gear, if there are pickleball courts).
Any kinds of activities you can provide or facilitate can go a long way to improving your guests’ experience.
Security & Convenience
Self check-in and free WiFi are two features many Airbnb guests have come to expect these days. In addition to these conveniences, there are other security measures you may want to take as a host, such as noise monitoring and security cameras. Here are some items that will make your Airbnb more secure and convenient for yourself and your guests.
- Free WiFi (we recommend StayFi)
- Security cameras
- Noise monitoring software
- Lockbox or smart lock (for guest self check-in)
- WiFi thermostat
- Signs for your Airbnb guests (including WiFi password sign)
If you don’t go for anything else, we definitely recommend at least providing free WiFi. This is something almost all Airbnb guests will be expecting. We recommend using StayFi, which offers reliable WiFi with the ability to collect your guests’ email address.
Additionally, using a smart lock (or at least a lockbox), is a great way to allow your guests to do self check-in. We’ve included links to our top picks for the best smart lock or lockbox for your Airbnb.
If you’re hiring a professional cleaning team to do your Airbnb turnovers, then you won’t need to stock as many cleaning supplies yourself. Here are some basic cleaning supplies that come in handy for keeping your Airbnb sparkling clean in between guests.
- Cleaning spray
- Paper towels
- Comet powdered cleanser
- Magic eraser
- Broom and dustpan
Depending on your space, you may require additional cleaning supplies. For instance, if you allow pets, you may want a lint roller or other pet-specific cleaning supplies on hand. Again, if you’re using a cleaning service, these supplies may be unnecessary.
Setting up & Managing Your Airbnb
Along with having all the necessary furniture, supplies, and amenities for your Airbnb, there is also a lot of preparation required to manage the day-to-day operations of your Airbnb.
If you’re setting up your Airbnb for the first time, check out our Starting an Airbnb Checklist for first-time hosts.
Here are a few of the things from that checklist you’ll need to do in order to prepare your Airbnb for guests.
- Confirm legal and tax requirements – you should check your local regulatory laws and codes before starting an Airbnb or vacation rental – see more from Airbnb
- Get vacation rental insurance – it’s a good idea to have your own homeshare insurance (we recommend Proper Insurance), especially if you want to have your own direct booking website for your Airbnb
- List your property – you can create an Airbnb listing, and use a channel manager to list on multiple platforms like Vrbo, Booking.com, and others
- Manage guest messages – we recommend using a software like Smartbnb (or any other Airbnb channel manager of your choosing)
- Optimize your pricing – an Airbnb pricing tool can really help you maximize your bookings and profits. We recommend Wheelhouse for most Airbnb hosts
- Get more bookings – improve your Airbnb search rankings and learn how to market your Airbnb
- Hire a cleaning/turnover service – check out these cleaning service options
Managing your Airbnb or vacation rental can be a lot of work. Fortunately, there are more and more software platforms and services popping up every day to help. Check out our list of the best vacation rental software for ideas on the kinds of software you can use to maximize profits and streamline your operations.
Do you have other advice or suggestions for this Airbnb hosting checklist? Let us know in the comments!