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The sharing economy is quickly becoming a predominant way of life for many Americans. Ridesharing, coworking and co-living arrangements have proved to be not only acceptable, but preferred. Before the revolution of all things shared, we rigidly looked at our travel plans in terms of fixed costs and number of days we could afford to enjoy ourselves. But all that has changed. Leaders in the sharing economy like Airbnb have made it possible to have your own piece of swanky real estate to call your homestead and still travel the world as much as you want. You don’t have to sacrifice living space for travel.
“True freedom resides in being able to travel the world by becoming a digital nomad, having no boundaries or borders to abide to, while being able to live and work from anywhere in the world.” – How To Become A Digital Nomad And Travel The World, Forbes.com (@Forbes) Jan 20, 2017
Not only can you jet set around the world and have your pick of affordable Airbnb short-term rentals, but you can also recoup the cost of rent on your primary residence. Digital nomads and millennial professionals are the most savvy group of Airbnb members because they are renting out their multi-family apartments in large numbers, leaving them free to travel the world with money in their pockets to spare, or creating a source of residual income on their company’s dime. Startups like Pillow are helping make being an Airbnb-friendly building easy, and make travel a way of life instead of an added expense for residents.
10 Tenants That Benefit From Airbnb Friendly Buildings
1. Airline Pilots
Commercial airline pilots spend an average of 12 to 15 days per month in the air, not including their commute time. If they don’t have a family waiting at home, that’s a big chunk of cash wasted on an empty pad for half of every month. Since most pilots commute to work from another city, they often end up shelling out even more money on a crash pad. Many pilots are opting to sublet their apartments on sites like Airbnb in order to create an income stream using their empty apartments.
The rise of millennial culture has made flexible work arrangements –that many baby boomers and Gen Xers only dreamed about– an expectation. Millennials are also much more comfortable with freelance and contract positions than their predecessors were. Quality family time and travelling the world demand this. Many freelance writers, graphic designers, developers and community managers are using the freedom that working independently provides to work from anywhere in the world. They hop from spot to spot, Bali to Buenos Aires, savoring the local culture while still earning a living. These freelancers are often characterized as digital nomads, but many still crave their family connections (millennials are closer to their parents than previous generations), and keep a flat near their loved ones so they can pop in when they’re missing the familiarity of home. As the creators of the shared economy, they don’t waste a penny on empty living space. They sublet their apartments on Airbnb while they are away of course!
3. Travel Nurses
We’ve all heard about the shortage of nurses in the United States that has basically made it possible to pick and choose from a variety of positions at very competitive pay rates. The travel nursing sector has sprung up as a way to fill the demand for nurses in underserved or remote areas of the country. If you’re an R.N. looking for something different in your day-to-day, travel nursing could be the answer. These R.N.s typically spend on average 13 weeks away from home. Renting out their apartments for the duration of the assignment could prove to be the perfect combination of excitement and extra income.
4. Cruise Ship Employee
If sailing the high seas floats your boat, then you’ll likely spend months on the ocean cruising to your pick of exoctic locales from Playa del Carmen to the Isles of Greece. Cruise ship jobs don’t require much prior education or training, so many millennials are turning to these positions as a source of free travel. Millennials that are wise to the sharing economy refuse to leave their apartments behind unused, and are renting them out on Airbnb. Returning to extra cash after a long sea journey is a definite plus.
Today’s sales jobs don’t typically include long drives throughout the interstates of America selling vacuums door-to-door, but they do require a large amount of travel. Whether you spend a couple of days in New York making a sales pitch to clients or two weeks in Tokyo, you can rent out your apartment for nearly any length of time and turn a profit while you’re out of town.
6. Flight Attendants
Being a flight attendant has afforded many generations with the opportunity to travel the world at little to no cost. In the 1950s and 60s, airlines billed the job as a non-stop, glamour-filled adventure. And it is true, they do get to see a lot of the world; parts unknown to the average traveller. Every once in awhile, they even have time to sip a Mai Tai in the hotel bar. However, the pay isn’t spectacular and pushing that drink cart is physically demanding work! Flight attendants spend 120 very long days a year up in the air. 21st century flight attendants are choosing more and more to make their dwellings part of the shared economy. It can provide an additional source of savings or extra cash to invest in an upgraded living space.
Consulting work is an exciting field that many millennials have turned to in order to apply their often diverse skill sets. Projects can be short-term or last years. Many times, consulting work requires frequent travel since clients are not typically based in your home city. Consultants spend almost as much time on the road as flight attendants at 110 days per year, so why not capitalize on all of those amenities in your multi-family apartment building and attract a few short-term renters?
Athletes spend a lot of time away from home chasing their next win. It’s a match made in heaven for the thousands of amateur athletes that are truly playing for the love of the game and need some form of backup income to fund their dreams. Amateur coaches and trainers can also reap some monetary rewards for their hard work and dedication.
Whether it’s on the campaign trail or in session, politicians spend a lot time away from the hearth as well. The United States Congress is in session 133 days of the year. That’s a long time to leave the nest empty, so having a short-term renter can be ideal for all parties involved. State legislatures are in session for less time, but many state reps and senators are paid a penance. Politicians can serve the public without paying a hefty price tag to do so if they put their homes on the short-term rental market.
Covering breaking news in exotic locales can be a heart-pounding experience. Journalists have to go where the story is, which means they are often away from home for long stretches of time. One of the best things about Airbnb for journalists, is that you can list your property as a short-term rental the minute you get called away to your next assignment.
Whether it’s a regular gig that requires hitting the road on a weekly basis or a freelance one, Airbnb friendly buildings create benefits for everyone involved. Having the freedom to work from anywhere in the world, with minimal travel expenses, provides a better quality of life. Multifamily building owners who provide the option to residents to rent their units short-term will attract traveling professionals and others who want to participate in the sharing economy. Pillow’s multifamily partners utilize this valuable amenity in marketing efforts – it differentiates them in lead generation efforts – and their buildings outperform others. The global nature of today’s economy is swiftly moving the residential markets into the shared economy, so don’t miss out on being amongst the most cutting-edge, multi-family properties.
About the Author: Todd Conway is Co-Founder of Pillow