The Evolution of the Hospitality Industry

With new problems, comes new opportunity, an opportunity to bridge a gap, to solve problems. Airbnb started of with a concept of home-sharing, with the concept where travelers get stay together with a local in their home, to learn the local culture and to make new friends as you travel! (it was originally termed as couch surfing if I recalled correctly)

Back in 2010, Airbnb (or couch surfing) wasn’t as famous to us Malaysians as we will still pretty skeptical on staying with strangers in their house, or letting strangers stay in their houses (maybe not all, but I definitely do).

So how/when did this trend started?

At approximately 2011, there was a surge of property purchases. Property became an amazing investment model, people started buying more properties (there are a lot of foreign investors too), developers started building more! From then property prices began to almost double almost every year until 2014-2015. With properties mushrooming across the country (in fact, it seems to be happening globally), supply over demand began to occur. Property buyers now property investors, looking to rent out their properties to gain good ROI. However when there are too many choice for renters out there, 2 things happens

  1. The probability of people reaching to your property goes down
  2. People will start to bargain for lower rental price.

“Okay, so perhaps renting out might not be a good idea in this renter’s market, but we still can sell the unit ?”

Maybe. Maybe not.

It’s like choosing a boyfriend, when there are more guys than girls out there, and each guy are desperate to get the girls, they would have to up their game, have an amazing USP, or does something that can bring up the value, a reason for the girls to choose them.

So, when that happens in the property market, a new opportunity came up, a new business model, a new way to bring good ROI to property investors, a new trend. Property agents, investors and owners began tapping into Airbnb to turn their homes into homestays.

Turning your property into an Airbnb unit, personally decorating, opening up for travelers to stay in your property definitely became the new sexy.

Airbnb literally became a new term for Short Stay (which actually comprises of hotels too. While the term Homestay means Kampung Stay in Malaysia, an initiative by MOTAC).

Homestay malaysia logo

What’s happening today ?

With new market, comes more opportunities and revenue for so many people! Until it began to become saturated. It commercialized. It’s no longer a personal thing, it became a business. Home decorations design and furniture become standardized, it sort of lost it’s uniqueness.

Just imagine when some random guy have an amazing hairstyle, then tomorrow everyone has the same hair style. Is it still amazing ?

More problem began to arise, guest destroying units, price war, new form of scams, residents complaining, building management headache from the pressure coming from JMB, so on and so forth.

Here are a few example of what happened to others, and MIGHT happen to you (let’s hope not)

  1. Guest trashed house in Malaysia leaving host with damages worth RM50,000.00
  2. Mum’s horror at mess left by nightmare Airbnb guest

*no worries, we’ve got you covered.

Sounds crazy ?

So what’ll happen next ?

So here’s the thing, in every new thing -> there will be crazy hype -> bad things will then happen -> and then as it matures, it will then stabilize and prosper if done correctly. (you’ll only get the beautiful rainbow after the storm right ?)

Now that we are at the stage of bad things happening (along with all the hoohaa and confusion), so what can we do to ensure that it is done correctly ?

Here are a few things that could help

1. Hosts should stick together 

Talk to each other, share resources, set standards, compete with service quality rather than prices!

2. If you want to make this as a business, then treat it as a proper business 

Learn the traits, position yourself properly, build your USP, build your brand, build your team.

3. Join a community

Here’s where you can learn from the big players, share experiences, share resources, go for classes, at least have a group of people to support you.

4. Make use of proper tools

This is definitely the key thing that we can help! Build your SOP, automate your operations, ease your business. (by the way, do let us know what do you really need to help you)

So what’s next? This year there are a lot of news, conferences, and meetings with the Government bodies. During Malaysia’s 1st Short Stay Summit, organized by HostAStay, there were great news saying that the Government is seriously looking into regulating the industry (read the news here). So highly likely we’ll hear proper announcement on what’s next.

Let us know what do think. Subscribe to our page to get more insights and other news!

by
Jayden Lee

HostPlatform GM