House Hack Ride Along #3: New Build Townhome Airbnb in Wheat Ridge
In our third House Hack Ride Along episode, join Ben and Jeff as they tour Ben’s new build townhouse. The home has a separate studio on the first floor that he’s listing as a short-term rental on Airbnb. Learn more about Ben’s rental strategy and see the space.

Join us for the third episode of our new House Hack Ride Along Series as we tour house hacks in the Denver Metro area.  These properties will range anywhere from multifamily units, to Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) Airbnbs, and room by room rentals.  I like to call it the MTV Cribs version of local house hacks.

Two Learning Options!
  1. Watch the YouTube video (at the bottom.)
  2. Read the blog post. Note, the blog is an executive summary. Get the in-depth breakdown from the property walkthrough video.

In this episode, I’ll walk you through my second house hack in Wheat Ridge, Colorado. This property is a 3 bed/ 3.5 bath townhouse with a separate walkout studio on the first floor. The walkout studio is being rented out on Airbnb as a short-term rental: less than 30 day stays. I am living on the second and third floors with my wife and daughter.

Preston Newberry and Walker Noon helped me find and close this house hack.

Why This Is the Perfect Property for Us Right Now

The townhome was built with an income suite on the first floor with its own separate entrance–perfect for renting out on Airbnb. Also, it’s located in Wheat Ridge, which currently has very friendly short-term rental laws. These laws allow property owners to purchase a short-term rental license to rent out their property, even if the owner is not living there. 

This property is also a new build, which means little to no upfront work! This was perfect for us because when we closed on the home, my wife was 5 months pregnant. The last thing we needed was me diving into a two month remodeling project. 

The other benefit of the home is that the Airbnb is on the first level, and our bedrooms are on the third level. That means when our daughter wakes up in the middle of the night, she will not wake the guests. And vice versa: guests will not wake us up in the middle of the night with a loud TV. 

House Hack Ride Along #3: Google Maps Screenshot of House Location
Map of the home’s location
House Hack Ride Along #3: View of the main level living area
View of the main level living area

My Rental Strategy for the Property

I am renting the first floor studio out on Airbnb as a short-term rental. After we move out, we will continue renting the studio out as a short-term rental. The average income we generated in 2021 was around $2,200/month with an average occupancy >90% for the year. 

Managing Nightly Rate Pricing

The reason we were able to manage such a high occupancy rate in 2021 without fancy price management software came down to knowing our competition and where our rates needed to be in order to stay competitive. 

If you are effectively managing your pricing, your nightly rate should vary 40% throughout the whole year. For example: my weekend price in June and July will be around $120/night, and a weekday price in February will be around $75/night. 

House Hack Ride Along #3: Airbnb Listing of Property
Ben and Alyson’s Airbnb Listing

Alyson’s Experience Transitioning from HH#1 to HH#2

Transitioning from HH#1 to HH#2 was pretty stressful for Alyson due to managing all of the moving parts. We were coordinating everything from cleaning and prepping HH#1 for showings, moving all of our things, and furnishing our new Airbnb… while 5 months pregnant. 

Out of all of those things, the most stressful part came from wanting to find great tenants to move into HH#1. However, when she looks back on the situation now, Alyson says it was 100% worth it!

House Hack Ride Along #3: Photo from moving day
Moving Day

Ben’s Exit Strategy

Since we have our short-term rental license, we’ll have the ability to continue renting out the first level income suite on Airbnb. The upstairs, where I am currently living, will be turned into an unfurnished, long-term rental that will rent around $2,400/month. 

Connect with Us

Jeff and I are both House Hacking Specialists who have our own niche. Jeff focuses on long-term rentals, creative strategies like room by room, and finding value in properties that don’t appear to have it.  I focus on short- and medium-term rentals.  Reach out to us with any questions about rental strategies, finding contractors, or doing repair work yourself, reach out to us.  

Ben Einspahr

Active Local House Hacker (currently on HH#2!) and Short Term and Medium Term House Hacking Specialist

Jeff White

Active Local House Hacker (currently on HH#5!) and House Hacking Specialist

YouTube Video

House Hack Ride Along #3: New Build Townhome Airbnb in Wheat Ridge

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