Tired of sky-high linen service costs eating into your Airbnb profits? With the right strategies, you can slash expenses and maximize savings without sacrificing quality. This comprehensive guide reveals insider tips to reduce linen costs so you can earn more from your rental property.
We spoke with experienced hosts to uncover budget-friendly tricks for minimizing linen expenses. From investing in quality linens to streamlining inventory management, we'll provide proven methods to cut costs. Implement our money-saving linen strategies and keep more rental income in your pocket.
With our expert guidance on reducing linen service costs, you can establish an efficient system that lowers outlays and boosts profits. Read on to discover actionable tips that help take the pain out of linen expenses. Soon you'll be running a lean, money-making rental business that smartly manages linen costs.
#1. Hotel-style, fast-drying, white bedding and towels are worth the investment.
Hotel-style doesn’t necessarily mean hotel price. After all, you’re not a hotel with the volume, purchasing power, or budget. So what does hotel-style mean?
Hotel-style means two things:
- Pure white fabric– This makes stains easier to treat and remove than colored options that can’t be bleached. It will keep your laundry in circulation longer AND keep your stain treatment costs down. The exception to this rule is black makeup hand towels.
- Standardized size – Keeping your inventory sizes standardized will prevent you from purchasing frequent replacements. If you have large towels for the master bath and smaller towels for the guest baths, when one is permanently damaged or lost by a guest, replacing it can be a headache. You’ll likely need to buy more than one – even if you only need one. Instead, consider standardizing your inventory to 4-6 items from room-to-room and stocking extra of these 4-6 items instead of 10-15 pieces.
- Double up on flat sheets instead of fitted sheets – While it’s not for all Airbnb hosts, stocking double flat sheets and using them as fitted sheets (by tucking under the mattress) can give you a safety net for inventory management. Instead of rushing to order with your Airbnb linen service for one fitted sheet, you’ll rest easy knowing you have a large inventory of flat sheets that can double as fitted sheets. If you are not going to double up, be sure to purchase enough inventory!
We have found that GhostSheets by GhostBed are the perfect bedding solution for hotel-style Airbnb laundry. These sheets are quick-drying and easily stain-treated, making them the perfect balance between cost-efficiency, cleaning efficiency, and guest comfort. With the oversized top sheet and a 2″ GhostGrip elastic band around the fitted sheet, everything is strong enough to both 1) stay on securely, all night long and 2) withstand laundry service treatment at every Airbnb turnover.
Just like sheets, there are many towel options. Airbnb guests want to get dry but don’t necessarily want the thickest towel on the market. Remember – hotel-style? The thinner the towel, the cheaper it is to replace and the easier it is to both treat for stains and dry properly. We recommend white, medium-thickness towels made from 100% cotton – these American Soft Linen Bath Towels are our favorites.
Laundry Service Recommendations for the Best Airbnb Sheets & Towels
Ghost Sheets, the sheet set from Ghost Bed, is a linen set that is built to last. These TENCEL® sheets are a laundry service favorite because they are easy to treat, wrinkle-resistant, and stand the tough conditions of commercial laundry cycles.
American Soft Linen Towels
The American Soft Linen Bath Towels are the perfect Airbnb towel. The hint of geometry on it’s border adds personality to the towel without adding color – allowing easy stain treatment. The ELS Combed Cotton means it’s quick drying too.
#2. Stock enough inventory so you only need to send laundry to be cleaned once every couple of Airbnb turns.
Miscommunication happens when things get complicated. If you’re operating your Airbnb rental property with just enough linens for one turn, you’re complicating the cleaning process by putting a strict timeline on yourself, your house cleaners, and your Airbnb linen service.
Having only a few linen sets means you are constantly sending your linens for cleaning. And, with most Airbnb linen services, your cleaning costs will be more expensive at lower volumes. Buying enough linens to keep your Airbnb rental stocked with clean inventory for a couple of turns will help you save money with your cleaning service, allow your house cleaners some flexibility on timing, and make sure your guests never show up to a bed without sheets on it.
#3. Keep your Airbnb laundry & linens locked away from guests.
If you’re an experienced Airbnb host, you know that your guests will open every drawer, closet, and storage bin that you have. And, if you haven’t experienced this yet, you will! This is especially true with guests staying more than one night.
If you have your extra inventory or safety stock (see above!) stored in an unlocked closet, the extra inventory WILL be used. This is most common with towels.
Lock them away in a place that only you, your house cleaning team, and your Airbnb linen service have access to.
#4. Request bleach and stain treatment.
We’ve found that Airbnb guests have a lower tolerance for stains than hotel guests. It’s backward…but it’s also true. While staying at a hotel, guests understand that hundreds if not thousands of guests have used the linens before. And, this subconsciously lowers their standards of cleanliness. However, at an Airbnb property rental, their standards seem to subconsciously increase – operating under the illusion that it’s their own private, boutique rental.
If your laundry is white – as this is what we recommend – keep it white by making sure your Airbnb laundry service knows to add bleach or whitener. Hotels use a 15% chlorine bleach – ask for that!
With this, set your laundry service preferences with some consideration for allergies. We always recommend hypoallergenic detergent (detergent without perfumes or dyes) to help protect your guests from reacting to your bedding.
#5. Know the difference between an Airbnb laundry service, a third-party provider, and a local dry cleaner.
Whatever you need – there’s an app for that. But, is that always a good thing?
While you might not care who is delivering your pizza, you should care who is doing your laundry. With the rise of middleman apps that pair you with the closest, cheapest, (insert any other superlative here) service provider, you have no idea who is picking up, cleaning, and delivering your clothes. And, this likely changes order-to-order based on how the middleman app chooses to schedule your service.
These providers even opt to send orders to individuals to wash in their homes instead of a professional company operating in a professional laundry facility like 2ULaundry does.
Here is the rundown:
- You’ll want to find an Airbnb linen service that ACTUALLY does your laundry: It takes a simple Google search. You’ll find a couple of options of app-based middleman companies that shop your laundry out to the nearest provider. These almost always cost you twice as much as going directly to the source. When deciding on an Airbnb laundry service, be sure to research or ask who is doing your laundry.
- Dry Cleaners vs. Laundry Services: There is a difference. If you thought the third-party middleman apps were expensive, dry cleaners typically cost 3-4x the price of a true laundry service. Dry cleaners specialize in high volumes of small garments. While your Airbnb laundry service focuses on small volumes of bigger garments – sheets, towels, comforters, etc. And, for the most part, dry cleaning your linens is a good way to expedite the wear and tear on them. Check both the linen care tags and your dry cleaning receipts before using a dry cleaner.
#6. Charge guests for damaged linens and remove the damaged linens for circulation.
Stains must be removed from circulation! But it doesn’t have to cost you anything. By charging your Airbnb guest for damaged linens, you don’t have to all your profits on new linens. Or even worse – cycling the stained linens through as cleaned linens for continued use by your guests.
A good Airbnb linen service will offer stain treatment AND stain management. Stain treatment is obvious but stain management isn’t always as clear. By asking your Airbnb laundry service to pack damaged or stained inventory separately from the rest of your clean linens, you’ll have 1) an easy time making sure they don’t re-enter circulation 2) you’ll have easy access to pictures of the damage to show the guests that are responsible for the damage, and 3) you’ll know exactly how many items need replacing for a restocking order.
And, if charging your guests seems like too much, be sure you at least leave yourself open to charging them by stating it in your Airbnb profile or rental welcome kit.
At 2ULaundry, we know linens. We process hundreds of pounds of sheets, towels, and more every day for Airbnb hosts. Our service can be scheduled online for fast, contactless pickup and drop-off delivery the next day. Simply create an account or touch base with our commercial team, select your treatment preferences, and leave a note for any special requests on your orders.
Ready to get started with Airbnb sheets and towel service?
2ULaundry is a premium laundry and dry-cleaning pick-up and delivery service available in Charlotte, Atlanta, Tampa, Austin, San Antonio, Houston, and Phoenix. Learn more about 2ULaundry and sign up on our website.