247: How To Shortcut Your Financial Freedom with Short-Term Rentals ($15k a Month, Part-Time)

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Note: Click here to download Zeona’s top tips for Airbnb success from this episode.

Zeona McIntyre is earning $12-18k a month through her portfolio of vacation rental properties and her “co-hosting” service for other property owners.

All this has afforded Zeona financial independence at a very young age, as she built her operation largely by piggybacking on the growing popularity of Airbnb (get $40 off your first trip!).

She first became aware of Airbnb and the potential to earn some extra revenue back in 2011. She was in massage school at the time, but a friend of hers in New York subletted his apartment on Airbnb to the tune of $50k for the year — all while traveling full-time.

“I couldn’t ignore it from then; I started right away,” Zeona said.

She started by subletting a room in her apartment, then her whole apartment, and now owns five rental properties and manages or “co-hosts” another 15-20 properties on the behalf of her clients.

With a small team, some smart decisions, and some online tools, Zeona now manages her business from her home in Boulder, Colorado relatively hands-off.

This is the second episode in our recurring revenue series this month. If you missed last week, be sure to check out how a full-time cop built a subscription box service to $15k a month.

This week, tune in to hear how Zeona chooses vacation rental properties, how she calculates the potential ROI, and how you can get started in this location independent side hustle today with just a spare room in your home.

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Click here to download Zeona’s top tips for Airbnb success from this episode.

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  • How Zeona first found out about Airbnb.
  • How she went from renting out a spare room to buying vacation rental properties.
  • What “Co-hosting” means in the Airbnb industry, and how it can earn you “synthetic equity.”
  • Why she stopped buying properties and is now building up her maintenance and management business.
  • The metrics Zeona looks at when choosing a property to use as a vacation rental.
  • How her Airbnb rentals are returning a 20% ROI.
  • How to estimate the prospective rental value of a property across the whole year.
  • How she manages properties location independently.
  • Zeona’s #1 tip for Side Hustle Nation.


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3 thoughts on “247: How To Shortcut Your Financial Freedom with Short-Term Rentals ($15k a Month, Part-Time)”

  1. I’ve been toying with the idea of doing short term rentals but it would have to be long distance since NYC real estate is too expensive. Zeona mentioned about possible markets in the South and Midwest and it seemed like she was going to mention certain locations but didn’t get to it…would love to know where she thinks would be a good location?! Surprised that the St. Louis market does so well and great point that having a plan B (long term rental) is a good idea. Also great to hear that it’s possible to do it long distance. I have one out of state rental (long term) in Kansas City so I’d be interested in picking up another property in the Midwest or South and try it out.

  2. One thing to keep in mind if you are managing property for someone / taking rent for someone else is that you may need a real estate sales persons license. That’s the case in MN at least and I would assume elsewhere. Just something to keep in mind here.

  3. I feel like I just listened to my life story for the past 8 years. I am currently co-hosting 15 properties in Lafayette, Louisiana. I was #200 on Jaspers podcast “Get Paid for your Pad”. I learned about airbnb in 2011 and started co-hosting before airbnb had a co-hosting platform.


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