What can I do to make my space safer for guests?

In addition to following the Hospitality Standards and Responsible Hosting guidelines, please take some time to review safety measures to help keep your guests safer. Every home is different, and you should be sure to consider what your specific listing requires. These steps are a good place to start:

  • Make sure your property meets government safety regulations for your area (ex: International Building Code)
  • Have a functioning smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detector as required by your local laws
  • Provide a functioning fire extinguisher, and complete required maintenance
  • Clearly mark a fire escape route, and post a map in your home
  • Establish safe occupancy limits—your local government may have applicable regulations
  • Ensure all electrical appliances and other equipment in your home are properly and safely installed
  • Remove any hazards that might cause guests to trip or fall, or mark these areas clearly
  • Fix any exposed wires
  • Make sure stairs are safe and have railings
  • Child-proof your home, or else notify guests of potential hazards for kids
  • Make a first aid kit easily available, and provide a disaster relief kit depending on where you live
  • Make sure your home is properly ventilated and that temperature control is clearly marked and functional so guests know how to safely use the heater
  • Show guests how to lock doors or windows, and how to use your plumbing system
  • Document safe practices for using all your amenities in your House Rules
  • Go through your property regularly to make sure all safety precautions are up to date and in accordance with local safety laws and regulations 

As a host, your local knowledge helps people have amazing experiences. Find out where your guests are coming from, and make sure they’re aware of local customs and cultural differences that will make their stay more comfortable. When showing guests the hidden treasures in your neighborhood, also make sure to indicate the nearest hospital and include local emergency numbers. Provide a clear emergency contact number for yourself as well as a backup, and ensure that you and your guests have access to a spare key. Also make clear how you should be contacted if the guest has questions or issues arise. Include this information in a guidebook or in your guests’ itinerary.

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