There are many supplies we have to provide as a host such as Toilet Paper, Hand Soap, Shampoo, Bady Wash, Lotion, Coffee filter, Scouring Pads, Paper Towel, Dishwashing Detergent, Trash bags, Laundry Detergent... And even more if you are a plus host, such as Coffee and tea, half-half-creamer...
I am having a headache to manage the supplies especially when I have several properties. When I found some supplies ran out during a turnover, I have to buy them as fast as possible before the next guest checking in. Sometimes the guest rent for a few weeks, they may compain like "there is no enough toilet paper", or "the laundry detergent almost empty"...
So I want to hear from other hosts about how to manage the supplies? Do you store many supplies in your properties? How often do you suppliment them? Do you track the numbers of your supplies in your properties?
Do you use any software to manage the supplies?
@Yoyo3 It would be a bit spoiled and entitled to expect the homeowner to come out of their schedule to resupply something unreasonable. These people are adults paying a discounted rate vs booking a hotel and I suppose sometimes they need a little reminding. Just be clear to set these expectations in your listing and during the booking process so they are not entitiled. As a host, don't work harder, work smarter 🙂
Whatever items that are non-perishables that you can just buy in stock with coupons, do so. Since you are managing multiple properties, maybe you can have a dedicated trunk space in your car or a large basket with some of these essential items to grab with you during your turnovers. You could also just keep extras stored at the properties locked away and when you are turning over just note what you need to resupply. If you are always keeping extra stock, then you are never running out or needing to run to the store last minute. I don't see the need for a system or software like you mentioned but then again maybe you I am not feeling it to be a burden how you are. Maybe you can keep track in excel and see if there's a trend per x days and anticipate how much supplies you need for a given reservation.
For long term tenants, just state that you only supply enough of toliet paper, paper towels, etc for the first week or two weeks.
As for perishables like coffee creamer, maybe consider switching to the powder kind as it's more manageable to buy ahead of time or just don't have it at all. Yes the regular creamer is better but I mean come on, it's a luxury provided and you can't really expect it. I've stayed as a guest at Airbnbs where they only provided k-cups and sugar and if I was dying for creamer, I just acted like an adult and went to the store like anyone else would.
For laundry detergent just buy those detergent tide pods and state you only are supplying enough for x amount of washes or days. I don't allow guest to use laundry at my airbnb but I suppose if someone were staying one weekend/week then I would provide 1 pod which enough for one wash and if someone where staying two weeks or longer than I would provide that accordingly. This also ensures guests are not over using your laundry machines and driving up your utility bill. I suppose they could always just go buy more detergent and still overuse your laundry machines but hey if they can do that, they can go buy more toliet paper and creamer as well 😉
That's ture, I should make my policy more clear to the clients about how many supplies I can provide during their stay and let them know that the supplies in the stock are not for their use, so don't just take by themselves...
@Yoyo3, we host remotely and thus rely on our cleaning staff to keep things stocked and notify me when supplies are running low. We keep quite a large amount of extra supplies in our locked supply closet and they just notify me when they are running low, at which point I visit and deliver the necessary supplies. So far, I've never encountered a problem but I only have one property, whereas it sounds as if you have several.
Yes, I have several properties, and I send the cleaner a list to remind them check the supplies, but this is an extra work for cleaners so they are tend to ignor this work, moreover I am using part time cleaners, a lot of work to train new cleaners to read the stock form.
I too supply many complimentary items but I also have a large printed and framed notice just inside the kitchen of my home stating that
"complimentary items are exactly that . If you require more of these items then you shall have to purchase your own and sufficient to last for your stay"
THUS: I never have an issue and I keep sufficient locked in a supply cupboard to restock between guests, NEVER during guests stay.
Good topic @Yoyo3.
How do you presently do this? Do you find you have a cycle of what you restock or do you do it when each product is running low?
It would be great to hear how others do this.
Yeah, I can also think those two ways to manage the supplies,
1. one is find out the refill cycle, then just add each supplies regularly no matter how many still remaining in the stock. The good thing for this is easy to manage, since shipping costs a lot, but the supplies are usually cheap. So better just add all together anyway and throw the old ones if too many in stock.
2. second is keep tracking the stock number, and add the items when running low. The advantage for this way is we won't waste, but managing the supply system consume a lot of time.
I also want to hear any suggestions, how do other hosts do to manage the supplies?
We have our cleaners let us know when they arrive if they need anything, or if for the next cleaning, and then have them delivered through Instacart. I'd like to have it a little more organized and less expensive, but at least it is getting done without me having to go over there.
I keep a locked cabinet with supplies. My cleaners let me know when things are running low so I can replenish them before we're out. That keeps us stocked for regular switch-overs between guests.
I tried using the Amazon "Dash" buttons to re-order supplies but found the prices varied too much for my taste. For the convenience it might be worth your while to pay a little extra, though.
The other part of your question touches on how you deal with supplies over a guest's stay and you'll need to decide your own philosophy on this. Some hosts just supply an initial amount and tell guests to buy their own when they've run out. Other hosts want guests to have everything they need for their whole visit....
In general, luxury listings and short-term stays (<7 days) might expect all supplies are included while budget and long term might expect to buy more of their own.
In earlier discussions around this topic, hosts also considered what will happen if the item were unsupplied. One host said they'll always supply ample TP because that was far cheaper than fixing plumbing issues when people get creative. Some of their guests clogged the system by using paper towels after the "starter" supply of loo paper was gone.
how you manage to make sure all the items you have at home ( like blenders, mixers, pots, infusers, etc..you got my point) and those small things remain there between check in and check outs? are you using just a spreadsheet with inventory or any good app you can suggest me?
Thanks a lot