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Journal: How (and Why) Houst Put People First

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Last updated on
November 19, 2018

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When Airbnb launched back in 2008, no one really expected it to become the worldwide phenomenon it is today.

In his TED Talk ‘How Airbnb designs for trust’, Airbnb co-founder Joe Gebbia touches on an interesting reason for his company’s immense success:

“Most travel today is like fast food -- it's efficient and consistent, at the cost of local and authentic. What if travel were like a magnificent buffet of local experiences?”

If you’re the kind of Houst host who prefers to be hands-off, then efficiency and consistency are wonderful things. To a guest, however, it’s often those local and authentic experiences that – just as much as the reliability of your host – make their stay worth remembering.

When Houst began, we knew that we had to find ways to allow the unique personality of hosts – the essence of that ‘local and authentic’ that Gebbia talks about – to come through in their properties, even though we’re looking after them on behalf of hosts.

And here's how we do it...

1. We hire smart.

Houst will only ever be as good as the people who represent it.

As a company with interactions between many different people (guests, hosts, cleaners, linen suppliers… the list goes on) at its centre, we make sure we hire into our Guest Experience and Client Success teams based on passion, intelligence and experience.   

Pssst: We’re always on the lookout for new talented individuals to join our fast-growing team. Take a look at our jobs page to see which positions we’re currently hiring for.

2: We preserve the personality of a property.

We’re not here to provide the kind of one-size-fits-all property management that strips hosts’ properties of all the character that made them desirable in the first place. Quite the opposite, as Client Success Team Lead Rebekah Ingle explains in our recent blog post ‘9 tips to become an Airbnb superhost’:

“Guests choose to stay in an Airbnb over a hotel for the personal touches. They want to feel at home away from home, so I would recommend personalising your space (if you don’t live in the property yourself), or leaving one or two quirky decorations out (if the property is your home). Cushions, colourful blankets, funky paintings and cactuses all photograph very well and give the property that homely feeling.”

3. We value human connection.  

Our host and guest communications teams are emailing, calling and meeting people face-to-face all day, every day. This exposes them to a huge range of different perspectives and challenges, allowing us to adapt our service to meet each individual host or guest’s needs.

It also means we’re lucky enough to hear about the many positive experiences and heartwarming stories from our hosts and their guests first-hand – you can get a quick taste of these in the video above.

At Houst, this is a vision for the future that we can agree with and believe in. We’re proud to be creating happy experiences for guests so many guests (and getting great reviews for our hosts in the process)  and to work with so many inspiring hosts around the world, from Tel Aviv to Toronto.

If you’re new to Houst and are ready to join our host community, find out how much you could earn from renting your property with our price calculator at the bottom of the page.