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NSW gets lion's share of Airbnb hoard

Seven of the top 10 Airbnb hosts in Australia are in NSW with the highest earner in Sydney raking in $5.3 million a year across 247 properties.

New figures show the top earner in Australia was an unnamed host or property management company in Sydney booking $5.3 million in the 12 months to October 2017.

The Sydney "host" was making an average of $21,000 per property, well above the average earning of a Sydney host at $11,150 per listing each year.

Earners in Sydney make well above the median country income of about $4920.

NSW has more than 40,000 Airbnb listings - with 25,000 in Sydney alone - but is yet to pass specific laws governing holiday lettings. Instead, they're left to local councils to regulate.

Among the top seven earners were two - one in Wingecarribee and another in Wyong - each pulling in $4 million across portfolios of 97 and 168 properties.

A host near Byron Bay took in $3.7 million across 40 properties.

The figures came from AirDNA - an analytics company that crunches the numbers based on data from Airbnb's website.

Sydney Airbnb host Noa Peer has happily let out two modest properties for years on Airbnb for between $116 and $160 a night.

She is shocked a fellow operator in Sydney is earning $5.3 million annually.

"I'm not sure how that's evening happening to be honest - how do they own that many properties."

She was initially drawn to the personalised approach of the accommodation website and is surprised it's increasingly being used by property management companies.

"I think it's a reflection of the wealth distribution in Australia - but that's a bigger problem than just Airbnb" Ms Peer said.

AirDNA chief executive Scott Shatford says Airbnb is increasingly becoming the domain of property management companies, despite starting out as a platform for individuals to share a spare room, apartment or house.

But Airbnb Australia manager Sam McDonagh insists two-thirds of listings are still people sharing the home they live in.

He says property managers are generally managing people's homes and taking some of the work out of being a host by, for example, providing linen and cleaning services.

Mr McDonagh told AAP that ultimately "market dynamics" would determine the success or failure of big operators.

"We're ambivalent in terms of whether someone has one property or five properties - if they're a great host and they're serving the community then we're supportive of that."


Topics: Banking

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