“Honestly, it was a gamble … but I knew, if I put in the same amount of time that I did at my job, I knew I could make that much or even more through Airbnb because I saw how much it could actually grow.”
So, you’ve got a good, steady job, but it doesn’t light you up. You know you’re self-motivated enough to be an entrepreneur, and you LOVE the idea of deciding for yourself how to spend your time. You CAN achieve financial freedom through short-term rentals (STR), and today’s guest took a leap of faith to do just that.
Azubuike Dike (better known as AJ) is the Cofounder and Logistics Manager with EA Lodging, an STR property management company based in Houston. The EA Lodging team provides reliable services for property owners looking to create positive experiences for their guests, boasting a proven track record for optimizing short-term rentals in Southeast Texas. In addition, AJ and his partner, Erica, offer an array of services for hosts, including STR setup and design, listing photography, furniture sourcing, and a listing revamp—just to name a few.
On this episode of Get Paid for Your Pad, AJ joins me to share his journey from microbiologist to full-time Airbnb property manager. He explains how the Superbowl inspired his first STR listing, why he transitioned to cohosting, and where he found his first few properties to manage. AJ also discusses the automation tools he uses to manage EA Lodging, describing his role in the business and what he outsources. Listen in to understand the services AJ offers other hosts and get his advice for achieving financial freedom as an Airbnb entrepreneur!
How AJ got into Airbnb
Listed girlfriend’s apartment for SuperbowlBooked every weekend until lease ended
How AJ grew from one listing to a property management company
Rent apartment near NRG stadium specifically for AirbnbConverted to cohosting when got in trouble for listing
AJ’s transition from a 9-to-5 to entrepreneurship
Good job as microbiologist for City of HoustonSaw how quickly could achieve financial freedom with STRRequires different mindset (nobody tells you what to do)
AJ’s experience with quitting his job
Took leap of faith despite fearMotivate self on days feel down
How AJ found properties to manage
Condos for sale on CraigslistSearch Airbnb Community Forum
AJ’s current STR cohosting portfolio
10 properties in HoustonAble to sustain self comfortably
What inspired AJ to add services for other hosts
August slow month for STR in HoustonHelp others create listing, get bookings
AJ’s advice for aspiring Airbnb entrepreneurs
Know your number to live comfortablyFind your lane + follow people doing what you want to doGet educated (i.e.: market research, podcasts and classes)Reach out to people with property/room available
How AJ manages EA Lodging
Automate guest communication with Your PorterOptimize pricing for STR with PriceLabsCheck on units and touch base with owners
Connect with AJ
Airbnb Community Forum
STR Profit Academy
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