How a couple prepped their Leaside house for Airbnb—and how much they’re making

How a couple prepped their Leaside house for Airbnb—and how much they’re making

Paul Peterson and Meg Ryley

Real estate agent; interior designer
Airbnbing since: 2017
Rate: $925 per night
Yearly home-share earnings: $60,000
Location: Leaside

Paul and Meg moved into a four-­bedroom, seven-­bathroom modern home with their infant daughter last July. But the place often sat empty, because they’re out of town at least 15 weekends a year, spending time at family cottages in Collingwood or Muskoka.

After a few friends who crashed at their place last summer raved about the experience, Paul and Meg listed the house on Airbnb and set out to make it even more appealing. They turned the backyard into a multi-­functional rubber sports court (it’s got space for ball hockey and basketball, with nets for badminton in the summer) and installed a hot tub and gas-burning firepit on the roof—all to further entice potential renters.

Now, they’re overwhelmed with requests. They’ve started refusing rentals of fewer than five days to curb demand.

The hanging bookshelves in the living room are “always a conversation piece,” Paul says. They bought them from a shop in Reykjavik:

They put a lock on the basement storage room. They get a lot of party requests, and it’s easy to see why: in addition to the hot tub, there’s a Ping-Pong table in the basement and a beer fridge outside. Plus, there are built-in Sonos speakers in every room:

They also put locks on their baby’s closet. She’s one of the reasons they have to be particular with guests:

Here’s one of the bedrooms:

And the kitchen:

The floating bridge on the second floor gives the entranceway 25-foot ceilings:

The home’s temperature, alarms, television and lighting can all be controlled by smartphone. “We installed the system so we could keep an eye on everything remotely,” Paul says. “In case guests leave the house for a few days in the winter and accidentally turn the heat off.”

The Hunt