We recently looked at making the most of other people being on holidays, by house sitting and saving money on rent.

But if you are the one who is off on some kind of jet-setting junket, you may not know that there are also ways you can offset your frivolous holiday spending.

Imagine returning from a trip having burnt through copious amounts of your hard earned savings, only to find a great big wad of cash on your kitchen table.

Sounds ridiculous, but pretty good at the same time right?

Well, cash on the table might be unrealistic, but you can have the equivalent waiting in a bank account, if you sign up to list your home as a holiday rental.

You can do this through online companies that offer secure payment, insurance and all administration.

Users, both potential guests and also providers of accommodation, must register and have their identification verified.

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As the host, the good thing is that guests understand that it “is what it is”…as in, they know they are not paying for a five star hotel with 24 hour room service.

They are paying much less than they would for one of those, so they get what they pay for.

You can essentially make your property as presentable as you like, as long as you are upfront with any shortcomings such as lack of wardrobe space or presence of clutter/mess when you list.

Of course, the fact all reviews are there for everyone to see is a pretty good incentive to keep the place in shape, but technically, you just need to provide basic furnishings and clean your property between guests.

Benefits for guests include good locations and use of appliances, for a cheaper price than a hotel.

Of course, the idea of complete strangers sleeping (and potentially doing other things) in your bed and using your home like their own will not appeal to everyone; and you are required to give guests privacy.

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Also, there have been some horror stories where out-of-control parties have been held on the premises and caused damage or injury…and even worse cases where freelancers have hired places to conduct a day or week’s worth of the “world’s oldest profession”…but these are rare and hotels have their horror stories too.

If you are comfortable with a little bit of risk for good potential reward, go ahead and list.

You can holiday in some nice places for a pretty reasonable net price and, as of yet, the government is yet to spoil the party by imposing restrictions or extra taxes.

Tim McIntyre is the senior real estate reporter for the Daily Telegraph and news.com.au

Over the past decade, he has attained widespread knowledge of Australia’s many unique property markets and is an authority on all things buying, selling and investing.

His commentary appears every Saturday in the Daily Telegraph Real Estate lift out, as well as online at news.com.au

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