3. Have a Plan for the Off-Season
Research what seasonal events, festivals, and attractions there are in the area that are likely to bring in guests. You'll also want to think about hosting 30-to-90-day rentals, and marketing your place towards people who want to rent for that length of time.
Another great way to make the most of the off-season is to use this time to make improvements to your property. Renovations, proactive maintenance, and decor/furniture updates can significantly boost the value of your rental and allow you to set higher nightly rates.
4. Constantly Optimize Your Pricing
You should be assessing your rates at least once a week. Look up comparable properties to observe their pricing and availability. If the demand is there, increase rates on the weekends and lower them on weekdays. Know which local events, attractions, and holidays will allow you to charge a premium rate. You'll also want to pay close attention to the commissions and fees charged by the differing booking sites you use.
5. Minimize Damages
There are a lot of ways to do this. Number one is to always charge a deposit. You want to host guests who have respect for your home. A renter who has a problem with paying a refundable deposit is likely not someone you want staying in your place.
Inspect your property frequently to detect issues before they arise. Pick stain-resistant furniture. Put fabric covers on your couches and chairs. Store breakable items out of reach of children. Include a strict no partying policy in your rental agreement. Vet potential renters by reading other hosts' reviews. It is inevitable that things will break and messes will be made, but doing all of the above helps to keep those accidents in check, and to make sure you're covered when they do happen.