Airbnb to maintain Japanese properties for owners

Kyodo

U.S. online vacation home-rental service Airbnb Inc. will start maintaining private properties for tourist stays in Japan, sources said.

Airbnb and similar firms are trying to tap into the country’s growing minpaku (private lodging services) market, following the rise in the number of foreign visitors. Under its business plan, the firm will provide furniture, buy insurance policies and clean up properties on behalf of the owners, the sources said Monday.

The move is in line with other companies trying to secure such properties before the enactment in June of a law that will set rules for private home-rental services.

E-commerce company Rakuten Inc. said in November that it will start offering the service of maintaining minpaku properties in addition to brokering such accommodations.

Airbnb will begin receiving inquiries from homeowners starting this month, the sources said.