Uslan has lived in his flat in Hoxton for eight years, and spends his days patrolling the local area with his camera, looking for interesting things to snap. Listing his place on Airbnb gives him the time and cash to visit friends in Europe. Considering a stay? Better sharpen up those reflexes – Uslan has a retro games console and insists guests chalk up a score on his leaderboard.
What are the main benefits for you of hosting on Airbnb?
‘Obviously the money is beneficial, but having someone in my apartment when I'm away is comforting from a security point of view too, particularly if you live on your own. At times you almost think of it as a house sitter.’
How has the experience of hosting compared to your expectations?
‘How quickly bookings can come in was a touch unexpected – I've had multiple requests come in overnight and I feel really bad turning people down. Generally though, given I've frequently been a guest prior to hosting I was pretty prepared in the first place.’
What types of support are available for hosts on Airbnb?
‘The fact there's a human element to Airbnb is great – there's always a support line and community of people to help with any issues. It's not faceless – there are plenty of host community events and chances to interact with one another on an individual basis.’
In what ways has hosting on Airbnb changed your relationship with your local community?
‘Discovering the community of other hosts that exists in my local area and the good work that they do has been an eye-opener. Airbnb has a bunch of great community initiatives that they organise themselves too, which aren't just for hosts but also for social good in the context of the wider community.’
Uslan’s local picks
‘Victoria Miro Gallery is nearby, free and always has fantastic contemporary art exhibitions. Yayoi Kusama and Grayson Perry are a couple of their artists, so you're talking about some truly amazing work.’
16 Wharf Road, N1 7RW
‘Rotorino is a great local restaurant. Always look out for the specials on the board!’
434 Kingsland Road, E8 4AA
‘Regents Canal runs through some great neighbourhoods. Walk along, get off at a bridge to explore – rinse and repeat!’