Austin home is one of Airbnb’s most popular “one-of-a-kind” properties | KETK.com

AUSTIN (KXAN) – A self-proclaimed “Willy Wonka” home in West Austin is one of Airbnb’s most popular “one-of-a-kind” rental properties, and the company is working to increase the number of unusual homes and bizarre among its announcements.

Airbnb launched the OMG on Wednesday! Fund, a $10 million initiative to fund “100 of the craziest and most unique real estate ideas,” company officials said in a statement. Owners can submit requests for the OMG! Funds until July 22.

From there, a jury will select the 100 winners, who will each receive $100,000 to fund the creation of their dream properties.

Sam Randall, senior communications manager at Airbnb, told KXAN on Thursday that the company is seeing growing interest in people using Airbnb as an opportunity for additional revenue streams.

“Last year in Texas, Airbnb hosts with unique listings earned about $35 million, and we know people are using that revenue to help cover rising costs,” he said.

And unique properties are a growing trend in the business, with Randall saying properties attract renters as much as the destinations themselves. The Bloomhouse in West Austin is described as “part Willy Wonka, part Big Lebowski, and totally unlike anywhere else”. It’s getting close to the top of Airbnb’s OMG! listing, with a 4.89-star rating and overnight fees over $600.

And The Bloomhouse isn’t the only unique Airbnb listing attracting visitors to the Lone Star State. Other highlight properties include the “Naturalist Boudoir” in Lumberton; the silo house at Laughing Llama Farm in Troy; the Home Kettle in Galveston; the Leander Geodome; and the Treehouse in Dallas.

“I think it really shows the opportunity for people to come up with and really create their craziest ideas they might have, and the winning opportunity that comes when they’re able to make them a reality. “, said Randall. . “And that is our goal and our hope with the OMG! Funds.”

As for the reasoning behind the name of the fund? Well, Randall said that speaks for itself.

“When someone goes to the site and sees a giant UFO, just saying ‘oh my god’ is really the reaction,” he said. “And I think people will have a great time searching our site and looking at some of the very unique properties both in Texas and, really, around the world.”

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