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Thematic analysis of short-term renter preferences for housing market in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia: A case study of Airbnb

Pui-Yee Ho, Sheau-Ting Low, Siaw-Chui Wee and Weng-Wai Choong

International Journal of Housing Markets and Analysis, 2019, vol. 13, issue 5, 825-844

Abstract: Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to propose a short-term renters’ preference profile for peer-to-peer (P2P) accommodation selection in the housing market in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The emergence of P2P accommodation was initiated by the concept of a sharing economy, allowing the peer provider to share personal properties with the peer end-users. As the housing market has become more competitive, understanding the preference profile among short-term renters is advantageous to offer a matching marketing mix to the targeted customers. Design/methodology/approach - This study uses qualitative method associated with thematic analysis. A total of 10,509 reviews on Airbnb were gathered from 377 properties in Kuala Lumpur Federal Territory from 2013 to 2017. Thematic analysis assisted by NVivo software was applied to analyse the empirical data. In total, 14 attributes were identified which could be categorised into 5Ps. The concept of 5Ps adopted from modern marketing is commonly used to categorise the strategies in the marketing process. In the current context, 5Ps is used to categorise the preference of the short-term renter in their selection of P2P accommodation including product, price, promotion, process and people. Findings - This paper has developed a preference profile for P2P accommodation selection in Malaysia’s housing market. In total, 14 attributes were identified and categorised into the 5Ps of marketing mix. The results showed that the majority of short-term renters were concerned mostly with product (73.2 per cent), followed by people (14.5 per cent), process (10.1 per cent), price (2.0 per cent) and promotion (0.2 per cent). Originality/value - This study contributes to existing literature with a novel case in Malaysia’s housing market by identifying the short-term renter’s preference in the P2P accommodation selection in the Malaysian housing market, specifically in Kuala Lumpur. The preference profile provides guidance for property owners and developers in the housing market to offer the right product in enhancing the marketability and rentability of the property.

Keywords: Thematic analysis; Sharing economy; Peer-to-peer accommodation; Malaysia housing market; Preference profile; Short-term renter (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
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