I manage 134 Airbnb rentals. Here's how I use the 'rent-to-rent' strategy to earn a passive income without having to buy property.

Ryan Luke used the rental arbitrage, or rent-to-rent strategy, to scale his Airbnb portfolio faster. This story is available exclusively to Insider subscribers. Become an Insider and start reading now.

Ryan Luke used a lease-option deal to get a property he could rent out in March 2019.

Having not found a tenant, he put the rental on Airbnb – within days he made thousands in bookings.

Luke now runs his Airbnb business full time and has 134 properties across the UK and Dubai.

This as-told-to essay is based on a transcribed conversation with Ryan Luke, a 37-year-old property investor from Newcastle, England. It has been edited for length and clarity.

I worked at my wife’s family business, a chain of garages, for nine years as a sales manager. I kept meaning to set up a pension in my 20s, then in my 30s. Once I got to my mid-30s, I started to worry.

I wanted to break into property to start building a pension fund.

I started looking for properties that would be good deals to sell. The plan was to make enough money sourcing deals to invest in my own property to rent for passive income.I found a property owner who had gone into mortgage arrears and no longer wanted to manage her property. I made a lease-option deal with her.This meant I was renting with the option to buy the property in five years and I was responsible for maintenance. This gave me the freedom to make refurbishments and sublet for a higher price. I had only £3,000 ($4050) to invest The deal cost me £238 a month to take over the mortgage and £250 in legal fees. This was in March 2019. I then refurbished the house for £2,000 and spent £1,500 on a credit card for […]

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