Men and women often list a property on VRBO or Airbnb and then sit back and wait for the reservations to come. Owning a successful vacation rental requires more effort on the part of this individual. For example, the owner must manage several booking calendars and overlapping requests.
Many people find managing this property is beyond their skill set. They turn to a vacation home rental service for help with these tasks. Using a vacation rental management firm allows the owner to rent the property, generate a profit, and leave the daily operations to someone else. What should a property owner ask when making this critical choice?
Short-Term Rental Statistics
Speak with the management provider to learn more about the local market. For instance, ask about other vacation rentals in the area. How are they similar and different from your property? Learn about the going rental rate for properties in the area and seasonal trends. Finally, ask about local regulations regarding properties of this type.
The management firm should answer these questions quickly and easily. This information shows they remain involved in the market. If the firm cannot answer one or more of these questions in a timely manner, consider looking elsewhere.
Fees and Contract Terms
Management fees vary by provider and can run as little as 12 percent of the rental income or up to 50 percent. Learn what services come included in the fee. Anticipate paying more for a reputable provider with experience in drawing clients in. The right services will boost reviews and ratings while driving more revenue. Look for services such as interior design, photography, reservation management, and guest concierge.
Furthermore, review the contract terms. What happens if the company isn’t delivering on the promised services? Will there be an early termination fee? Learn when the contract can be negated without penalty and negotiate the terms. This becomes of importance as the relationship moves forward, particularly if the provider doesn’t deliver on the promised services.
Guests must know about a property before they can rent it. When the home listing goes live, the property management firm should advertise it. Learn where the company advertises and how many bookings come from each site. Ask the provider how they collect positive guest reviews, as these reviews influence reservations. Advertising plays a large role in the success of a vacation rental, so continue asking questions until you feel comfortable with the answers a provider offers.
Rental Portfolio Size
A property owner might assume a provider with a large rental portfolio remains the best option. This firm brings plenty of management experience to the partnership. However, the owner must ensure the firm has the resources to ensure every property receives the highest level of care. For instance, ask about the staff to rental property ratio. If one person oversees 100 vacation rentals, each rental receives very little attention.
Maintenance and Security
Speak with the management firm to learn who handles maintenance and security for each property. What happens when a guest needs something? Who should they call? Housekeeping services remain essential, as each guest should enter a clean property, and learn about smart features the management provider installs in the home to keep the property safe.
Using a vacation rental management provider reduces the owner’s stress. The right provider ensures key tasks are handled properly and the owner generates the desired revenue. Learn more today to see if this option is right for you.