10 Mistakes First Time Vacation Rental Owners Fall Prey To

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A lot of time and effort goes into creating a good vacation rental business. While you may be considering things you ought to do to make your business a success.


Here we discuss 10 of the most common mistakes made and how you can avoid them.


1. Confirming a booking without a rental agreement

Making a booking without having a rental agreement drawn up can cause a lot of confusion. A perfectly thought-out rental agreement takes into account check-in and check-out times, pet policy, period of the rental and occupancy limits.

This keeps you and your guests tension-free and at peace. There are fewer misunderstandings caused. For instance, in case of a dispute, you can simply go back to the terms and conditions put down in the agreement and come to a decision.

2. Delivering room keys to your guests via mail

It is a strict no-no to send keys through the mail. Technology has progressed a great deal making the use of keys altogether futile. Touchpad locks act as a savior and also help you avoid any uncertainty.

This reduces the chances of any unauthorized person finding them and entering your room. It also does away with the hassle of keeping the keys in a place where your guests find them easily.

3. Laying down impractical rental rates

It is essential to know your numbers and understand where you stand in the face of your competitors. Ask yourself what are the occupancy rates for a year and how do your rental rates compare with the vacation rental market? According to this, you can price your vacation rental. Remember, potential guests can choose from a myriad of options so they will naturally go for the best bargain.

4. Not remembering to ask for a good review

As a vacation rental host, maintaining your reputation needs to be key. You can do this by obtaining great reviews from your guests. This helps you build a favorable impression of your property.

Some owners are shy when asking for a review. As a result, they end up with no reviews or bad ones, particularly if something goes wrong. Asking for a review helps you rectify any issues and build your success.

5. Not keeping it real and factual

Failure in meeting expectations is what puts guests off your vacation rental property. Set realistic expectations so that guests are not disappointed with the service or vacation rental. Accurately describe your property in your listing. Refrain from using superfluous and untrue words just to make your advertisement sound more appealing. Be honest and use adjectives appropriately.

6. Advertising bad and poor photos

A majority of vacation rental decisions are made by looking at photos of a property. For this reason alone, you shouldn’t settle for less than professional, high-quality images. Your camera phones cannot compare to professional lenses and photo editing software. People pay attention to what looks appealing to their eyes so make sure you advertise your property rental with quality pictures on display.

7. Making use of free vacation rental listings

Listing your property for free saves you money but it does not guarantee reputable guests. After all, meticulous and responsible guests make their bookings through trustworthy rental property websites only. You cannot build a good reputation with free rental websites because many of them do not offer ratings or reviews. Well put out listings that are easy to navigate and have scope for optimization, works to help you rent well.

8. Not putting in effort to stay unique

Being bland in your choices and options, when putting down a listing, does not work when you want potential guests to check in with your vacation rental. It can be something as small as altering your email responder template to a more personal one. Put in your individual personality to the listing in a friendly yet professional style. This enhances the chances of your correspondence and inquiries turning into potential guests.

9. Not viewing your potential guests thoroughly

Having your own set of guidelines and restrictions, when selecting guests for your vacation rental, is equally important. As a host, you want to stay away from guests who act like a bunch of rowdy teenagers. Communicate with your guests in a thorough way and make all of your rules clear.

10. Listing your property with every possible site

There are many listing sites available but that does not mean you enroll with every single one of them. Think carefully before signing up for one and see that you can link back to your website. Every time your business information changes, for instance, transformations in amenities, photos, and cost, require you to change the details mentioned in every listing you have registered for too.

Making sure you avoid these mistakes surely helps you establish a thriving and reputable vacation rental. These precautions do not guarantee complete customer satisfaction but each is a lesson that helps in the all-round growth and position of your vacation rental property.

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Read 3 Comments »

  • Jane says:

    May 31, 2018 at 4:39 pm

    I think that now we are not paying huge annual subscriptions to TA and the like, we should sign up with everybody and pay the commission to whichever one works the hardest to display your listing and find us a booking.

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  • Jane2 says:

    May 31, 2018 at 4:42 pm

    Competitive nightly rates are getting more and more difficult when one has to pay firstly a commission to the advertising site, a second one to a management agency plus cleaning and laundry. Airbnb think we should accept one night?

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  • Rick Bond says:

    June 15, 2018 at 7:20 am

    Three more easily made mistakes..
    1. Failure to invite past guests to return – maybe with an ‘approved guest’ discount.
    2. Having a poor quality rarely updated website
    3. Submitting an angry, defensive response to a negative review online

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