How to Own and Operate a Successful Vacation Rental Business
Have you always wanted to start your own vacation rental business, or are you looking to improve your current vacation rental business in 2021? Look no further. We’re going to cover everything you need to know to take your vacation rental to the next level!
The vacation rental industry is in a period of unprecedented growth. Your vacation rental business should be, too! In 2019, the U.S. vacation rental market showed revenue of more than $17 billion! Industry experts predict that by 2023, revenue could grow to early $19.5 billion. Shouldn’t some of that revenue be rolling your way??
Working in the short-term-rental industry means our team stays at rentals around the world. Along the way, we’ve picked up on some clever tricks from hosts that made their property memorable for all the right reasons. Today we’re sharing them with you.
- Treat Your Vacation Rental like a Hotel.
- Include a Welcome Book for your Guests.
- Invest in Smart Home Technology for your Properties.
- Keep Towels Clean with this Simple Trick.
- Consider Allowing Pets in Your Vacation Rental.
- Showcase Your Outdoor Space to Increase Bookings.
- Include Luxury Items in Your Vacation Listing.
1. Treat Your Vacation Rental like a Hotel.
Research has found that vacation rentals are becoming more popular to travelers than ordinary hotels. That doesn’t mean that we, as hosts, still can’t learn a lot from the way hotels operate. A study by HomeAway (now Vrbo) and the University of Texas found that travelers are 73 percent more likely to remember their trip if they feel happy and excited about it during the planning stages, before the trip ever starts. So it’s all about offering your guests a great experience.
Start by sending them a welcome message, and include a guide with recommendations for restaurants and things to do in the area. Nine out of 10 times, guests staying at short-term rentals want to experience life as a local.
Who doesn’t love a nice welcome present? This is the part where you can get creative. You might want to leave your guests a local specialty like a bottle of wine, some snacks, or even a little souvenir to remind them of their wonderful stay at your property. It’s a small gesture, but it will make a massive difference to your guests and might even help you to get that 5-star review.
2. Include a Welcome Book for your Guests.
Ever thought about creating a welcome book for your guests? Your welcome book will serve as a guide for your guests during their stay. It will inform the guests of the house rules and everything that’s available to them during their stay.
Does your property have a few quirks? You’re not alone. Every property does! Let your guests know where the hard-to-find light switches are, which remote is the one that actually turns on the television, and info about that one burner on the stove that gets way too hot. And remember, while most of these things are common knowledge to you, your guests will have no idea. They can get frustrated when searching to find the answers. Make it as easy as possible for them. Your welcome book is the perfect place for descriptions, instructions, pictures, and all the rules your guests should follow during their stay. Just make sure to keep it short, fun, organized and easy to read.
3. Invest in Smart Home Technology for your Properties.
Haven’t jumped on the smart-home train yet? Well, it’s about time that you do so! Smart-home technology devices are a MUST for every vacation rental owner in 2021. Not only are they adding more value to your property (highly appreciated by your guests), but they serve as a protection for your property, to make managing a vacation rental business so much easier.
Smart locks are a simple way to make your guests’ life a breeze. They are revolutionizing how property managers and homeowners keep their guests happy. No one has to worry about losing a key again. With smart locks, all our guests have to do is look at their phones and type in the provided key. It’s that effortless!
Ever considered using noise monitoring at your property? NoiseAware’s noise monitoring sensors allow you to have an insight into the well-being of your property without interfering with your guests’ privacy. If your guests end up being too loud, NoiseAware allows you to step in from wherever you are, and ensure the safety of your property as well as your community. Learn more about smart-home technology here.
4. Keep Towels Clean with this Simple Trick.
This might seem like a random tip to you, but doesn’t every host struggle with the same problem? Of course, everyone loves white towels. They look fresh, clean, and add that hotel vibe to our vacation rentals. But sadly, most of the time, our nice white towels won’t stay white super long. It only takes one guest to wash their makeup off with your pristine towel to ruin it completely.
Ever wondered how to keep your washcloths clean and makeup-free from guests washing their faces? It’s something you wished you thought of before all of the trips to the store for replacement towels! The answer: black washcloths. Monogram them with “MakeUp” to ensure your guests reach for the black towels instead of your white ones.
5. Consider Allowing Pets in Your Vacation Rental.
Who doesn’t love to travel with their pets? Pet-friendly vacation rentals are on the rise. According to Booking.com, 42% of pet owners around the world would choose their accommodation based on whether or not they could bring their pets.
As vacation rentals typically offer more space than a simple hotel room, it makes them far more desirable for pet owners looking for a place to stay. So why not change your rules and allow pets at your property? While allowing pets at your property might mean more work for you, just think about all of the new bookings you will get. If you are nervous that someone is going to bring a pack of animals, set a limit on the number of pets and their weight limit, to make you feel more comfortable. Some hosts even ask for a picture of the pets before the stay, so they have an idea of what type of pet will be at their property.
6. Showcase Your Outdoor Space to Increase Bookings.
An increasing number of travelers are opting for health-focused vacations. A report by the Global Wellness Institute found that wellness tourism is now a booming $639-billion market. You want to highlight things that will help people relax and rejuvenate when staying at your property!
Have a pool or a hot tub in your backyard? Make sure to showcase it on all of the booking platforms you use! Create a little wellness oasis in your backyard that guests will love and never want to leave. Make sure to get some high-quality outdoor furniture that offers enough space for everyone to sit or lay by the pool. You also want to provide nice pool towels and consider having an outdoor kitchen area where they can grill food without leaving the relaxing space you have created.
7. Include Luxury Items in Your Vacation Listing.
Don’t we all love to experience a little more luxury when we’re on vacation? Spending a little more money upfront to invest in a few luxury amenities for your guests will make a huge difference. Don’t worry, we don’t want you to break your bank account but here are a few suggestions on items you might want to consider getting for your vacation rental:
- Nespresso coffee machines
- Ninja or VitaMix blenders
- Tempurpedic mattresses
- Stainless steel range stoves, refrigerators, dishwashers and microwaves
Having all of these products in your rental will not only increase your bookings but will give your guests the best vacation experience they can get.
These were our top 7 tips to improve your vacation rental business in 2021! What are you waiting for? Let’s go ahead and turn your vacation rental into a place that guests won’t want to ever leave. Here’s to a great 2021, more bookings, and happy guests!