In this week’s episode I talk to author, multiple vacation home owner, and activist, Joel Rasmussen. Joel is President and Founder of the Austin Rental Alliance, one of the largest non-profit association of vacation rentals owners in the U.S. He’s also author of Vacation Rental Success – Volume 1 – From Start to Profit. [Read more...]
I’ve been thinking a lot recently about what happens when things go wrong at a vacation rental and how easy it is to screw up all the goodwill you have created with guests by simply mis-handling the situation.
When I say ‘mishandling’ I mean not having the systems and procedures in place to manage a breakdown, or a failure in a facility or amenity. It also means understanding fully how guests feel at that moment and not projecting your own emotions or way of thinking onto them. Finally, it means not shifting responsibility onto the guests for a failure on your part to convey the information they need to operate things correctly. [Read more...]
Tyann Marcink is one very busy person. A mom to 3 boys, web designer, vacation rental owner and professional photographer, she balances a lot of activities and still had time to talk with me in episode 13 of The Vacation Rental Success Podcast. [Read more...]
You may have noticed over the past few months, the design of the website has been changing. It’s been a bit of a do-it-ourselves effort to make the blog more readable and we’ve been experimenting with different elements and design features.
It’s been a bit like trying to cut your own hair – you can see the front in the mirror, and maybe a bit of the back if you contort yourself enough, but getting it right so it looks good all over, is pretty near impossible. [Read more...]
Orlando based realtor and vacation rental specialist, Erica Muller, is a powerhouse in the Florida real estate market. Her new e-course “Everything you wish you knew about buying a vacation rental home” is a comprehensive and content packed guide for anyone considering buying a property from a distance. [Read more...]
We’re back from another great winter vacation in the sun and if you read my previous post describing what happens When the Sun Doesn’t Shine in Paradise, you’ll know there wasn’t as great deal of the sunny weather we were expecting. However, we had a great time, most of it due to the excellent accommodation and attention to detail given by the owner and her on-location staff. So much so that we are in the planning phase of buying our own property in the Bahamas…..and getting very excited about it! [Read more...]
I’ve been searching through online listings in the Bahamas recently because we are considering buying a property there and renting it out. As part of the research I was looking at rental rates, occupancy levels and reviews, to see what works for owners, and what doesn’t. This is totally unscientific and a statistician would no doubt slam my results as naïve, but it’s clear to me. When a property has great photos, a beautiful description and a ton of 5 star reviews, it also appears to be booked solid.
This is not rocket science I hear you say and of course, these are the elements of a successful listing. But still I see the majority of listings with poorly written headlines, a first paragraph telling me how many bedrooms and bathrooms the place has, and the first photo – the one that creates the thumbnail – the same as everyone else’s. [Read more...]
Many years ago we planned a vacation in the Cahors region of France – in a rental villa. It was a small place just for the two of us, but it was in a beautiful region and we were excited about exploring; eating out on terraces in old villages; relaxing by the pool at the property, and being outside the bulk of the time.
It rained incessantly for 2 weeks and only cleared up on the morning we left.
It’s over 20 years ago and I still remember how depressing it was to be stuck inside this tiny, almost windowless cottage, watching the rain lash down outside. As each day went past and the remaining vacation time we’d worked so hard for, drifted away, it was difficult to get rid of the heavy feeling of loss that none of our expectations would be met. And this from an eternal optimist. [Read more...]
When you are a far-away owner, and by that I mean an airplane ride away – not a couple of hours by car – managing a property becomes a whole lot more of a challenge. I spoke about this with Lisa Presley Sedore in episode 2 of the Vacation Rental Success Podcast (VRS002). She ‘manages’ her villa in Orlando from Ontario, Canada and is as hands-on as she can possibly be from a distance. Owner of the Thevine House on Great Exuma in the Bahamas, Montreal-based Nathalie Olivier takes an active approach to the care of her guests, and I should know since I’m her guest at the moment. It’s a tough life, but vacationing in rental homes gives me a great opportunity to explore how owners can have an impact on the guest experience even when they are thousands of miles away. [Read more...]