Quick Tips When Renting Out Your Property On-Line

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With the explosion of on-line property listing services like AirBNB, many people have the dream of making lots of passive income from their vacant properties or rooms in their homes. Today, putting your property up for rent has never been easier and with these new services providing built-in marketing, customer service and payment collection services, homeowners don’t not have to do much other than supply a set of keys to their place. Or do they? Although stories of homeowners transformed into rich landlords abound, there are just as many horror stories. How do you find out the best things to do and avoid? The best advice is to seek out experts like Brian Ferdinand, COO, at Vacation Rentals, to find a winning strategy. Here are some tried and true tips to create a business for yourself and avoid disaster?

  • Take plenty of high quality photos – High quality photos are bright and highlight the unique character of your space. Feature what is special about your property and show this off with as many pictures as needed. Do you have cool artwork, fixtures and built-ins? Take a photo! Always take pictures of the bedrooms because this is often the most important room to guests. And most importantly make sure things are neat and clean. Remember, this will be your only connection to your guests, so you need to make a great impression to win their business.

  • Price it right – Make sure you set a price that fits with comparable places in your area. If you have a vacation property, remember that there will be a high season and a low season price that may vary as much as 70%. Pricing will depend a lot on your area, time of year, and what other places are renting for. Be competitive and know that you can always raise your prices once you get lots of clients. Switch things up, Summer weekends might be more expensive, Winter weekdays cheaper. Be prepared to test things to find the perfect price.

  • Make firm rules for guests – Rules are the way you ensure safety for you and your property and a great experience for your guests. Do as much vetting as you can of potential guests and if they ask for anything outside of the normal services you provide, the answer should always be a firm no. There will be guests that want to extend their stay. This is a case by case situation and you should weigh the money you will earn against the type of guest they have been during their stay.

  • Offer Added Services – Certain amenities like a cleaning service, are a great way to attract more guests. Find a way to offer these type of amenities. Food delivery and free breakfast might be the offer that makes the sale for you. How about small parting gifts? Get creative and be prepared to make their experience memorable.

  • Read Your Reviews and Respond! – The most successful hosts pay attention to the reviews of guests. Treat what you are doing like a business (it is a business) and that means, understanding things from the customer’s point of view. If you get a bad review, accept it, and quickly fix problems. When you get a great review, offer that guest a discount on future stays.

Most importantly keep yourself aware of the rental market in your community and of the laws that may determine how and to whom you may rent your property. Good luck!

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