How to Turn Your Home or Condo Into a Vacation Rental
edits by:Tenantwiz, Maluniu, BR, Hockeyhamster (see all)
Determine if your Property is a suitable Vacation Rental - While there are many vacation rentals on the market today, it certainly helps if your property has unique features. It is important to determine whether or not your property is marketable and desirable. You should ask yourself the following questions: Is my property in a frequented geographic area? Is my property's location desirable (i.e. on the water, great views, or close to landmarks such as theme parks, etc.). Is my property up-to-date enough and have the amenities that many travelers are looking for such as high-speed internet, jacuzzi tubs, etc.
Prepare the Interior & Exterior of your Property for Rental - Once you've determined that your property is a suitable vacation rental, it's time to make sure that both the interior and exterior of your property are up to snuff for travelers. When people travel and rent vacation homes or condos, the general rule of thumb is to make sure that everything works, nothing is broken and that the property in its entirety is very presentable
Locate a Good House Keeping Service - If you've made the decision to rent your property as a vacation rental, it's a very good idea to locate a good house cleaning service or maid that can clean the property for you once your guests depart. Of course, you could do this on your own, however, if your bookings begin to rise in frequency, most owners tend to want to outsource the cleaning of their property.
Create a System for Providing a Key or Entry Instructions to Guests - If you are going to rent your property as a vacation rental, you will need to somehow provide a key to your guests. Most property owners generally tend to setup a lockbox on their property which can be purchased at your local hardware store. Other property owners use property agents to provide the key or simply meet the guests at the property themselves to walk through the property and provide entry instructions, keys, and other property details
Provide Instructions for your Guests upon Arrival - With every property, there are certain things that you will want your vacation rental guests to know about upon entering such as how to use certain electronic components, where to place trash, whether or not to recycle, where extra linens and towels are located, what the rules of the neighborhood are (i.e. loud music, parties, etc.), and other elements. It's important to provide them with a set of instructions that they can clearly follow so that the experience is an enjoyable for not only yourself but for your guests as well.
Take high Quality Pictures of the Property and Surrounding Area - It's extremely important to take high quality photos of the property and to archive them in digital format on your computer or other digital media disc. Photos speak volumes for your property and will make the difference between a successful vacation rental property and unsuccessful one. In addition, staging the property properly is an added plus to give people the sense of what they could be doing in your property. You should take photos with a camera that is at least 5 megapixels. If you can't get a high quality digital camera, you should hire a professional photographer to take the photos. This will be well worth it in the long run.
Prepare a Description of the Property, Amenities, nearby Activities and Bedroom/Room Layout - It's very critical to provide potential guests with accurate information regarding your property. You'll need to put together a descriptive paragraph or two regarding the property, a list of the amenities & activites, and room/bed layout. You'll use this information in marketing your property on various Websites throughout the Internet.
Decide whether or not you Wish to Utilize a Rental Agent or Property Managment Company - You can still 'do-it-yourself' and also utilize rental agents and property management companies as well to rent your vacation rental. You'll need to make sure that you keep an updated list of your own rental dates if you're renting the property
Purchase Vacation Rental Software to Assist with the Management of your Vacation Rental Property - While we all want to think we can do everything ourselves, sometimes we may take on more than we can chew. It's important to find a good vacation rental software system that you can utilize to assist you with booking and managing your vacation rental property or properties
Begin Marketing your Property and Booking Reservations - Now that all the leg work is done, you can actually begin to market & book your own property. The process is actually rather simple and straightforward. There are several sites that have been created to assist you with this and ads range from $199/year to $399/year and up depending on which Website you utilize