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If you’re new to the hosting business, or even if you’re already renting out a location but you want to increase the amount of bookings and revenue that you see, this is the blog for you. This guide to renting out a holiday home from the SevenStays team is full of valuable tips and advice that will help you maximise the return you see from both the business travel and traditional tourism markets. Let’s take a look!
Before you can start renting out a holiday home, there is prep work to do – a series of tasks that can make all the difference in attracting the right guests and ensuring a successful rental experience.
Firstly, when renting out a holiday home it’s important to consider the overall setup, furnishings and décor of that property. You want to create an inviting space that guests will feel comfortable and welcomed in. This might mean investing in high-quality linens, comfortable beds and furniture, and tasteful décor that reflects the feel of your local area. At the same time, guests booking a holiday cottage, loft or flat, farmhouse etc. may expect a certain look and feel – catering to that expectation can be a useful strategy for property owners to employ.
Next, don’t forget to prioritise safety standards and regulations. This might mean installing smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, ensuring working fire extinguishers, and meeting any local requirements regarding pool or outdoor area safety measures.
Finally, if there’s anything that you expect guests to do, or anything that you know you definitely don’t want happening at your property, you need to set out a clear set of ‘house rules’ detailing the do’s and don’ts, so that guests know exactly where they stand.
“Renting out a holiday home is easier if you put in the effort to set up and prepare things in advance. If you follow our tips here, you can create a welcoming and safe space that guests will be eager to visit. Plus, a clear set of house rules will help ensure a smooth rental process for everyone involved.”
Now that your holiday home is ready for guests, it’s time to start marketing and advertising it to potential renters. Remember that your goal is to catch the eye of people who are looking for a holiday rental home, so your marketing strategies should be creative, engaging, and effective.
One of the best ways to market your holiday home is to list it on vacation rental websites. These websites act as a platform to connect homeowners with potential renters. Some of the most popular vacation rental websites include Airbnb, Vrbo, Rightmove, and Zoopla.
Social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter can be powerful tools to market your holiday home too. You can share pictures and videos of your property to create excitement and interest in your rental. Hashtags can also help to boost your visibility on social media.
Paid advertising is another option to consider. You can use paid ads on search engines such as Google or Bing, or you can place an ad in a local newspaper or magazine.
Ultimately, your marketing strategy should be tailored to your target audience. Be creative and think outside the box to attract potential renters. Try to put yourself into the shoes of your ideal guest – what would they be looking for in a vacation rental? Address their concerns and desires in your marketing message.
“Remember that renting out a holiday home successfully requires marketing it well and a generous helping of persistence and experimentation. Keep track of what works and what doesn’t, and adjust your strategy accordingly. By doing so, you will make sure that your holiday home is always in demand, and you’ll create loyal guests who will rent from you again and again.”
After receiving inquiries from potential clients, the next step in renting out a holiday home is to actually start taking and processing bookings. This involves gathering necessary information, responding promptly with accurate and detailed answers, and guiding them through the booking process.
The first thing you’ll need to do is understand your own schedule and when you’re available to be a good host to the guests that book with you. If you know you’re going to be busy with other things and can’t give your rental property its fair share of attention, don’t take bookings at those times. After all, renting out a holiday home successfully is hard to do if the first thing the guests notice is how the landlord had their mind on things other than their stay.
Each rental platform has their own individual quirks and intricacies when it comes to bookings. Before renting out a holiday home you need to take the time to understand the individual foibles of all the platforms where you plan to list your property – especially if you’re planning on listing your property in multiple places at once.
It’s also smart to maintain a master calendar with details on upcoming events in your life, as well as all bookings from all the platforms you’re advertising on in one place. There’s nothing worse than double-booking over different platforms and having to turn someone away, or guests having to fend for themselves because you’re on a business trip.
It’s important to be professional, courteous, and clear in all communications to establish a positive relationship with clients. Additionally, having a system in place to keep track of inquiries and bookings can help ensure that nothing falls through the cracks and that the process runs smoothly. Good communication and organisation are key to successful inquiry and booking management.
“Ah, the crucial step in renting out a holiday home where it really becomes a business, and you eagerly await to see if you start making money back, or even better, turning a profit. That all starts with taking and honouring bookings, and if you follow our advice here, you’ll be all set to start things off on the right foot!”
One of the most important aspects of creating a memorable experience and renting out a holiday home successfully is resolving tenant issues quickly and efficiently when they occur. Whether it’s a maintenance issue with the property itself, an enquiry or request that a guest would like fulfilled, or something else entirely – making it easy for guests to get an answer, or even just to feel heard, can go a really long way.
When renting out a holiday home as a landlord, it’s crucial to have a clear protocol in place for reporting issues. Tenants should know who to reach out to and what to expect in terms of responses and response times. Likewise, actually carrying out that procedure shouldn’t be too complicated – if it is, they’re not likely to follow it.
When you’re renting out a holiday home you should also make every effort to be available to your guests. Not only does this make them feel supported but in addition it gives you and your guests a way to work together and resolve minor issues before they become a bigger problem.
Especially if you’ve just had a guest check out, you should keep a close eye on your reviews and your emails for feedback from them. The sooner that you can reply and let them know that they’ve been heard, the better it reflects on you as a host. However, that doesn’t mean that if your property is quiet, you can stop checking. Guests may be delayed in getting their feedback to you, so it can come in at any time – but you don’t want to leave them waiting for a reply.
Of course, poor feedback should be addressed as soon as possible in the interest of good customer service – but don’t forget that any piece of feedback is a chance for you to foster a good reputation with your customers. So, even if the feedback you’ve been left is positive, it’s wise to take a couple of minutes to express your gratitude, and happiness that the guest enjoyed their stay.
“Ultimately, creating a memorable rental experience comes down to making tenants feel valued and appreciated. By showing a genuine interest in their wellbeing and responding to their concerns in a timely and efficient manner, landlords can build trust and establish a positive reputation in the rental market. So, make sure to stay on top of maintenance, provide exceptional service, and be responsive to tenant needs.”
Through our short-let management services, our team can make keeping your property rent-ready and looking after your guests easier. We can take ownership of virtually any aspect of renting out a holiday home in the UK – from cleaning and stocking your property to marketing it, handling check-in and check-out, and even looking after your guests through our customer services staff. It really is a comprehensive service that can be a real benefit to the hosts using it, and the best part is that it’s all available at a reasonable cost, with no hidden fees or charges.
The SevenStays Blog is a great place to get to grips with the world of airbnb hosting, and the support that we offer. Check out our latest blogs below, or for more advice why not take a look at the entire archive?