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  • Jacque

Get-On-Outta-Here!!!

Probably the biggest concern I see regarding short term rentals is BAD GUESTS.


It's interesting. Some hosts are plagued by problem people. I've heard stories that could curl your hair. Yet, other hosts that have managed their property or properties for years have NEVER had a bad experience.


What gives?


I think the first set of hosts are missing something from their listing mix. There are things you can do to avoid problems.


First of all, charge the right amount. If you have a nice home, charge for a nice home and not for a shack. Otherwise, you will get a shack guest in your nice home, and they will take care of it like a shack. It's a matter of respect.


Next, have clear house rules that are non-negotiable. A deposit needs to be attached--with the in writing, no-grey-area stipulation that if you break the rules you loose the deposit. People who aren't planning on breaking the rules don't have a problem with this. We had a deposit for one of our stops in Scotland, I looked at it as money back after the trip, which was nice when all the trip bills came in. Those with plans to break the rules will look elsewhere for a place with no deposits and no clear rules.


Also, have a minimum stay. Two or three days is great, longer for a luxury rental. Again, this weeds out the folks looking to hit it hard in a party-time way.


Now this isn't well known, but Airbnb has GUEST ratings. You know how the hosts are rated and reviewed by their guests? Well, the hosts also rate and review the guests. So, checking out the guests ratings is a must. Read the reviews, and if there is an issue, pass on the guest. Along the same lines, ask questions!! Why are they visiting? What are they up to? It helps weed out the questionable as well as helping to take care of the good guests. If you are uncomfortable, don't rent. If you know it's a honeymoon, an anniversary, a family get together, a long awaited vacation, a business trip, whatever--you can better prepare to care for those guests.


This is big! DON'T RENT TO LOCALS. Hello, why would a local be renting a home? I just heard about a truly horrible experience that someone had...and from the information given the renter had to be local. Most of the time problem guests are locals.


Finally, invest in a noise monitor. It plugs into the wall and monitors volume of noise (not actual words). If things get to loud, you get notified. If they unplug the thing, you get notified. It gives you the opportunity to be proactive if problems are starting to brew.


That being said, yes, of course there are exceptions. Last December I got a one night rental, locally, for my son and daughter-in-law. It was their first night away from their baby and I wanted a truly special place for them to enjoy. (And I got the baby for a whole day and night! Woo Hoo!) But I was asked questions...which I was happy to answer...and the happy couple was very well taken care of. And you know what, I was happy to pay for the exceptional service.


That's what we want to do at Entrepreneur Vacation Homes, Etc. The more we can care for our guests and for our clients, the happier they both will be. I think that's how our business will grow and our clients will prosper.


Oh, about the title...Where I live the neighbors are quite...opinionated. This often leads to great, open conversations and always is good for a laugh. So when I mentioned managing short term rentals a whole "discussion" got started. Those opposed listed burning down the neighborhood, tearing up the roads, harassing the wild horses, Risky Business-style happenings and interlopers being shot by neighbors as concerns. Seriously. (When you get to know the folks up here they are actually quite nice...mostly.) Anyhow, it got me thinking. Another deterrent towards bad guests could be adding as part of the property description, "If you mess up as a guest, you will be visited by our neighborhood protection team." Just a thought.



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