In today’s economy, you can get farther by setting up a few hustles on the side. As a business venture, you’ve probably felt impressed by the success of vacation rentals. You may know people who have invested in rental properties or who rent out their homes, condos, or entire apartments. With a saturated market, you have to be on top of your game to generate regular bookings. Here’s how you can keep your vacation rental customers happy and make a name for yourself as a host.
Focus on the Details
When you’re setting up a vacation rental, size isn’t everything. You’ll find customers in the market for every type of rental. Where you can truly stand out is in the details. While you’re shopping for toiletries, kitchen supplies, and home accessories, don’t sacrifice quality to fit a low budget. Spring for the well-known brands that your guests will love, and don’t forget more minor details such as stocking scented candles and soothing Young Living Essential Oils in the bathroom or pantry.
Stay on Top of Maintenance
Pursuing a side hustle can lead to added stress, but you have to stay on top of the maintenance of your rental property. A one-star review can tank your business, especially if it’s based on a legitimate issue such as leaky pipes, faulty air conditioning or heating, broken appliances, or insufficient safety measures. Make repairs to urgent issues as soon as someone reports them. Even if it means canceling or rescheduling in a busy month, it’s better to think of the viability of your business in the long term.
Make Hygiene a Priority
Whether you clean your rental property yourself or hire a cleaning team, hygiene should be your number one priority. Rental customers have incredibly high standards when it comes to cleanliness. As a small business owner, you have to meet and exceed the standards set by giant corporate hotel chains and other long-standing vacation rental companies.
Keep a comprehensive checklist of all the cleaning measures that need to happen between customers. Use antibacterial sprays on all furniture and double-up on sheets so that spills and stains can’t penetrate mattresses. Make sure to check all the nooks and crannies for lost items and dirt or trash that gets left behind.
Upgrade Appliances and Fixtures
If you’re in the vacation rental business for the long haul, you should make all the upgrades you can to your space. Start with affordable renovations such as light fixtures, bathroom fixtures, knobs, handles, and more. Next to a new paint job, modern and updated fixtures will help your property make a lasting impression.
As your budget permits, you should upgrade your appliances to the newest models, including things such as microwaves, coffee makers, washing machines, and eventually fridges and ovens. Customers are more likely to book rental homes and apartments that look and feel sleek and modern.
Offer Extras in Every Room
From specialty tea in the kitchen to books and games in the living room, surprise extras turn regular customers into ecstatic guests who will advocate your property to their friends and family. Here are just a few great extras you can add to your rental:
- Board games and a game console
- Books and maps on local tourism
- Beauty and grooming products and accessories
- Specialty coffee makers such as a french press and pour-over
- Interesting sauces and spices in the cupboard
- Office supplies such as pens, sticky notes, and a desk calendar
Be Responsive and Helpful
Regardless of the amazing job you’ve done on stocking your rental property with extras and taking care of all the small details, the majority of your guests’ experiences come down to you, the host. Your attitude and responsiveness will make a huge difference in whether you get repeat customers and five-star reviews.
If you’re guests make a reasonable request, try to go the extra mile when you can. This will have a huge impact, especially when you’re starting out. If you live in a different city or country from your property, you will have to be even more mindful about communication.
Setting up and maintaining a vacation rental is no small feat. If you do it right, the property can generate significant income, maybe even enough to grow your business. Success comes down to one thing: happy customers.