Success is unarguably a product of hard work, persistence and consistency. And these same things are key towards becoming a truly successful vacation rental owner.
Through the years of Owner Direct Vacation Rental’s existence, we have observed a few habits that are common among our successful vacation rental owners. We gathered the top 7 to help you attain similar success in your vacation rental.
1. Successful owners treat their vacation rentals as a business.
Successful owners don’t settle with just having their vacation rental as their second source of income and/or a way to make a deemed ‘dead investment’ profitable. They take their vacation rentals seriously. They get themselves familiar with the role of vacation rentals in the travel industry and with the competition. They have a sound marketing strategy. They set SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-bound) goals, align their efforts accordingly and work hard towards achieving them.
2. They keep their listings up to date.
Successful owners keep their calendars updated while maintaining competitive rates for 12 months into the future. They regularly check rates of the nearby competition. While you don’t have to price lowest, you should consider pricing your vacation rental in a way that your guests will most likely feel they are getting value for their money.
Successful owners update photos and toss in a few photos of the property in different seasons of the year. This is especially necessary when you made updates in your vacation rental (e.g. you’ve changed furniture or repainted walls). Get a professional photographer or read how to take beautiful photos here.
Successful owners update crucial information in the listing description and captions, making sure not to confuse or give guests outdated information (e.g. mode of transportation available, fare rates, etc.).
Here’s how to write a property description that gets bookings and catchy captions as references in updating yours.
3. They are responsive and personal in communications.
You’ve already worked hard in getting your vacation rental noticed by travelers. Don’t let them move past your listing to another. Reply right away when you receive inquiries. Set up auto responders. Include your contact number and ask them to call you for a faster transaction. And don’t forget to be as personal as possible (e.g. address them with their first names) but keep your communications brief and concise.
4. They are guest-oriented.
Successful vacation rental owners don’t just try, instead, they give their best in making their guests happy and satisfied during their stay. They try to establish rapport with their guests, encouraging them to come visit and stay with them again. They aim to have their guests include their stay as a lasting memory, together with the beautiful tourist destinations they have explored. These owners take extra effort to encourage guests to leave their properties with a 5-star rating (e.g. they share local knowledge of the region, give complimentary maps, etc.).
5. They keep their vacation rental clean and orderly.
This is absolutely necessary to your success with your vacation rental. Be clear with your staff or your on-call cleaners on the level of cleanliness you require. Don’t make them second guess how you want things to be cleaned. Point it out if you must, especially the commonly missed nooks and crannies. Give them cleaning checklists they can refer to before guests come and after they go.
6. They market wisely.
Successful owners recognize the big help a vacation rental listing company does in marketing their vacation rentals to their target audience. More importantly, they choose a reputable company in listing their vacation properties. They pick one that has values aligned with their goals like how Owner Direct is responsive and personal with guest inquiries; works closely with them in making them successful with their vacation rentals; and, complements, if not boosts, their marketing efforts. BUT they don’t leave all the marketing efforts to the listing company. They also market on social media and everywhere else possible using the best photos of their vacation rentals.
7. They continuously look for areas to improve.
Successful vacation rental owners acknowledge that they cannot do it all alone. They delegate. They team up with their staff or cleaner and plumber and treat them well. These people can very well extend to your guests how you treat them. Join forces with them in achieving your business goals.
Successful owners learn from others. They connect with other vacation rental owners and learn from their experiences.
They pay attention to guests’ feedback and suggestions. They don’t take negative feedback personally. They take them constructively and make it a point to not get the same negative feedback in the future.
There you have them all seven!
What habits do you have from this list? Where are you struggling with?
Remember, “success usually comes to those who are too busy to be looking for it,” said Henry David Thoreau. Go get yourself busy in adapting these 7 Habits of Successful Vacation Rental Owners now.