Estimates are that renters will tell at least 10 people about their stay in a vacation rental, and much higher if the property did not meet reasonable expectations. Now, with the international review sites such as Yelp and TripAdvisor, the word is out Globally in a matter of minutes. The difference between merely supplying a condo as opposed to really caring that your renters will enjoy their surroundings, can mean only a one time stay OR their desire to come back to the hosts that year after year make their vacations memorable. This article is only a guide and the following are some tips based on the observations and experiences of one Realtor. The goal: lucrative rentals for owners as a result of repeat happy rental guests.
1. Provide an immaculate unit-a unit that looks "clean to the eye" like it would be when living in it is simply not enough. When it shines from top to bottom as if guests were entering a 5 star hotel, that just received maid service is what your guests expect.
2. Modern conveniences-flat screen TVs, all in one printers, gourmet single serve coffee makers, Nutri Ninjas or similar, leave lasting impressions and are items often requested for their home away from home.
3. Linens- White towels and linens are preferred because hot water (and possibly bleach depending on the towel weave) can be used. If towels are stained or towels frayed on the edges it is time to replace these. Also here in the states, it is standard for wash cloths to be provided. I have heard from overseas owners that they bring a personal loofah with them, but guests in the states expect "washcloths". This is pretty standard.
4. Service contracts on appliances from a reputable company can mean that guests are not inconvenienced or losing too much of their vacation time. Instead they should be able to call someone for relatively quick service.
5. Furniture should be in perfect condition and have an inviting appearance free of stains.
6. Putting together a book of menus or great places to visit are well received by guests new to the area. Sure they can use their computer and usually do, but if there are places one would particularly recommend, it really shows that owners are going the extra mile to welcome their renters.
7. Inventory lists prevent confusion of renters accidently packing items that were included in the unit on their departure.
8. If they mention a special occasion, a bottle of wine or sparkling cider is welcomed. Many times owners are not local so a Starbuck or Dunkin Donuts card placed in the mail with a thank you for renting our condo to welcome them is also very gracious.
9. Keeping in contact with renters over the months before their arrival is a nice gesture, maybe to share an upcoming event that will be going on when they are present or a new restaurant in town that has just opened.
10. Making sure someone is there to greet them with keys etc. when they arrive and can give them a tour to familiarize them with the property adds to the comfort of unfamiliar surroundings. This could be a be a friend or if rented by a Realtor, then they should be present.
11 .The pantry and refrigerator should be cleaned out from the previous owner. Leaving food and condiments for renters is not usually welcomed. Once again its expected the unit will be as pristine as a top notch hotel room.
12. A locked closet or cabinet for owner's belongings can be used as long as sufficient space is allotted for the guests.