Buying a vacation home is an exciting reward for all of your hard work. If you are only able to enjoy it a few times a year, many property owners have found renting to be a great investment. There are many financial benefits to be gained from renting out your vacation home—that is, if you’re smart about it.
Here are five mistakes you won’t want to make when you rent out your vacation home.
1. Not thinking about it like a business
Renting out your vacation home is not something you should take lightly. When you get started, failing to think about things from a business perspective can be detrimental. How much thought have you given to the listing price for renting? Are you positive that renting will ensure that you’re breaking even? And how are you treating your customers? Have you considered the benefits of a long-term customer? These are all questions you should ask yourself when you rent your vacation home.
2. Presenting misleading expectations
If you’re listing your vacation home online, it’s best to be completely honest about the condition of it. Be picky about the language you use in your rental listing. The quickest way to get bad reviews on a vacation rental is to make your second home out to a luxury when it isn’t. If your vacation home feels like your actual home, don’t make it seem like it’s a resort. If people will see photos of your family on every wall, be upfront and honest—your guests will appreciate it.
3. Forgetting about maintenance
Can you think of anything more annoying than having to stress out about a broken refrigerator while you’re on vacation? If you’re renting out your vacation home, treat it like you’ll have to use it. Many renters invest in routine maintenance with an appliance protection plan so that the pressure is off of their shoulders. Just remember, it only takes one bad experience for the word to spread about your vacation home. Keeping up with repairs will reap a big financial reward in the long run.
4. Giving vague instructions about the home
When you’re giving your guests information about the home, make sure to give more detail than you think is necessary. It’s easy to overlook something when it’s second nature to you, but the little details are actually important for someone who has never been there before. Many rentals don’t do this which can be an annoyance that leads to bad reviews and non-returning guests. Perhaps give an all-inclusive welcome guide for your guests, both electronically and at the house. This can be where you list out anything someone might want to know while vacationing—information ranging from how to turn the TV on to your favorite local restaurants.
5. Failing to inform neighbors
If you have neighbors who live in the neighborhood full-time, it’s common courtesy to let them know your plans of renting out the house. If they see strangers in your driveway, they could get concerned. Communicating with those who live in the neighborhood is a great way to ensure that everyone is informed and will prevent any unnecessary worry. You also will have someone to keep an eye out in case your guests are causing problems.
Written by: Emma Cook
Emma Cook is a recent graduate and freelance writer taking time to explore her interests and expand her writing portfolio. She enjoys writing practical pieces on personal finance and the home.
1/29/2020 11:32:54 am
please Call me 305 281 3596. Need
4/1/2020 11:01:18 am
Ha, buy a warentee is the worst possible advice.
4/1/2020 11:13:24 am
Before telling any neighbors you are going to rent I would suggest you apply and get approved for any state, county or local licenses required to rent the property
9/1/2021 11:26:10 am
I agree that someone should not sell their vacation home as a resort if it feels like a normal home. I want to stay at a place that has a ton of amenities. That would help me vacation feel even more like one.
12/15/2021 10:59:30 am
I will be sure to find a rental that is honest. I would be furious if I got a place that lied. So I will do my research.
1/17/2023 12:43:24 am
Thank you for pointing out that many renters purchase an appliance protection plan to cover routine maintenance. My sister expressed a desire to take a vacation. I'll advise her to look for holiday rentals that include an appliance protection package.
2/14/2023 12:52:40 pm
It was interesting to know that routine maintenance is essential for vacation homes. My friend should know this since he is opting for a timeshare rental. I should advise him to make sure he can turn his unused timeshare into cash.
2/15/2023 09:29:14 am
It's great that you elaborated that you should provide care that would benefit a tenant in the long-term benefits. After moving to our current area, my wife wanted to have our properties rented for a consistent extra income. She asked if I had any idea what would be the best option for managing the property. Thank you for the tips on the importance of planning. I'll tell her we can consult a property management service as they can provide more information about the property managing process.
3/13/2023 04:53:44 pm
Thanks so much for talking about the importance of treating renting your home or vacation as a business. my partner and I have been wanting to go on a low-key vacation and we've been thinking about renting a condo or something similar so we have space to relax. We'll have to be sure we find a rental place that takes itself seriously so we can ensure it will be a good experience.
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