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Lockitron Remote Keyless Entry

As a vacation rental owner, I’ve come across some pretty awesome high-tech gadgets to help manage my property remotely. In some cases I’m spending a little extra for the peace of mind, but in others I save in the long run. More importantly, I’m chipping away at that distracting “what if they forgot/what if I forgot” feeling. And in a lot of ways it’s making things easier for my renters.

Here are some things I either use, can’t wait to try, or have heard about from other vacation rental owners:

Keyless Entry With Cell Phone

Cool, no? Lockitron lets your guests lock and unlock the door with their cell phones. You can add or revoke access instantly, so it’s great for a multi-user situation like vacation rentals. Continue Reading…

Travel Concierge on DutyI think the 3rd most asked question I get from travelers after “What are your rates?” and “Is your home available for these dates?” is “What activities and restaurants would your recommend near your home?” We typically go back and forth via email, me asking them what kinds of activities they like, if they’re traveling with children, what type of food are they looking for, etc, etc. Basically, I’ve become their travel concierge.

I decided it was a lot easier to just start posting my recommendations, favorite restaurants and upcoming events to my website. You can do the same and save yourself countless hours by directing travelers to your website. Plus, a local guide will also help your vacation rental website get found more easily online. Continue Reading…

Haggle Free ZoneIt may be due to our recession economy, or the ever-growing array of online travel choices, or due to the growing interest in vacation rentals among travelers, but the fact is, travelers are increasingly likely to ask for a discount.

First, don’t feel pressure to concede! Ultimately it’s your decision whether you want to offer a discount or not. When you find yourself faced with a traveler looking to negotiate, here are some practical tips to help you out with some scenarios you’ve likely encountered already.

Scenario #1: The Bargain Hunter

An email inquiry checking dates available also comes along with a request for your “best available rates.” Everyone likes a bargain and travelers are only going to give you their business if they feel like they’re getting a good deal. Continue Reading…